Is It Okay To Force Someone To Go To Rehab?

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Addiction is a problem that is painful for family members because it damages family connections and dynamics.  Addicts can become a danger to themselves or to the people around them if they do not seek help or go to rehab.

So what steps should you take once you recognize a loved one is living with an addiction and they refuse to be voluntarily treated?  Furthermore, if an addict is not willing to get help, is it okay to force them to get treatment against their will?

What factors should be considered?

If your loved one is willing to recognize their problem, you can embark on open communication dialogue. Connecting, speaking, and listening may lead them to get treatment.

Is hosting an intervention an option? Professionally trained counselors and psychologists have the ability to help in assisting in convincing an addict to get help.

Will you provide full support to the person affected by addiction? If yes, then you will take on a role as their pillar of support by being reassuring and encouraging throughout their recovery process.

Is the Law on your side? 

The addict may not be willing to seek or receive help. If you have someone who needs to be treated for a drug addiction, civil rights can make it difficult to force addicts against their will to be treated.

Many states have some form of an involuntary commitment law. There are several laws in place that support forced rehab:

These laws seek to force someone against their will into rehab and treatment. The laws aim to reach addicts who pose a threat or danger to themselves, their family members, or other people.

Does forced rehab help?

Your goal is to seek help for an addict in your life, someone that you care and love. Your care and love is what drives your desire and need to force an addict into treatment.  But will it help? Will forced treatment result in healing for your family, for the addict?

TIME Magazine says, “If an addict apparently doesn’t want help, forced care will get their attention. And studies show that people who are coerced into rehab do no worse than those who attend voluntarily.”

If you believe your friend or family member needs treatment for a drug and alcohol rehab addiction, contact us today for help.


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Wethington, Charlotte. “Casey’s Law-Home.” Casey’s Law-Home. N.p., n.d. Web. 07 June 2016. <>.

“What to Do If Your Adult Friend or Loved One Has a Problem with Drugs.” National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA). N.p., 19 Jan. 2016. Web. 07 June 2016. <>.