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Season 15

This category contains 13 posts

Episode 217: Brittany

Season 15, Episode 17

Brittany Intervention

Brittany
Age: 27
Location: Derby, Kansas
Addiction: Heroin

What’s Memorable: Brittany’s relationship with her dad is really moving. The guy seems so damn cool and a really good father, despite his addiction. I had a lot of respect for his willingness to go to treatment to help get his daughter clean. If that’s what he needs to motivate himself, fine, as long as it keeps him clean and keeps Brittany feeling supported.

Update: Brittany Christine Howard died on August 20th, 2016 of an overdose, 2 days after completing treatment. Her family has a GoFundMe to raise money for funeral expenses. And here is Brittany’s obituary

Official Synopsis: Brittany was part of the all-American family. But rape, drugs, and divorce have caused this family unit to crumble. At the center, Brittany’s heroin and meth abuse has created a tornado that has divided the family and now threatens her life..and worse yet, Brittany may not be the only active user in the house.

Date Aired:  Aug 2016
Interventionist:
Ken

Episode 216: Robert

Season 15, Episode 16

Intervention Robert

Robert
Age: 31
Location: Lamar, South Carolina
Addiction: Crack

Official Synopsis: Rob was already a successful business owner when he inherited over a million dollars and several valuable properties from his father. But after his father’s recent death, Rob, a former crack addict, picked up the pipe again after years of sobriety. In just 12 months, Rob has blown through 200k of his inheritance, has shut down his once thriving business, and now his wife and family fear for his life.

Date Aired:  July 2016
Interventionist:
Donna

Episode 215: Jonel

Season 15, Episode 15

Jonel
Age: 24
Location: Browning, Montana (Blackfeet Indian Reservation)
Addiction: Suboxone

What’s Memorable: The fact that the episode takes place on a reservation.  For one, it’s been a while since we’ve seen anyone profiled who isn’t white. (The racial & cultural diversity on this show is seriously lacking). Second, this episode was a bit of a historical and cultural education about why American Indians have a high rate of addiction and that suboxone is becoming a drug of choice. Third, Jonel’s mother explained that talking about what happens on the reservation to people on the outside is highly discouraged, so for this family to reach out to Intervention and be willing to talk about their family on TV shows how much they love her and need her to get help.  There is a lot of love in this family and it showed. So glad Jonel accepted treatment and stayed there long enough to get solid in her sobriety. That’s just what she needed.

Official Synopsis: Jonel was born into the Blackfeet Indian Tribe in Montana. When she was 9 months pregnant, her boyfriend was tragically killed in a car accident and then she gave birth to her daughter just days after the funeral. Shocked and grief stricken, Jonel began using suboxone and meth – two drugs that are rampant on the reservation. 14 months ago, Jonel gave birth to her second child who was born addicted to suboxone.

Date Aired:  July 2016
Interventionist: D
onna

Episode 214: Brian N.

Season 15, Episode 14

IMG_1868

Brian N.
Age: 43
Location: Miami, Oklahoma
Addiction: Alcohol

What’s Memorable: How much Oklahoma City still affects him, the strength it must have taken to do the job he did, his wife having to drive herself to the hospital when she was in labor because he was passed out. Also, the distant vacancy on his face when he’s drunk and the way he reacts to his mother taking care of him. Some of the things she said really struck me – calling him ‘white trash’ and his internet date ‘some floozy’ – and make me wonder if there were class expectations set for Brian that he struggled to live up to.

Official Synopsis: Brian had it all. He married his high school sweetheart, had two beautiful children, and became the owner/director of his family’s successful funeral home in Oklahoma. But while assisting with the recovery of bodies during the Oklahoma City bombings – including those in the building’s nursery – Brian fell apart and turned to alcohol for comfort and never turned back. He’s now lost his wife, kids, and career due to his addiction, and his family feels that at the rate he’s going, the next funeral will be for him.

Note: The above ‘official synopsis’ from A&E has some details and the sequence of events out of order, and it really creates a different story than reality. He didn’t start drinking heavily right after Oklahoma. He was a 21 year old apprentice when the tragedy happened and became owner/director of his own funeral home years later, and that’s when the drinking got bad.  I feel like that’s an important difference.

Date Aired:  July 2016
Interventionist:
Jeff

Episode 213: Alicia

Season 15, Episode 13

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Alicia
Age: 29
Location: I missed the location. Accents sound like New York City though. Staten Island maybe?
Addiction: Heroin

What’s Memorable: The nodding off, the going to work pretending to read papers that were blank, answering the phone with eyes pretty much closed, the family dinner. I’ve seen and experienced this before but it really hit home for me in this episode: addicts understand that they’re affecting their families, they just prefer not to think about it and when they do, it makes them want to be high. Addiction is a sick self-perpetuating cycle. The more addicted you are the more shitty you get, the more shitty you get the more guilty you feel, the more guilty you feel the more drugs you think you need to do. Repeat Repeat. Also Jeff nailed co-dependency with this simple line: “She’s being protected from the negative consequences of her actions.” And that followup, it’s one of the best I’ve ever seen.

