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Season 6

This category contains 14 posts

Episode 86: Jeff

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Jeff
Age: 40
Location: Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada
Addiction: Alcohol (beer)
What’s memorable: You know, what’s interesting about Jeff is that his addiction was so clearly a direct result of a traumatic work-related incident. It wasn’t just exacerbated by it, it was CREATED by it as a response to the trauma. He was a hero and family man until this one thing, and now he’s lost everything. It’s lovely how much his firefighter friends are looking after him even as he pushes them away, and it’s harrowing how he can see himself losing everything and can’t stop it. This is one episode that truly frightens me, in that any one of us can experience something so profoundly traumatizing that we can at any time become a sad tragic person in need of an intervention.

Here’s an interesting article about Jeff’s story in relation to firefighting PTSD.

Official Synopsis: Forty-year-old Jeff was once known as a heroic firefighter after he saved his partner’s life. But Jeff was traumatized by the harrowing event, and his drinking increased drastically. Jeff has received two DUI’s and been rushed to the hospital numerous times for seizures. Jeff’s alcoholism has also forced his son and wife to move out. Now his family’s last hope is that an intervention will stop Jeff from drinking himself to death.
Original Air Date: June 2009

Episode 93: Bret

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Bret
Age: 43
Location: Tampa,Florida
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s memorable: Bret was in a strange denial – he admitted to being addicted to alcohol, felt the addiction, but was convinced that he didn’t actually drink that much and he didn’t seem to see the health and family consequences of his drinking. His son is absolutely heartbreaking. And, of course, the follow-up is shocking and sad.

Official Synopsis: Now 43, Bret once had a promising career in real estate. But the stress to make more money to provide for his family took its toll, and Bret became an alcoholic. Two years ago, Bret’s family held an intervention and sent him to rehab programs, but he relapsed. His wife finally divorced him, he lost his job, and he continues to be totally focused on drinking.
Original Air Date: July 2009

Episode 92: Nikki

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Nikki
Age: late 30’s?
Location: New York City
Addiction: Methadone with anti-anxieties (benzos)
What’s memorable: How attached Nikki’s younger daughter is to her despite never really having a good relationship with her, the boyfriend who certainly cares but also seems to need her to be messed up in order to feel needed.

Official Synopsis: When she was young, Nikki’s mother and grandmother worked hard to give her a good life. Nikki excelled in school, but she was devastated when her grandmother died. She began hanging out with a rebellious crowd, skipping school, and using crack. Nikki eventually had two daughters, but has remained addicted to drugs. Her daughters desperately want to have a relationship with Nikki, and know that an intervention is their only hope of saving their mother’s life.
Original Air Date: July 2009

Episode 90: Donald

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Donald
Age: late 30’s?
Location: Mastic, Long Island, New York
Addiction: Crack, alcohol
What’s memorable: Did you know that the mix of crack and alcohol results in more deaths than any other 2-drug combination? I didn’t know that before this episode. It’s surprising actually. I woulda thought maybe heroin and xanax, or pain meds and alcohol. ANYWAY, Donald seems like a thoroughly decent and caring guy who just can’t stay away from crack when life becomes just too hard for him to deal with (and things have certainly been hard, no doubt about it). He has a lot to lose and a lot to look forward to, I hope he was able to stay sober.

Official Synopsis: When he was five, Donald’s parents divorced. He longed for a strong father figure, but his father had very little contact with him. Donald became a gifted boxer, but ultimately chose drugs over his career. He joined a violent gang and turned to stealing to support his crack habit. Now his son is angry because Donald wasn’t there for him growing up. Donald’s girlfriend just had a baby and Donald has a second chance to be a good father, but his crack use is spiraling out of control.
Original Air Date: June 2009

Episode 99: Marci

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Marci
Age: late 30’s?
Location: Chico, California
Addiction: Meth, pain meds
What’s memorable: The seriously high-speed crazy stuff she says that makes absolutely no sense to anyone else. Her in-denial mother and dying brother. How shockingly different she was as a wife and mother just a few years ago.

Official Synopsis: To outsiders, Marci’s family life seemed ideal. But while her mother worked, Marci was left home with her alcoholic father. She endured his abuse while her mother looked the other way. Marci began drinking and doing drugs. Her marriage failed, and she lost custody of her children. But her mother still denies that Marci has a bad problem. Can an intervention help Marci and her mother to stop their dangerous behavior before it’s too late?
Original Air Date: September 2009

Episode 95: Danielle

Danielle Season 6 Episode 95

Danielle
Age: 33
Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Addiction: Percocet, Self-injury (cutting, burning)
What’s memorable: 50 percs a day! Damn, girl. But Danielle is severely clinically depressed and suicidal and genuinely believes that she needs these pills in order to not kill herself. Also memorable: the husband who is still there because he made a commitment and will take care of her no matter what, the alcoholic dad who now drinks 10 weeks a year, and the mother who gives her her own legitimately prescribed percocet.

Official Synopsis: Although she has two loving children and an adoring husband, Danielle is dangerously addicted to Percocet. As a teen, Danielle felt neglected by her alcoholic father and began cutting herself. Now she spends each day hiding behind closed curtains, ignoring her children, and self-medicating with up to 40 Percocet a day. An intervention is the last chance Danielle’s children have to get their mother back.

Original Air Date: July 2009

Interventionist: Jeff

Episode 89: Jason

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Jason
Age: 28
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

Episode 98: Gloria

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Gloria
Age: 53
Location: Bay Area, California
Addiction: Alcohol
What’s Memorable: Given the number of years Gloria has been an alcoholic, and her denial of having a problem, it was absolutely shocking that she agreed to treatment and then actually got sober. Probably the most surprising “yes, I’ll go” that I’ve seen.

