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S1E1 Alyson

Season 1, Episode 1


Age: 27
Location: Can’t tell
Addicted to: Morphine, crack, marijuana
What is most memorable about this episode: Alyson stealing morphine from her dying father from a safe in his bedroom as he sleeps.

Official synopsis: Alyson was a White House intern and an award-winning student. She met a boy in college who showed her the world of drugs and she became an addict. Alyson now lives at home with her parents and is a heavy user of morphine and crack. She works hard to alienate herself from the people who love her. Alyson also takes painkillers from her dying father.
Original Air Date: March 2005

Interventionist: Jeff

All comments.

  1. Ash

    I believe Alyson lives in or around Corpus Christi, Texas. There is a specific scene when Alyson is going to a friend/drug dealer’s house to get a high. A road sign is shown stating which way to the USS Lexington, the Texas State Aquarium, etc. at that moment she’s in downtown Corpus.

  2. Marissa Robyn

    I would love to have an update and know how she’s doing today. Does anyone know??

    1. Ash

      Looks like she’s alive & well:

      I wish her all the best!

  3. Anonymous

    The sadness I feel that Alyson does not seem well. I searched her name “Alyson Markoff” which another commenter on this site left and found a few things. The Facebook is very sparse and inactive, as far as what’s accessible to the public. I found a blog with three entries saying she was diagnosed at 30 with bipolar and how now she also has schizoaffective. It must have been posted when she was about 34, also she talks about how she hears things and how other people don’t believe her hallucinations are real, they are extremely creepy poor thing. Probably if she hadn’t used drugs (especially the crack and marijuana which can severe aggravate psychotic tendencies) she might not be struggling with these mental issues. I think that blog was from ’12 and she said she was unemployed too. I also found a MySpace page with her work history (how a website gets that info is a mystery to me) which seems pretty accurate, and the last job she had was at a bar which is now closed, I think that was from a few years ago… So I don’t know what she’s up to now. You can find all this info pretty easily. I’m surprised she had a 9 month stay in treatment which A&E put her in, I know that during the intervention they said it would be 90 days so I wonder if the show payed for those extra months. She later went to a sober house and then go a job as a customer service rep (I think, or something entry level white collar like that). Her father passed away a couple years after the show, ’07, his obituary is online. I don’t know why this one speaks to me so much, maybe because I was also high achieving (still am! I’m gonna make something of my life I know it) and struggled with drugs in college but managed to make it through albeit it took me much longer than most. I dropped out a couple times due to drugs and emotional issues. Probably without the drugs i would have sucked it up with my emotional problems but the mix of drugs and mental problems is toxic. It scares me to think that I high achieving woman with a lot of family support as well as money would continue to struggle, I think unfortunately this is the mental illness aspect and it makes me profoundly sad. I feel lucky that my issues are under control and aren’t that bad. I don’t understand how she started hearing things in her 30s though, I thought that people manifest their mental illnesses in their early 20s, that’s why I think the drugs may have caused it. My final comment is that these high achieving families who put so much pressure on their brilliant kids when they are truly brilliant develop such high expectations for them that their lives end up not being really theirs anymore and then they start acting out when they grow sick of it. I have relatives like this and I worry that everything is fine now but I have witnessed passive aggressiveness from them in their teens and I pray that they will be alright once they are over 25. Alyson if you are reading this I hope the best for you, I think you’re really beautiful and I hope you can get the help you need for your illnesses which aren’t your fault. Even if you aggravated it with drug abuse the underlying mental illness was still there, plus using drugs and being mentally ill are like pees and carrots. It is hard to not want to feel better when there is something which works lying before you. Anyways, I truly hope the best for you and it breaks my heart to hear of your struggles. Sending good energy your way.

  4. Dhalia

    I finally understand what made me sad watching this after viewing it a second time. It is that during the invervention, when offered treatment, she unquestionably and happily says yes. Her sister said she had been stirring trouble and using for 4-6 years, so considering she dropped out probably when she was 21 or 22 and is 27 at the time of filming that would make sense. So for 4-6 years Alyson has been wanting help-I cannot assume otherwise because I refuse to believe that someone of her character/intelligence/ambition/emotional intelligence would not want it. It pains me to know it took so long… Her family seems well off but her father had been sick for a long time and I’m sure those bills definitely stacked up. And receiving a full scholarship was important as she could have returned to school to finish that last semester… but that would involve paying private school tuition (at least 15-20,000 dollars for a semester). So she felt “stuck” and her mental health deteriorating and simply begging for help albeit indirectly. Even her best friend (as the sub notes said) said she thought she was yelling for help. So it upsets me it took so long for Alyson to receive it.

