Have you seen the show Intervention? I’m sitting here right now watching it, and it’s about a sex addict and a morbidly obese person. The show focuses on someone with an addiction and shows how it is ruining their life. By the end of the episode the main characters loved ones hold an intervention and usually say “We love you, but we refuse to be around you while your addicted to…”. The family essentially says they aren’t willing to put up with his/her addiction anymore and they will cut them off if he/she doesn’t get help. I’d say about 50% of the time the person decides to go get treatment, with 50% of those that sought treatment actually completing and getting better. It’s an extremely interesting show and I highly recommend checking it out if you haven’t already.
Watching this show got my brain juices flowing and made me think “What would a financial intervention look like?” I bet most of us are close to someone that has poor financial habits. There is a difference though between someone with bad spending habits and someone whose financial decisions affect not only their lives, but also those that are close to them. It’s the dad that spends his money at the bar after work instead of paying the mortgage to provide shelter for his family. The teenage girl that steals her parents credit card and goes on a shopping spree. It’s the person that borrows money from their friends knowing they will never pay them back. These are the people that need financial interventions.
So, what would a financial intervention look like? It might involve conversing with others that are affected. Cutting off all financial support to that person. And even confronting them with your concern for not just their financial well being, but their overall quality of life.
Do you know someone that needs a financial intervention? Could you intervene if necessary? At what point do we have an obligation to voice our concerns? These are questions that I don’t know the answer to, but should be considered if we know someone that has serious financial issues. I wish I could provide some great advice or solution, but I’m left just thinking, “What would I do?”