Official synopsis: At 53, Gloria prides herself on being a good cook and an independent, fun-loving woman. But Gloria uses her cooking and charm to manipulate her family into letting her drink as much as she wants. Gloria had difficulty raising her children, and was married to an abusive man. At 42, Gloria got breast cancer and underwent chemotherapy and radiation but did not stop drinking. Now Gloria drinks and drives, misses work, and spends all her money on alcohol. Gloria’s family has had enough of her selfishness, and they’re ready for an intervention.
Original Air Date: August 2009

Episode 91: Sonia and Julia

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Sonia and Julia
Age: 23
Location: Columbia, South Carolina
Addiction: Anorexia
What’s memorable: Everything. It seems so clear that these two are addicted to each other, positively obsessed with each other, and not eating/being thin is just another way for them to compete. I mean they’ve obviously got a serious eating disorder, but it’s more obvious than usual that it is a symptom of much deeper emotional issues developed as a result of them never having had their own identities apart from being a twin. It’s such a sad story. I really hope they’re doing well now.

Official synopsis:  Identical twins Sonia and Julia, 22, shared everything as children and grew up in a loving home. Their parents emigrated from Poland and worked multiple jobs to send their children to the best schools. But now the family’s American Dream is turning into a nightmare as Sonia and Julia are withering away from anorexia. The sisters’ competitive spirit has turned to bitter rivalry and jealousy. And they’re so stricken with fear that the other will burn more calories that they never let each other out of their sight. Now their desperate parents seek help.
Original Air Date: June 2009

Episode 97: Sebastian and Marcel

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Sebastian and Marcel
Age: Sebastian 21, Marcel 20
Location: Palm Springs, California
Addiction: Heroin (black tar, smoked)
What’s memorable: So much! How awful and sick these kids look, how they take advantage of their parent’s kindness, the enabling in-denial sweetness of their father, selling drugs out of the house, the forgotten, ignored, caring older brother.

Note: Sebastian (on the right, above) died in April 2013. Link to memorial service video. 

Official synopsis: Sebastian, 21, and his brother Marcel, 20, were soccer celebrities in their town at a very young age. Cool and rebellious, Sebastian hung out with older teammates and started doing marijuana, cocaine and meth. Then Marcel got strung out on cocaine, Xanax and OxyContin, and also sold drugs. Now their older brother is angry, their mother feels betrayed, and their father is ready to give up his wife, his oldest son, and his own life to save them. An intervention is the last hope for the entire family.
Original Air Date: August 2009

Episode 96: Joey

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Joey
Age: 25
Location: Pittsburgh
Addiction: Heroin
What’s memorable: The sad, action-packed adventure intervention. Also memorable for me – He seems like he was probably a completely awesome guy when he was sober & in the program, before his latest relapse. The kind of guy you’d want as your sponsor, ya know?

Official synopsis:  With a terrifying addiction to heroin, Joey’s career as a tattoo artist is in jeopardy. His parents divorced when he was three. At 13, Joey started smoking marijuana and soon graduated to ecstasy, LSD, and heroin. When he stole his mother’s credit cards, she reluctantly filed charges and he went to jail. He has a daughter now, but the girl’s mother is afraid to let Joey be alone with her. An intervention is the only way to stop Joey from overdosing.
Original Air Date: August 2009

Episode 88 – Andrea

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Andrea
Age: 29
Location: Milwaukee
Addicted to: Alcohol (Rum)
What’s Memorable: Everything she’s given up in order to just hang out on the couch and drink, how dependent she is on her mother.

Official synopsis:  While Andrea was growing up, she yearned for a relationship with her mostly absent alcoholic father. During high school, she sought solace with her boyfriend, moved out and started a family at 19. Andrea soon became overwhelmed with parenting duties and turned to alcohol. As her drinking escalated she turned to the only person she felt would understand–her father. Four years ago, Andrea’s father passed away and her drinking has since spiraled out of control. Now, she is unable to raise her children and spends her days on her mother’s couch drinking.
Original Air Date: July 2009

Episode 88 – Aaron

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Aaron
Age: 30’s
Location: Southern California
Addicted to: Meth, Porn, Sex
What’s Memorable: The amount of time he spends watching porn, the things his wife has had to do in order for him to maintain his addictions.

Official synopsis:  Aaron was a mixed martial arts champion, but at the height of his career he started working in adult films. Through the porn scene, Aaron was introduced to crystal meth. His daily habit took over and he lost both his film and fighting careers. He now spends his days using drugs and watching porn for hours on end, and his wife is at the end of her rope.
Original Air Date: July 2009

Episode 87: Gabe

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Gabe
Age: 20’s
Location: Portland, Oregon
Addicted to: Heroin, cocaine
What’s Memorable: Abandoned Indian street kid adopted by a white Christian couple who think that saving a poor dark boy is their ticket to heaven and their kids should live wholly by the Word of God. Who wouldn’t feel sorry for this guy? The dad is especially infuriating in his inability to connect with Gabe on any meaningful level due to his religious beliefs.

Official synopsis:  When he was three, Gabe’s mother abandoned him on the streets of Calcutta, but he was adopted by a young American couple. Gabe seemed happy in America, but he secretly felt like an outsider. In high school he started to rebel and resent his Christian upbringing. He began using marijuana and cocaine, and later graduated to heroin. Then he squandered all of the $37,500 he received after a car accident to support his drug habit. Now the family fears that without an intervention, Gabe’s addiction and depression will soon lead to his death.
Original Air Date: May 2009

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