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Childhood Violence

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Samantha (Intervention Canada)

Season 17, Episode 8

Samantha
Age: 27
Location:  Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
Addiction:  Fentanyl

Official Synopsis: With the birth of her two daughters, Samantha gave up using crystal meth and heroin. But when she began consorting with figures from her druggy past, she fell back into addiction and soon lost custody of her children. Samantha’s family are desperate to help her be the good mother she once was, but now she is addicted to fentanyl and her very life hangs in the balance.

Date Aired:  September 2017
Interventionist:
Jesse

Kathy (Intervention Canada)

Season 16, Episode 3

Kathy
Age: 51
Location:  Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Addiction: Crack, alcohol

What’s Memorable: Kathy is obviously a very smart, vibrant, fun, strong woman when she’s not high or trying to get high. She had ROUGH childhood, and adulthood for that matter, so it’s not shocking that she would turn to drugs. But she did so great for a while and her slide from where she once was is so unsettling. Her misery about being who she is right now, while simultaneously demanding to be able to stay that way, is a difficult thing to watch.  I had high hopes for her recovery, too bad it didn’t take. Hopefully she’ll get herself into treatment and get back to being who she really is.

Official Synopsis: Wealthy entrepreneur loses everything to crack, reducing her life to a never ending cycle of prostitution and begging. (Canadian produced.)

Date Aired:  December 2016
Interventionist:
Andrew

 

 

Episode 178: Kelly

kelly13

 

Kelly
Age: 27
Location: Harbor City, CA
Addiction: OxyContin and meth
What’s Memorable: The man who raped when she was a kid (her sister’s boyfriend) went to jail for raping someone else and is about to be released. Her need to escape is understandable. The way she talks about what happened is excruciating. She has so much pain and reasonable resentment. It seems from the followup like she had found some measure of peace in her sobriety. I hope that continues.

Official synopsis: Kelly, a 27-year-old mother of three, mixes pills and meth to forget the man behind bars who destroyed her childhood. Can Kelly’s family come together to help her face the painful past that consumes her?
Original Air Date: November 2012
Interventionist: Jeff

Episode 143: Luke

luke

Luke
Age: 23
Location: San Francisco, California
Addiction: Crack
What’s memorable: Living on the streets with his mother who is willingly homeless just so she can keep an eye on her son. That’s some crazy co-dependency there. The craziness that he spouts when he’s high is disturbing.  The intervention and followup is a tear jerker, very affecting. I hope this family is well now.

Official Synopsis: Luke, 23, dreams of a career in photojournalism, but his daily cocktail of drugs has derailed his college plans and left both him and his mother struggling to survive on the streets of San Francisco.

Original Air Date: August 2011

Episode 146: Penny Lee

pennyless

Penny Lee
Age: 48
Location: Waipahu, Hawaii
Addiction: Alcohol (beer)
What’s memorable: The crazytown drunken rants, how she quit her long-term job because she wanted to drink, how guilty her son feels about going to live with their dad, how she’s forced to babysit her grandson and has to beg to get paid for it because her daughter knows she’d buy beer with it. “If they feel they can’t trust me with money, then why trust me with my grandson?” Penny Lee does make sense sometimes. The intervention is a powerful one.

“We’re gonna do our very best to heal your whole family. You don’t ever have to live this way again” – Candy

“Thank you.” – Penny Lee

Official Synopsis: Living in a small Hawaiian village, Penny-Lee has an infectious laugh and loves to have fun. But despite having a good family life and four children to be proud of, she’s an out-of-control alcoholic who spends most of her time alone, screaming and crying out to no one as she downs beer after beer. An intervention is her family’s last hope for their beloved family matriarch.

Original Air Date: July 2011
Interventionist: Candy

Episode 79: Anthony

anthony

Anthony
Age: 22
Location: Wayne County, Indiana
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)
What’s memorable: “It’s a sick love affair and I’m a hopeless romantic.” – Anthony. Oh, Anthony. Such a sad lost soul. His alcoholism is so advanced for his age, he’s been hospitalized 12 times in 3 months for alcohol poisoning. And what a mess he is when he’s drunk. He’s got a very sad and tragic story, never feeling welcome in his own family and losing his brother after taking care of him and even donating his bone marrow. The followup is uplifting, really hope it took.