Official Synopsis: With a booming family business that could one day be hers, Alicia’s future looked bright. But reconnecting with her biological father sent Alicia down a path of pain and self-destruction that has led to a full-blown addiction to heroin and Xanax.

Date Aired:  July 2016
Interventionist:
Jeff

Episode 212: Daniel M.

Season 15, Episode 12

danielM

Daniel M.
Age: 43
Location: Laguna Niguel, California
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)

What’s Memorable: This one is painful. Taking care of someone who could literally die if they don’t get alcohol into their system is beyond exhausting and constantly terrifying. Making sure they have enough alcohol in order to stay alive another day while knowing that you’re helping them stay addicted, it’s just too much. And then also having to watch them take a bunch of pills that could easily result in an overdose and not being able to do anything about it? No one should ever have to deal with that kind of turmoil. I have nothing but empathy for Sandi and their family and friends. They did what they had to do to keep him alive, and calling Intervention may have been the thing that actually saved his life.  I really hope so, he has a lot to live for and his family deserves to be happy.

Official Synopsis: Daniel is a well-respected Paranormal expert. However, his sensitivity leaves him tormented by those entities needing to cross to the other side. Daniel is now consuming a gallon of vodka per day to quiet the voices. That, combined with easy access to pain meds and opiates Daniel takes for his lupus diagnosis, has left him spiraling out of control. His family fears that it is only a matter of time before he is lost inside a world he cannot escape.

Date Aired:  June 2016
Interventionist:
Candy

Episode 211: Ginjer

Season 15, Episode 11ginjer-intervention

Ginjer
Age: 28
Location: St Augustine, Florida
Addiction: Dilaudid

What’s Memorable: First of all, Ginjer is awesome. So self-aware, honest, smart, funny. One of the most likable addicts this show has profiled. I think sobriety will suit her well and she’s gonna make a great life for herself. That said, I was not a fan of the way this episode was edited. They focused almost entirely on the whole sugar baby thing which, as upsetting as it was, was likely not the only aspect of her addiction that was worth showing. There was very little interaction with her family, so it’s hard to know how it affected them or how invested they were in her getting sober. Did the audience really need to witness multiple client interactions? Not to mention the audio – I can’t even believe they’re doing that now. This isn’t a show that’s supposed to titillate viewers and I really think they focused on that aspect of Ginjer’s story for that reason – because it was provocative. Come on A&E, we know you can do better than that, and you certainly could have done better by Ginjer.

Official Synopsis:  Ginjer is a professional Sugar Baby who trolls ‘dating’ websites to maintain a severe Dilaudid addiction. Once a top contender to become a Naval Officer, Ginjer has fallen so far that she juggles ‘men who pay’ to keep the drugs flowing. Ginjer’s family is desperate, fearing she is on the fast track to an early death.

Date Aired:  June 2016
Interventionist: 
Ken

Episode 210: Daniel & Robert

Season 15, Episode 7

Daniel and Robert
Age: 30 and 31
Location: Westfield, Massachusetts 
Addiction: Heroin

What’s Memorable: Oof. This is a tough one but also hugely satisfying. The ugly situation at their dad’s house, the bedroom Daniel & Renee live in, the heated custody fight between the grandparents in the intervention room, Renee refusing to admit to using drugs but still going to treatment (no surprise that she had to address an eating disorder, she was scary skinny). These three people were all so damn sick, and all of them went to treatment and got healthy. Intervention saves lives.

Official Synopsis:  

Date Aired:  April 2016
Interventionist:  
Jeff

Episode 209: Karissa

Season 15, Episode 6

karissa

Karissa
Age: 28
Location: Central Square, New York
Addiction: Heroin

UPDATE: Karissa Hilts was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Florida on March 8, 2017. By all accounts she was sober at the time. Here is her obituary.

What’s Memorable: Despite her intimidating and manipulative behavior, Karissa is still somehow very likable. It’s not a mystery why she became an addict given her childhood traumas, but it’s clear that if she wasn’t addicted she would be such a cool person to be around. Also: That family diner has such personality, but it was disturbing to me what the non-family employees had to deal with everyday. I mean that’s a borderline abusive working environment, having to be witness to all that and pretend to not be affected.  The idea that Karissa thinks she’s a ‘functional junkie’ because she gets up in the morning to go to work shows how deluded she is about what “functional’ means.  Leaving work to go lie to the doctor in order to get Suboxone and immediately selling it for 10 bags of heroin and then needing people to stay up watching you all night with an overdose kit at hand because they’re afraid you’ve taken too many benzos with your heroin and you might die – that is not functional.  I’m so glad Karissa made it and as of February 2016 is still sober.  She deserves such a better life.

