Season 14, Episode 4
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Addiction: Heroin and cocaine, smoked together
What’s memorable: This is a tough one. Zach continuously pawns his grandfather’s possessions for drug money (his laptop, guns, vacuum cleaner) and then immediately feels tremendously guilty about it, even admits that he did it as soon as he gets home and then deals with his grandfather’s frustrated rage. The amount of guilt and shame he carries around is visible on his face and the way he carries himself, but he just can’t stop doing it. The drugs come first, consequences be damned. And Whitney is an interesting case. She first makes it sound like she just started doing it within the last few weeks to “get closer” to him, but it seems clear she’s been addicted for a while and probably submitted Zach to the show in hopes of getting help for herself as well. Can’t say I blame her, and I guess it’s not technically against the rules. The intervention was pretty powerful, with Zach in tears as soon as he walked in. I’m so glad he’s taking his sobriety seriously and doing what he has to do to get his family back together.
Synopsis: While still a child, Zach’s father was incarcerated, and Zach and his sister were adopted by their loving grandparents. When Zach’s father was released from jail he moved in with the grandparents, hoping for a fresh start. It didn’t take long for his father to fall off the wagon, and in fact, it was Zach’s father who first introduced Zach to heroin. Using, but still functional, Zach met his girlfriend Whitney, and two years ago, she had their son. Today Zach’s cocaine and heroin addiction is out of control. Whitney has turned to Intervention for help.
Original Air Date: April 2015
Age: Early 20’s
Location: West Virginia and Baltimore
Addiction: Heroin mostly, also coke
What’s Memorable: This is the episode I think I will remember more than any other in 20 years. The insanely dangerous time she spends in Baltimore and what she has to do for drugs, how much her mother loves her, the amazing follow up. She’s one of the addicts from this show that I actually would like to know in real life (sober). I really hope she’s well now.
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!
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
Location: Escanaba, Michigan
Addiction: Cocaine, Bath Salts
What’s memorable: The abusive drug-addicted husband, the accusations of abuse against her stepmother, which her father denied. The touching intervention where dad said what he needed to say despite his reluctance to believe it, just to get her to accept help.
Official Synopsis: A family begging her to get help and two overdoses in the last two weeks don’t phase 21-year-old Britney as she fearlessly shoots up suboxone and bath salts up to 30 times a day.
Original Air Date: September 2012
Location: Denver, Colorado
Addiction: Heroin and cocaine (speedballs)
What’s memorable: Yeah, knowing that your bullying had something to do with the Columbine massacre has got to be pretty hard to deal with. The house he stays in with other junkies is disturbing. The relationship he has with his father, and the way he talks about it after treatment, is really interesting.
Official Synopsis: Jason grew up in a seemingly perfect upper-middle class family in Littleton, Col., but he struggled to gain his father’s approval. When Jason failed to make the baseball team his freshman year, Jason and his father were devastated. Jason began rollerblading and excelled, but he quit because his father disapproved of the sport. Jason turned to drugs and by his senior year he was an addict. A year later, the Columbine High School shooters named Jason one of the bullies they retaliated against. Overcome with guilt and grief for his dead classmates, Jason’s addiction escalated. Now Jason lives on the streets of Denver, and his family is in pieces.
Original Air Date: June 2009
Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Addiction: Alcohol, cocaine
What’s Memorable: The huge singing Christian family, the addicted little sister, the terribly repressed and abusive childhood.
Official synopsis: Jason, 23, was born into a strict Southern Baptist family. His father, a preacher, and his unstable mother doled out excessive punishments. But when Jason’s mother revealed she’s a lesbian, Jason’s father was banished from the church and had to take several jobs to feed his family. Left with no supervision, Jason turned to drugs and alcohol. And now his younger sister, Joy, is heading down the same self-destructive path, too. Can a double intervention save them?
Original Air Date: January 2008
Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
Addiction: Heroin & Cocaine (Speedballs), Bulimia
What’s Memorable: The skin-picking, how badly the drugs have affected her looks, her controlling anorexic mother, her 50-year old boyfriend.
Official synopsis: As a child Caylee was an over-achiever from an affluent family. But despite her myriad successes, her mother, Christy, was never satisfied with her. Christy, herself was sexually-abused as a girl, and has hidden her bulimia from her family for 35 years. When Caylee was in grade school, Christy began to teach her daughter to count her calories. In high school, Caylee became a bulimic and began drinking. Now, she is 23 and a bulimic and a heroin addict. She is 80 lbs, and goes to her 50 year-old “boyfriend” for drugs and money. The family wants to help both mother and daughter. If they can find a way to have the mother present for Caylee’s intervention, they can then approach Christy about her bulimia as well.