Official Synopsis:
From an early age, Anthony’s father made him feel worthless. His parents divorced, and his mother remarried, but she was still unhappy and turned to alcohol and drugs. It was little wonder, then, that Anthony began drinking at age 13. Another blow came when Anthony’s younger brother died of leukemia. Anthony spiraled downward, and now he drinks half a gallon of vodka a day and takes whatever drugs he can find.
Original Air Date: January 2009

Episode 145: Megan

Season 10, Episode 5

Megan

Megan
Age: 27
Location: Chapel Hill, North Carolina
Addiction: Cocaine, opiates (oxy, heroin, xanax)
What’s memorable: All the degrees she has, how smart she is. How her mom stayed with the husband who was abusive toward Megan, then left him as soon as he started being abusive to her instead. Shameful. And Megan really holds on to that resentment. Also the first trip to a new john, not knowing if she would come out alive. That was frightening. But an AWESOME followup. She looked so much better!

Note: Megan died in February of 2014 of a heroin overdose.  News story  Obituary

Official Synopsis:
Megan is struggling with her own demons. Her mother divorced and remarried, but Megan never felt included in her new family. She became an addict and even turned to prostitution to pay for her drugs. Can Megan still realize the dreams she once had of becoming a lawyer or professor?

Original Air Date: July 2011

Interventionist: Candy

Episode 172: Cher

Cher

Cher
Age: 50
Location: Dana Point, California
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)
What’s memorable: Cher’s alcoholism seems to have made her a pretty awful person to be around.  She’s just so mean and needy and sensitive, so desperate for attention; the things she does and says to try and force her family to “love” her, to treat her the way she thinks she deserves to be treated. The way she harangues her dying father and tries to make her daughter feel guilty for having her own life is just horrific. The followup was briefly awesome.

Official Synopsis: Loud and spunky 50-year old alcohol addiction has led to liver damage and is driving a wedge between herself and her family.
Original Air Date: October 2012
Interventionist: Seth

Episode 169: Susie and Miriam

Susie

Susie
Age: 41
Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Addiction: Crack

Miriam

Miriam
Age: 41
Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Addiction: Alcohol

What’s memorable: The abuse they suffered and how Susie would take the brunt of it to protect her sisters, the amount of violence she experiences now as a result of her addiction, the weird dynamics the twins have, the awesome followup and how amazing and healthy they both looked after treatment. Really there’s lots going on in this one, but what will stick with me the most is Miriam giving in and smoking crack with her sister after everyone was talking about how worried they were that she’d relapse if she spent too much time with her. That scene was harrowing.

Official Synopsis: Attractive, charismatic 41 year-old twins, Susie and Miriam, battle crack and alcohol addictions and each other as their career success and families slowly slip away.
Original Air Date: October 2012
Interventionist: Candy

Episode 162: Kaylene

kaylene

Kaylene
Age: 21
Location: Barnardsville, North Carolina
Addiction: Pain meds (Percocet mostly) and Xananx
What’s memorable: Girl gets giddy when she’s high! At least when she’s not passing out. She seems really convinced that she’s super happy and loving her life. Her entire goal right now is to just have a good time and get away from all the pain she’s had in her life. I get that. But she is SO not seeing how it’s affecting the people she loves. Watching her mother and 7 year old sister go through the little girl’s penny jar in order to give Kaylene money for drugs is pretty awful and heartwrenching. And that intervention! Holy crap, the tears, they were rollin. There’s a reason why these things work – having someone you love dearly say the thing you’ve been wanting them to say forever, to show emotion that you didn’t know they were capable of, is an incredibly powerful thing.