    This speaks volumes about our broken health system in America. I know this was 2004/5 pre-Obama days but speaking from experience rehab is still limited even for those on Medicaid and then there are many restrictions and it’s not a long stay. If you wish you can find out a lot of info about her online, she had a blog w/ a few entries that is still up about her worsening mental health in 2012 which was kind of difficult to read. I don’t feel comfortable writing details about it on here. Well it’s sad and tragic. The sadness I felt when I read it. I hope Alyson is doing better these days. I had a partner once who was like her, there is something borderline nerdy about her which is cool and reminds me of the genius women like them share. I do feel Alyson is capable of a lot, not just intellectually but emotionally too because she wound up working for a recovery center as the person calling graduates for follow-ups. This was just after she finished treatment. I laerned this from the A&E follow up on her. She spoke of it fondly and it was clear she felt comfortable with her place in life. I hope she’s OK or better than OK. All the best for this beautiful soul.

    1. Ash

      Hey D, I’m not sure if you’re the one who posted above about checking the FB account – but I just tried the link & it has been deactivated. Of course this may just mean she’s decided to get off FB or, sadly, may have been getting too much attention. I wish her nothing but the best.

  5. Jordy

    This being the first episode of Intervention, I noticed a few things. Her father desperately wants her to get the help she needs, and it’s clear that he loves her very much, but towards the end of the Intervention, after she already agrees to go, he mentions how lonf the treatment is. Jeff had mentioned that he wouldn’t be bringing that up unless she asks, as it could deter her from going. Why would her father mention it? She had already agreed, and I find it strange that he would give her a reason to say no, UNLESS he’s got some unresolved, and very hidden codependency with her addiction. It was just odd. I’m glad she went anyway, as stated in a comment above, it’s obvious how badly she wanted help.

    Also, the introduction of Jeff as the “Interventionist” was hokey, and I’m glad they did away with introducing them as such. I get it, it was first episode, they had to introduce him in some way, but it probably bothered me the most bc he is my least favorite Interventionist. Just a thought.

    My final comment goes towards the end of the episode when Alyson arrives at the treatment center. It REALLY irked me that the guy that greeted her was almost GIVING her reasons not to go to treatment. “Are you sure you can handle this? It’s going to be a lot of work, I won’t put up with someone who isn’t going to do the work…” or something like that. What a deflating way to be welcomed to treatment. It’s a good thing Alyson WANTED to go to treatment, bc an intro like that for say, another addict such as Cristy or Jennifer (the alcohol) would have sent them right back out the door. Like “Hey, thanks! My family was only making me do this anyway, so bye!” I wonder if the production people were upset with his greeting. His attitude reminded me more like the stubborn, bullheaded step father’s and brothers we see as family members of the addicts in this show. I know they only showed him for a second, but that guy DOES NOT BELONG amongst addicts that don’t think they can overcome their addiction.


    Thank you for providing me a forum to let out my frustration with this episode.

    1. CC

      He was in such bad health he might not have been thinking clearly. And if he suffered from brain aneurysms he might have been heavily medicated to avoid the stress of the intervention. Just a guess. Bless this family.

    2. Nahrissa

      I know this comment was from years ago, but I just saw this episode today and I completely agree about the guy at the treatment center. He creeped me tf me out. “You look good. Once we take the drugs outta you, you might not feel so good.” And maybe it was just me, but Alyson looked sooo uncomfortable walking in. As Jordy said, if Alyson didn’t want treatment, she absolutely would have bailed. Wishing the best for Alyson and her family, I hope she was able to mend her relationship with her sister.

    3. Corleigh Addams

      Another thing they really improved in subsequent episodes was providing an overview of the individual’s background and the events and circumstances that led to addiction. They didn’t really go into Alyson’s past; they just said it was some guy she met at school who introduced her to drugs. In my experience working with people struggling with addiction, there is usually some personal or intergenerational trauma involved.

  6. Jeanette

    Last post on her instagram is from 1st January 2016

    1. Ash

      Did she look happy/healthy?

    2. Ellie

      What’s her Instagram account?

  7. Madeline

    I couldn’t find any info on Alyson, but it appears her father passed in 2007. Also, from the obituary, her sister’s husband appears to have passed as well. This family has been through so much. I hate it when one family has to handle so much.

  8. sway

    I found her instagram account if anyone is interested. She looks well.

  9. Dewey

    How do u know about her brother-in-laws death?


    1. Madeline

      I think I made a mistake. I confused Lt. for “late” rather than lieutenant.

