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What to Expect When You Seek Crisis Counseling

By Comments off By the Numbers: What to Expect When You Seek Crisis Counseling

Dynamic Family Services include care for the whole family, not just the person with a substance use disorder.

There’s a parable in the drug and alcohol recovery community that sums up the experience of a family dealing with a loved one’s addiction. They’ve been hiding in the basement while a tornado rips through, damaging their home. When the wind stops blowing the family emerges from the basement to view the destruction around them. They’ve got a long process of rebuilding ahead of them. A person in crisis with an active addiction is like that storm and getting them the help they need is the equivalent to the wind not blowing anymore. Getting past this crisis might mean getting that person into treatment. But there’s still clean-up and rebuilding that needs to happen—for the whole family.

If your family is in crisis due to a loved one’s substance use disorder, we hope you’re ready to ask for help getting them into treatment. When deciding whether to work with a recovery consultant like Marc Hertz Consulting, the more you know about the process, the better prepared you will be to start rebuilding your family. Here’s what will happen:

It might be different than what you’re expecting.

Typically the family will enter crisis counseling with the goal of focusing on the individual with the drug or alcohol addiction. However, the storm in the family has created a lot of collateral damage and the family is often not centered enough to respond appropriately. Our first mission in terms of intervening on the problem is to work with the family. We can help you, but that help may not be exactly what you’re expecting. Every family has unique dynamics. You may be surprised about the path we recommend, and we can’t tell you what that path is until we have an in-depth conversation and get data from you in order to provide counsel about the situation.

Get ready to learn.

Understanding how addiction works is one of the first steps for healing and acceptance to begin. What starts to become clear through the education process is that the behavioral symptoms of the family are similar to those of their loved one: attempts to control, preoccupation, even hiding and sneaking in the form of looking through their cell phone or checking their bank account, for example. Teaching family members how to appropriately deal with conflict, guilt, pain and remorse is a critical step that must be taken together. We help families learn how to deal with their loved one with  “calm assertiveness” or the ability to keep a center-balanced point of view when listening and communicating with them, instead of just reacting and getting caught up in their own unhealthy behaviors.

There’s a treatment option for everyone.

One of the most complicated parts of alcohol and drug crisis treatment is deciding on a course of action that is effective and fits with the resources available to the family. There are dozens of types of treatment options available and trying to sort through them by yourself can be overwhelming. Working with a consultancy like Marc Hertz Consulting can help you quickly identify the treatment option that’s best for your loved one—and that takes your insurance or, if you’re self-funded, is within your means. Here are some questions we’ll ask to determine the best fit:

  • What are the rudimentary issues? Are there emotional, mental or physical problems besides the addiction? Is this a dual diagnosis? Was trauma or abuse a triggering factor?
  • What are the family conditions? Is the drug or alcohol dependency by a student or business professional?
  • What are the financial concerns? How much can family members self-fund and what options will insurance or community resources cover?

Although the questions above might seem intimidating, they don’t have to be a hurdle that stands in the way of receiving high-quality treatment. A good recovery consultant will simplify this part of the process. We have created strong relationships with dozens of treatment providers. We know which centers take which types of insurance, which have scholarship programs, which are self-fund situations but affordable. Through our Dynamic Family Services, we’ll discover the root issues and help you understand and prepare to be active participants in your family’s recovery.

If you’re dealing with drug or alcohol problems or have a family member that is struggling with these conditions email us at or schedule a consultation today.