Official Synopsis: As a child, Kaylene was physically abused by her father. Later, she and her mother began using coke together. Now Kaylene is a 21-year-old who oozes sweetness and charm but who is unafraid to die and will stop at nothing to get her next fix. After so many years of neglect, can Kaylene’s family finally step up and help her get the live-saving treatment she so desperately needs?

Original Air Date: March 2012
Interventionist: Donna

Episode 155: Richard

Richard
Age: 34
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Addiction: Meth
What’s memorable: The pain and abuse he suffered as a child, how delusional he is about how meth is affecting his life and what he thinks it does for him, the non-intervention, the icky and sad predilection toward incest-themed sexual encounters. “I’ve been anticipating the desires of adult males since I was 5 years old.” – Richard.

Official Synopsis: A 34-year-old gay man, Richard grew up knowing he was different and never feeling accepted. His stepfather disciplined him severely for his effeminate behavior. Today, Richard lives in subsidized housing and has done everything from dealing to prostituting himself to support his meth addiction. Richard’s family will have to make amends to him if they hope to get through to him.

Original Air Date: January 2012
Interventionist: Candy

Episode 156: Dallas

Dallas

Dallas
Age: 21
Location: Portland, Oregon
Addiction: Heroin
What’s memorable: Shooting up in the femoral veins, the insanely oblivious enabling mother, how ridiculously good-looking Dallas and her fellow Portland street kid boyfriend would be if they weren’t junkies, the fact that they both prostitute themselves for heroin. “You have to what you have to do and there’s no shame in this crazy heroin game that we’re in.” -Jason

Official Synopsis: Strikingly beautiful with a great sense of humor, Dallas is nevertheless addicted to heroin and lives on the streets. After her mother attempted suicide, Dallas turned to drugs to deal with the confusion and pain. But Dallas’s mother is in denial about her addiction and supports her “heroin-chic” lifestyle. Dallas’s family needs a wake-up call and face her problems head-on if they’re going to save her.

Original Air Date: January 2012
Interventionist: Donna

Episode 124: John

John 124 Season 8 Ep 8

John
Age: 30’s
Location: Houston, Texas
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s memorable: “Oh yeah, I’m the party.” Dude’s a super fun guy! And in some serious denial. He’s been arrested 24 times for drunk and disorderly conduct and has been hospitalized more than 20 times. His family thinks he has a death wish. He doesn’t think he has a problem. Also memorable – the profoundly disabled little brother, the obese sister who John thinks should lose weight before talking to him about his drinking, how he was wasted at his mother’s funeral.

Official Synopsis: John is a flight attendant who loves his job, but his lifestyle is fueling his alcoholism. When he was a boy, John’s parents focused their attention on his “profoundly retarded” brother. His mother blamed herself for the disability and turned her anger towards John. Now John’s alcoholism leaves him prone to blackouts.
Original Air Date: August 2010

Episode 41: Hubert

hubert-alcohol

Hubert
Age: 50
Location: Los Angeles, California
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s memorable: By all accounts an amazing, happy, fun, cool guy that is now homeless on the streets of LA and drinks all day. Hubert’s story is the episode that made me realize what it is I learned from this show that makes me love it so much: That every addict you meet is so much more than what they seen. It’s harder to appreciate an addict’s humanity when you see them living at their rock bottom – homeless, panhandling, prostituting – but people like Hubert remind you of it. Also memorable: his bipolar homeless friend John who really tries to take care of him despite wanting to walk away but caring too much to that. The neighborhood real estate officer who saw Hubert’s humanity and called the Intervention producers. The awesome, caring family who loves him so much. Hubert’s need to please his father.

Official Synopsis: Growing up Hubert, now 50, never felt truly loved by his stepfather. And his stepfather admits giving more love and attention to his three biological children. Meanwhile, Hubert protected his brother and sisters from hearing and seeing their parents screaming and hitting one another. Forty years later, it’s Hubert’s siblings’ turn to help him overcome a horrible alcohol addiction that has left him living on the streets of Los Angeles for the past six months.
Original Air Date: April 2007

Episode 40: Dillon

Dillon

Dillon
Age: 20
Location: Oklahoma
Addiction: Meth
What’s memorable: His lifetime of risk-taking, his total apathy about what he’s doing to the people around him, his sad frustrated co-dependent mother, the dilapidated trailer he lives in with his addict father, the completely insane intervention. Dillon’s story has an exceptionally tragic ending, which you can read about here.