  10. Dewey

    That’s good ????. This family has enuf problems. Hope Aly ris doing better

  11. Bryan Sitchler

    Aly. This is Bryan Sitchler. Please call me 512-913-9319

  12. Cassie Guerrero

    Says she’s been active as recent as this past May. Looks good in her pic.

  13. Jeanette

    Any news from Alyson? How is she? She had such a wonderful life ahead of her, I hope she’s doing well – and sober.

  14. Maz

    She posted recently on YouTube

  15. kpowell

    Found a more recent Facebook profile for her and she seems to be doing well given her diagnosis and circumstances.

    1. Maz

      Some pretty weird posts on her fb

  16. Beth Poste

    What exactly did Alyson “do so wrong” with her life that she couldn’t live with it through to her death? All I got was she quit college bc of a junkie bf and some research cites she was diagnosed as bipolar. I don’t really understand what she did that was “so wrong” though…?? I would just like nore info, if anyone knows!

    1. Britt

      Hey Beth, I wondered that too… but when I rewatched it just now: She steals medication her father needs, she let her boyfriend move in and steal from their house, her Mother has to do everything even though Alyson is right upstairs, and her sister seemed disgusted with her. I do think they should have explained that more too.

      Lord knows I’m an addict myself and her shame and guilt were so bad she kept using to not feel and that’s how it is for me too. It broke my heart because you can tell she’s highly intelligent, beautiful and was just trapped.

  17. Lu

    I just decided to watch through all the episodes (I can find) in order and just finished Alyson’s. Such a sad story. I found her Facebook and it does not look like she’s doing well. I hope she finds peace.

    1. Diane S.

      I just checked her Facebook right now, and her posts are very disturbing.

  18. Diane S.

    I just checked her Facebook page, and it looks like Alyson has completely lost her mind. Her posts are highly disturbing. Very sad.

    1. Lynn

      I just took a look, and her posts are a bit out there. hoping she is OK and clean, buts those videos suggest otherwise.

  19. Danny

    Seems Alyson is very unwell and is posting a lot of content on her Facebook. She is asking Biden to legalise drugs and says “psych drugs” don’t work. She says she is also self-medicating. Very sad. She is saying things (unironically) that she is god and has powers = delusions of grandeur. From her posts it seems she was held against her will in hospital recently. I hope she is able to trust and get better soon. The fact that she alleges she was abused in hospital is very concerning.

  20. T

    How devastating that she is still struggling. She just seems so lost and lonely from her posts. Addiction sucks. Almost 20 years later…

  21. Katie

    Oh man. I just read through all the comments before checking her Facebook for myself. It’s so bad, y’all. There is no way she is possibly doing ok in any way. Nearly as traumatizing as finding out about how bad things are with Cristy of season 2 🙁

  22. Marley

    It really pissed me off that they knew she was stealing pills yet the safe that you have to make sure your pills don’t get stolen is WIDEEEEE OPEN, while an extremely sick man and an addict are alone.

  23. Marley

    Her dad also really pissed me off. Like he wanted to keep her addicted or something. They weren’t trying to do anything to stop anything.

    1. Po

      The entire family – mom, dad and sister – seems to be quite dysfunctional.
      Dad is enabler, mom seems to not establish any healthy boundaries. The sister is confused within this dynamic and is full of resentment (it is not her responsibility to fix any of this though).
      Looks just like my family 12 years ago.
      It saddens me to the bones to see this girl still struggling after all this time

  24. Nivey

    I know the location says unknown but I believe it was New York. The father’s accent and also the mention of her bf being in jail on Rikers Island was a dead give away. Recently saw this episode again after many years, sad to see she’s still struggling over 20 years later. She has so much potential.

  25. Sarah

    I think I found another Facebook page for her:

    Much of it seems to be incoherent ramblings with grandiose ideas…I hope she is doing okay.

    1. Melissadiana1980

      she is in a rage about the police coming while denying she took her mom’s credit card. in another video she teaches how to stealth smoke in public with a nicotine vspe but goes on to say and anything else she smokes. we have the same mental illness and I used to rant and rave like this on cocaine, or when I ran out of it possibly. I’m so sad for her. schizoaffective bipolar is hard to live with. the medication creates all kinds of other problems while often being ineffective. you can’t live a full life and it absolutely does create depression, isolation. perfect storm to make someone throw in the towel and go back to their addiction.

  26. Jackie S.

    Wow. I come back and forth to this website to see how people are doing from time to time. This woman needs help. Her FB page is INSANE!!! I think she’s got wayyy more going on than drug problems although the psychosis could be a result of meth/crack. This chick needs to be committed before she hurts herself or someone else. And I’m in recovery myself so I’m sympathetic and empathetic.