Original Air Date: August 2007
Location: Bridgeport, Ohio
Addicted to: Opiates, Alcohol, Pain Meds
What’s Memorable: Benny really believes he deserves to be crazy rich, and seems confused about why he’s not yet. He thinks it’s just going to magically happen someday, and all his problems will be solved. Also, how horrible he is to his mother, the intervention.
Official synopsis: An ambitious inventor and entrepreneur, Benny once dreamed of becoming a millionaire. But stress, drugs, and alcohol have turned his dream into a nightmare. Worst of all, he is no longer a dependable father to his six-year-old daughter. Benny, now 38 and living with his mother, has seen his relationship with his family reach the breaking point, and only an intervention can save him now.
Original Air Date: January 2011
Location: Jersey shore
Official synopsis: Anthony has been working at the pizzerias owned by his family since he was a kid. A good athlete, colleges offered him baseball scholarships. But at 14, everything changed. His sister died of a heroin overdose and his mother fell into an emotional black hole. Anthony found comfort in cocaine, and today he needs methadone to get him through the day until he can shoot coke at night. His family is not ready to let him hit rock bottom, but Anthony won’t get better until his entire family embraces change.
Original Air Date: April 2007
Location: Modesto, California
Addiction: Heroin, Cocaine (speedballs)
What’s Memorable: Dude’s a chiropractor! And he does speedballs before he goes to work every day. Crazy.
Official synopsis: A high achiever as a young man, Mike developed a life-threatening dependency on speed balling, which involves mixing cocaine and heroin. Only an intervention can save him now that he’s lost his marriage, his business, and the custody of his children to drugs.
Original Air Date: July 2006
Location: New York City
Addiction: Heroin, cocaine
What’s memorable: The only New York City street junkie that’s been profiled on the show. The seriously messed up boyfriend who told her he’d dump her if she went to treatment. How much better she looked after treatment.
Note: Sad news about her boyfriend Joie – read here.
Official synopsis: drug addict living on the streets, Rachel uses her “street kid” lifestyle to defy society and her father, with whom she’s had a strained relationship since her parents’ divorce. Rachel started experimenting with cocaine and meth at 14, and using heroin at 16. She survived on the streets with the help of her boyfriend until he was sent to jail. Now Rachel must fend for herself. Can an intervention mend her relationship with her father and save her from herself?
Original Air Date: December 2010
Addiction: Alcohol, cocaine, crack
Update: John sent me an email – he’s doing really well. He’s been sober since his intervention almost 9 years ago and is married with a son. He even gives talks at local high schools, sharing his story in the hopes it can help students. Congratulations for all you’ve accomplished in your sobriety John, and thanks for keeping us updated.
Official synopsis: At 33, all John can see is the loss in his life. His mother died when he was 12. This year, he lost his sister, his cousin and his best friend. His only escape from it all is in his addiction to crack and alcohol, an addiction that has already come close to taking his life. His family and friends cannot imagine losing someone else. Their only hope is an intervention and the possibility that John will seek treatment.
Original Air Date: July 2006
Addiction: Alcohol, cocaine, marijuana
What’s memorable: The strong bond she has with her son and how she turned to drugs when her husband got cancer. And also that she reminds me so much of me and my friends when we were in our 20’s.
Official synopsis: Andrea is a 30-year-old, divorced, single mother addicted to alcohol, cocaine and marijuana. She says that she loves the party lifestyle and that she can’t end the cycle of drinking and drugs in which she’s immersed herself. Can an intervention can bring her the “peace” she’s looking for?
Original Air Date: April 2006
Age: late 30’s?
Location: Big city in the South
Addicted to: Cocaine
What’s Memorable: This was a weird one. We find out very very little about Tommy’s history. We don’t see pictures of his life before he became a homeless coke addict. At no point in the episode does Tommy do drugs. We never see him trying to get it or after he’s gotten high. All we know is what he says things used to be like, and all we see is the apparent consequences of his addiction – a storage unit with only a few things left, sleeping on the roofs of his friends’ condos, taking advantage of free hotel breakfasts, riding around on his bike.
Official synopsis: Tommy, who quit his executive job and sold his Lexus, retirement plan, and million-dollar condo to sustain his cocaine habit.
Original Air Date: June 2005
Addiction: Cocaine, marijuana, and more
What’s Memorable: What a sweet guy he is, in such unfortunate circumstances despite being a millionaire, his equally messed up brother.
Official synopsis: A mother fears for the life of her son, a former wrestling star who turned to drugs after an accident left him wheelchair-bound.
Original Air Date: July 2005