Official Synopsis: Growing up, Dillon showed tremendous promise. But after a bitter divorce, his mother, Tammy hoped that Dillon wouldn’t follow in the footsteps of his violent, alcoholic father. But today Tammy’s worst fears have come true. Dillon, 20, is living with his father in a dilapidated trailer where he injects methamphetamines every day and refuses any overtures for help. Tammy has one final hope–an intervention.
Original Air Date: April 2007

Episode 83: Tiffany

tiffany1

Tiffany
Age: 20’s
Location: Undetermined
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)
What’s memorable: Hospitalized 20 times for alcohol-related injuries – Yikes! How her parents are both alcoholics but deny that that has anything to do with Tiffany’s problem. How AMAZING she looked after treatment – her followup video is a must watch.

Official Synopsis: A tall, beautiful brunette, Tiffany maintained a perfect GPA in high school and played Varsity basketball. But despite her achievements, Tiffany’s childhood was plagued by her parents’ violent marriage and their drug and alcohol abuse. She married at 19 to escape the pain of her youth, but her controlling husband forced her to move back in with her mother. Battling feelings of worthlessness, Tiffany self-medicated with alcohol. Now, she has been hospitalized numerous times for alcohol-related injuries and has attempted suicide.
Original Air Date: July 2008
Interventionist: Candy

Episode 106: Vinnie

Vinnie Season 7 Episode 106

Vinnie
Age: 28
Location: Hartford, Connecticut
Addiction: Crack
What’s memorable: How he gets money for crack by stealing and selling auto parts, his poor put-upon enabling mother, his dog Max as primary companion in the place of the family he wants so badly. It’s a very sad story. He’s so lonely, so desperate, so addicted, and completely aware of all of that and truly hates himself for it.

UPDATE: As of the followup that aired July 10, 2016, Vinnie is still clean doing great!

Official Synopsis: When Vinnie was a boy, his father abused him physically and verbally, leaving his mother feeling helpless. He developed a love for fast-paced sports, including BMX, motocross, and car racing, but his need for speed turned into an addiction to crack cocaine. Now, Vinnie lives in his car with his dog and smokes up to $1,000 worth of crack a week. Vinnie’s mother tries to make up for not protecting him when he was younger by giving him money and a place to stay. But Vinnie needs more than that–he needs an intervention.
Original Air Date: January 2010

Episodes 120: Donna and Josh

Donna Season 8 episode 120

Josh Season 8 episode 120

Donna & Josh
Age: Josh is 20, Donna is 47
Location: Covington, Washington
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s memorable:  The very unhealthy mother-son dynamic. The awesome followup.

Official Synopsis: Every day, Donna, 47, and her son, Josh, 20, cause a storm of drinking, fighting, and chaos in the overcrowded home they share with Donna’s sister, mother, and a stable-full of dogs and cats. Raised by alcoholic parents, Donna was exposed to violence and abuse at an early age, and later drank so heavily that she lost custody of her two children. Josh, now an adult, has moved back in with Donna, and they have become drinking buddies. Both mother and son need help desperately to save themselves and to stop the cycle of alcoholism from being passed down to another generation of their family.
Original Air Date: June 2010

Episode 50: Fabian

Season 4, Episode 2

Fabian Season 4 Episode 50

Fabian
Age: 37
Location: Los Angeles, California
Addiction: Meth and Alcohol
What’s Memorable: I think it’s interesting that Fabian thinks he needs to be high/drunk in order to create, and doesn’t realize he’s not actually making much of anything.