Official Synopsis:  Karissa was always a talented cook – so much so, that her mother had one day hoped to pass the family diner down to her as a legacy. But Karissa’s life took a drastic turn when a close family friend fed her Oxycodone, and then ultimately made her a drug courier. From there Karissa was lost. Now, years of self-abuse, self-medication, and a severe addiction to heroin have left her volatile and desperate. Her family fears that if she does not heal from her violent past and the childhood she lost, she will never have the future she deserves.

Date Aired:  April 2016
Interventionist: 
Sylvia (who rocked this one)

 

Episode 207: Anne and Digger

Season 15, Episode 4

digger

anne

Digger & Anne
Age: 34 and 29
Location: Weaverville, California
Addiction: Heroin

What’s Memorable: Their toxic relationship and what they show to their children – it’s just very, very ugly. There is so much addiction in and surrounding this family and the impact it’s all had on Blaze is remarkable.  She’s a truly incredible, unbelievably perceptive person who knows way too much about how fucked up adults are.

Official Synopsis: Digger and Anne are husband and wife–and both are addicted to heroin. Intervening on addicted couples is incredibly difficult; and Digger and Anne’s situation is complicated further by other addicts in the family. Their three young children are in danger of losing both parents if the couple does not get help soon.

Date Aired:  March 2016
Interventionist:
Ken

Episode 206: Kacy

Season 15, Episode 3

kacy

 

Kacy
Age: 39
Location: Garrison, North Dakota
Addiction: Alcohol (vodka)

What’s Memorable: Given the dramatic spiral from success to rock bottom, non-functional alcoholism, it’s a shame the show didn’t spend a little more time on how Kacy got to this place she’s in now. The trauma she endured and how it affected it her deserved more than what felt like a mention in passing. Seemed like the producers were overly focused on the shock factor of how bad her addiction was. Anyway, a few things she said gave me chills. “I’m scared to death…of not having the next drink.” And when she’s walking home from the liquor store in her pajamas, talking about how just having the alcohol in the house calmed her down and made her feel like it was gonna be okay. Yeah. I can relate to that.  The followup was brutal, I wish there was more information given about what put her in the hospital.

Official Synopsis: A successful businesswoman who became a multimillionaire in her 20’s, Kacy tragically lost her infant child to SIDS. She then lost her fortune, her marriage and a healthy relationship with her surviving children as she spiralled into binge drinking. Now penniless, she is hospitalised multiple times a month, and her family is desperate to save her life.

Date Aired:  March 2016
Interventionist:
Candy

Episode 205: Sierra

Season 15, Episode 2


Sierra
Age: 19
Location: Redding, California
Addiction: Meth

What’s Memorable: Everything is memorable. Her eyes, her bare feet, how the words coming out of her mouth mean something to her and nothing to anyone else.  Every person in her entire support system is an addict in recovery and she felt like she needed war stories but then couldn’t handled them when they happened. Sierra’s brain cannot deal with drugs. Donna shows up for this one in a big way. I don’t think that any other interventionist could have done this intervention better than she did.

Official Synopsis: The daughter of a small business owner, Sierra was an honor student with dreams of college and a career in journalism. But when a double-dealing artist charmed his way into her mother’s life, he gambled away their home and the bottom fell out of Sierra’s world, leading to a frightening drug-induced psychotic break. Today, the 19-year-old is a feral junkie, scrapping for a fix on the streets of Northern California.

Original Air Date: March 2016
Interventionist: Donna

Episode 204: Kaeleen

Season 15, Episode 1

image1 (1)


Kaeleen
Age: 25
Location: Helena, Montana
Addiction: Alcohol, benzos

What’s Memorable: The opening video diary cam segment, the anorexia photos, how messy and disoriented she gets, the admission to her mom that she sleeps with guys for alcohol money, stumbling down the street after getting booted from a dive bar, trying to convince her ex boyfriend to let her come over. And that cop? Not trained well.

Official Synopsis: Musically gifted, intelligent, and beautiful, everyone assumed Kaeleen was destined for great things. But what nobody knew was that from age four to eleven, Kaeleen was methodically sexually abused. Now Kaeleen lives in her own world of mental anguish. To numb the pain, she self medicates with opiates and alcohol. Her family knows that without help, this girl with so many gifts is destined for an early death.

Original Air Date: March 2016
Interventionist: Ken

 

 

 

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