First, the A&E TV Program called Intervention has popularized the Johnson Approach that is based on the notion that family and friends must confront the addict about his problems and threaten him with total withdrawal of support unless he/she goes into treatment immediately. This is admittedly a hard nosed approach to getting a person to get help, but proponents insist it works.
Others say we need a better approach so the addict will not fall into despair. The use what is called a motivational process that speaks to people about their need to at least consider making some changes in their drinking or drugging. These folks are able to point to reams of research that their methods are superior to harsh confrontation.
The second event was Michael Jackson's death. It was well known that Mr. Jackson was overusing prescription drugs for many years. Family and friends had been begging someone to intervene in some way but their concerns fell on deaf ears. The enablers around Jackson were either co-dependent or living on easy street as a result of his habits.
Either type of intervention is better than no intervention. The harsh kind can certainly shock an addict into compliance but it takes a very skilled professional to carry it out. The Motivational Interviewing approach is my preference and I have written about it in my book, Hope and Change for Humpty Dumpty.
If someone you love drinks too much or is doing drugs, including marijuana, get help for yourself. see a good counselor who understands family dynamics as well as addictions. Go to
Life Way Centersto find a great counselor.