Official synopsis:  Fabian, 37, was once a successful entertainment entrepreneur, but his escalating addiction has cost him everything.
Original Air Date: December 2007

Interventionist: Ken

Episode 55: Josh

Season 4, Episode 6

Josh Season 4 episode 5

Josh
Age: 22
Location: Undetermined
Addiction: Food
What’s Memorable: How sad he is that he got so big, the incredibly messed-up family dynamic, especially dealing with his father. The followups and Josh’s subsequent youtube videos that shed more light on his situation. Here’s the latest video I could find.

Note: Josh is in the “Homosexuality as possible addiction trigger” category because he came out after the episode aired. I don’t know for sure that being in the closet was a part of his overeating, but it certainly makes sense.

Official synopsis: Next, a talented singer and the owner of his own karaoke business, 22-year-old Josh is addicted to food and weighs 550 lbs. Josh’s father, Rex, has the same weight problem–at 317 lbs., he’s a diabetic who’s had six strokes. Now, Rex watches helplessly as Josh follows in his footsteps toward an early death. Josh’s mother and two brothers hope that an intervention will be a wake-up call for the whole family to choose health.

Original Air Date: January 2008
Interventionist: Ken

Episode 55: Ben

Season 4, Episode 6

Ben
Age: 25
Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Addiction: DXM (cough medicine)
What’s Memorable: The psychosis he displays as he walks around the city, the older dude that had a sexual relationship with him and still supports him to some extent, the things this kid could have done with his life.

Official synopsis: Ben, 25, experienced a childhood filled with domestic violence, homelessness and isolation. He never got to fulfill the potential of his 170 I.Q. and found a new way to find comfort when he was in high school–a drug called DXM. Now, Ben spends his days shoplifting, panhandling, and even prostituting himself to finance his drug addiction. Desperate to help Ben, his mother arranges an intervention that’s her last hope for saving his life.
Original Air Date: January 2008

Intereventionist: Jeff

Episode 59: Lawrence

Season 4, Episode 10

lawrence

Lawrence
Age: 34
Location: Las Vegas
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)
What’s Memorable: Oh man, the denial Lawrence was in is absolutely shocking. “Half the time I don’t even think he realizes that he’s drinking.” The bruises all over his body, how weak he is, how he needs his co-workers to totally take care of his basic needs. And, of course, the followup.

Update: Lawrence did on February 23, 2008 from bleeding resulting from cirrhosis of the liver.

Official synopsis: Having graduated high school with academic and athletic honors, Lawrence, 34, became a successful owner of a chain of tanning salons. But he was never able to dull the pain of emotional and physical abuse suffered in childhood. Alcohol took hold and Lawrence became a shell of his former self, often drinking a liter of vodka a day. A recent battle with cancer left him further weakened. Lawrence’s loved ones stage an intervention in the hope that this show of love and support will help Lawrence get the help he needs, and that by sharing his story he might help others.
Original Air Date: February 2008

Interventionist: Jeff

Episode 134: Cassie

Cassie Season 9 Episode 134

Cassie
Age:  22
Location: Coral Springs, Florida
Addicted to: Oxycodone, crack
What’s Memorable:The horrible Costa Rican and Jamiacan “modification camps” her father sent her to as a teen.

Official synopsis:  Cassie, 22, is a crack and oxycodone addict who was abandoned by her mother and raised by her father and his string of wives. At 13, she was sent to an overseas behavior modification school that offered her little more than imprisonment and abuse. She escaped into a life of drugs and had a baby she couldn’t care for. Now she’s turned to prostitution to pay for her drugs, and her father enables her addiction while the rest of the family wonders how to keep her from dying.
Original Air Date: January 2011

Episode 133: Jenna

jenna

Jenna
Age:  28
Location: Boston, Massachusettes
Addicted to: Heroin
What’s Memorable: The stepfather and the intense long-term emotional turmoil Jenna and her siblings have suffered as a result. Jenna’s decision to meet with her stepfather at a waterpark – while I personally understand it, I get why the siblings don’t.  I also really respect Jenna’s boyfriend (and eventual husband) John for participating in this intervention despite being an addict himself. It takes a lot to do that.

Official synopsis:  Jenna, 28, once a sweet natured and compassionate young girl, endured a brutal childhood that still haunts her and her siblings. Today she steals and manipulates her family to support her destructive heroin habit. Can Jenna and her siblings overcome their past to work together as a family and get Jenna into treatment?
Original Air Date: January 2011

Episode 136: Jamie

jamie

Jamie
Age: 27
Location: Windsor, Ontario, Canada
Addiction: Alcohol, Ketamine

What’s Memorable: The death of Jamie’s twin sister, the really messed up ways that her family thinks they’re helping her, the weird intervention. (“Since I arrived here, none of this has been about Jamie” – Candy)

Official synopsis: At a teen, Jamie did drugs and abused alcohol to deal with her traumatic upbringing. At 21, she turned to the church and got sober, but then the fatal overdose of her twin sister triggered a relapse. Now Jamie suffers from alcohol-induced pancreatitis and has suicidal tendencies. As Jamie’s family struggles with their own loss, Jamie feels alone in her fight against addiction. Can an intervention bring the family together?

Original Air Date: March 2011

Episode 37: Kim

kim

Kim
Age: 34
Location: Northern California
Addiction: Anorexia
What’s Memorable: The extent to which Kim hates herself is truly disturbing. She is clearly mentally ill, just completely drowning in her horrible thoughts.

Official synopsis: Kim is a beautiful 34-year-old make-up artist who grew up a cheerleader and popular. But fearing her good looks and slim figure were deteriorating, Kim turned to bulimia and anorexia. Now Kim’s weight issues have taken over her life. She is entrenched in a divorce with her high school sweetheart, who she still loves dearly. She’s moved in with her mother and stepfather, with whom she can’t get along. Kim’s needs have taken over the household and no one believes it can get better unless Kim agrees to get help.
Original Air Date: March 2007

Episode 36: Jacob

jacob2

Jacob
Age: 24
Location: Sacramento, California
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s Memorable: Jacob is a sad angry mess, but he’s so incredibly smart and self-aware and open about how he feels and where he’s at in his life, it’s very easy to like him. You root for him to get his shit together because you can tell he’d be an awesome and happy sober person. The followup is pure joy. I found myself wishing I could track him down and try to be his friend. If you’re reading this Jacob, email me. Let’s hang.

Official synopsis: By day, Jacob, 25, is a banker. But most nights, Jacob is drinking, driving and often engaged in barroom brawls. He recently overdosed on alcohol and prescription drugs. His heart stopped and he had to be revived with paddles. Jacob blames his mother — a drug user and former dealer — for his addiction. But will he be able to hear her when she pleads for him to get help?
Original Air Date: March 2007

Episode 138 – Tiffany

tiffany2

Tiffany
Age:  24
Location: Florida
Addicted to: Meth, GHB, Xanax
What’s Memorable: How insanely skinny she is. Doing drugs in the storage unit. The GHB.

Official synopsis:  Tiffany, a former beauty queen, has always wanted the family she never had. Now, after ten years of using crystal meth and looking for love in all the wrong places, Tiffany may lose the one thing she values most, her one-year-old daughter. Her family is terrified that they’re going to lose Tiffany, and desperately hope that an intervention will save her from her abusive boyfriend and constant drug use.
Original Air Date: March 2011

Episode 3: Jerrie

Jerrie Season 1 Episode 3

Jerrie
Age: 29
Location: Portland, Oregon
Addicted to: Vicodin
What’s memorable: How crazy she gets when the package with her Vicodin doesn’t arrive in the mail. Also, the stealing from the terminally ill boyfriend and the insane amount of debt.

Official synopsis: Jerrie’s family calls interventionist Jeff Van Vonderen to help their 29-year-old daughter, who is addicted to Vicodin. Jerrie is so addicted that she has been forging physician signatures to get the prescriptions that she thinks she needs. She also walks around the waterfront to find drug dealers so she can get high.
Original Air Date: March 2005

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