Season 4, Episode 19
Location: Newport, Rhode Island
Addiction: Inhalants (computer duster)
What’s Memorable: This one comes in 2nd as the most famous episode (after Cristy (Season 2), mostly due to the “I’m walkin on sunshine!” soundbite. 10 cans of duster a day is completely insane and she’s just out of it. I think what’s most shocking about this episode is that she survived this addiction.
Update: Allison continues to do really well in recovery. You can follow her on Twitter here. She’s an inspiration.
Legacy Update: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L-jp3bgyUCo
Official synopsis: She was a pre-med student on her way to becoming a surgeon, but the trauma of being molested as a child and her parents’ brutal divorce haunted Allison. She started to inhale computer dust remover, which is potentially fatal with each breath. Her erratic behavior and absence from classes got Allison dropped from the pre-med program. Allison is currently inhaling up to ten cans of dust remover a day. Can interventionist Jeff help Allison and her family?
Original Air Date: August 2008
She’s in Rhode Island and has a twitter account & is clean & doing awesome it seems!
Plus, she got her kitty cats back. Yay!!!!
Yes!!! I’ve always wondered about that. That episode always makes me BAWL because that would be the one threat that would work with me, too. In an update she said something about how people would probably think that was weird, but I got it completely. I’m thrilled to hear she got them back!!!
Seriously, she is alive?? I thought she walked right into the Sunshine!
They just showed this one last night. I haven’t seen it since it first aired and is still just ask shocking. Especially when she says, “I don’t care if I sacrifice the life of anyone else. I need it now.” Glad to hear she is still sober and doing well.
Definitely the most shocking. but this girl had personality plus. im so happy to hear shes doing well. how much of that stuff have u huffed today? Allison: your momma. lmao……..btw whoever u are im glad u have this directory. i can find out more from you about these addicts than i can on the a&e website. Im probably driving u nuts with all my comments. but please keep on doing it!
The town was Newport, RI.
I rewatched this episode for about the 10th time earlier and it stills hits home. The look of betrayal on her face as she’s led out of her room in cuffs is a look I know well. To go through such pain and come out on the other side a better person is so difficult, but Allison did it and it gives me hope for myself. I hope I can have the courage to get better from my trauma and addictions the way she did. I also want to give huge compliments to Allison’s younger sister for the way she confronted her during the intervention, and the way she comforted Allison during the removal of her cats and her being taken into custody. I know those things can’t have been easy, but it was necessary and doing it helped save her sister’s life. Just a great episode all around, one of the top 5 ever IMO.
Saw this episode and im glad your doing fine..your a beautiful lady with aalot of life. .it’s great to see you smile. Laughing. Will b thinking about you. .all ways smile. .
I felt bad for laughing a couple of times during this episode, but I also already knew that she accepted treatment and is a success story.
When Jeff says “We’re gonna bust the cats.”
Happy to see Allison is doing well.
“We are gonna bust these cats”! Desperate times call for desperate measures I guess lol
Also when Allison responds to her a question her sister asks with “your mama.”
Also also, she looked great with blonde hair!
Hahah this has been an inside joke between my brother and I now after watching this episode. “We’re gonna bust the cats” had us dying!!
She’s doing well, but her keyboard is filthy 😀
I follow her on Facebook and wow, what a true transformation. She posted this recently and it does give some insight on her journey as well as her past and the abuser. Which was a complete shock to me:
Allison appears to still be sober by according to her Facebook (which is public and verified) she cut off her entire family and has had to ask the public for help via a GoodFundMe page.she talks a lot about no one being there for her and not being able to count on her family. Some friends of her comment saying they try calling her and she doesn’t return calls or texts. She may not be using but she is certainly struggling.
I’ll start by saying this – I’m friendly with Allison. NO, she did not cut off her entire family. Not by a long shot. They have given her ZERO room for error in life, so anytime there is a life issue (like a broken car transmission or stress from her job) they immediately jump to conclusions and accuse her of using again. She had enough and decided to move forward with her life, with or without her family and they were welcome to join her as long as they dropped the stigma that goes hand in hand with mental health issues. She never decided to move on with her life without her family. She moved FORWARD. She is sober and doing okay and just trying to get through life like the rest of us, but her family needs to cut the bs and give her a second chance like they promised 10 years ago. Again, she had ENOUGH. Check out her twitter if you don’t believe me. You can see exactly what her mom said to her the other day. Not exactly the most accepting mother in the world. So please everybody stop thinking she cut people out of her life and that she is “struggling.” She hit a non-drug related rough patch and literally had nobody to turn to for help – so she realized she had to help herself and that’s just what she did.
Wow What an inspiration.. you are a REAL PERSON. MAN ARE YOU BEAUTIFUL AS WELL, SO GLAD YOU ARE STILL IN THE WORLD.
Allison is the addict I relate to the most (along w/Dallas I would say…) I checked her social media & am so glad to see she is still doing well.
allison celebrated 10 years of sobriety as of may 8 (i believe?), and is currently obtaining her PhD. woman deserves major props!!!
She was in Newport, Rhode Island. The cemetery was Island Cemetery on Warner Ave in Newport, also the cop states she would be taken to Newport Hospital
I posted a comment here 3 years ago and wanted to do so again, since I’ve been thinking about Allison lately as I continue to struggle with my own issues. I know I and many other viewers are so proud of her for all the things she’s accomplished since her episode was filmed, and for being such a strong woman committed to using her experience to help others. There are so many times each week that I just want to give up, but thinking about what she has been through and how she worked hard to get better and continues to do so helps me feel able to hang on. I hope she knows what a gift she’s given to others in leading by example to become a healthier, more stable person and reclaiming her life free from addiction and getting help to heal from trauma. Thank you so much, Allison, for being who you are.
Allison has been through so much, not only in her history/trauma and drug addiction, but also with bullying, people misjudging her, and family issues in her sobriety. A strong woman for sure.
i’m so glad she’s doing better. she seems so sweet now. but during the show i found her very weird. she always had this bizarre tortured look on her face. and she i’m sure really was tortured, but overall, i found her very odd and strange in general. here’s her most recent FB. i don’t know if she got remarried as her last name is smith now and it looks like, from comments above, that it used to be medeiros fogarty? https://www.facebook.com/allison.Marie149
Brooke, the “odd and strange behavior” was obviously because of the drug addiction she had during the filming of the episode. Same for the “bizarre and tortured look”. Not really sure why I have to point that out to you but perhaps your unfamiliar with how substance abuse and extreme trauma (especially when intertwined) affect people until they start getting better. Going forward keep this mind and remember no one thinks they will grow up to be an addict.
Allison is still a struggling mess. Very thin, posting about becoming homeless with sick cats on yet ANOTHER GoFundMe to pay the rent on her apartment, that she does not share with a roommate, in an expensive area. Allison is not working. She is also now claiming to be an agoraphobic and cannot leave her apartment to go to the food bank. She spent the holidays posting on her new Facebook page “inner source solutions” how her family has all turn their backs and won’t help her avoid homelessness. Every few month like clockwork, Allison is posting a new GoFundMe with the hopes on enlisting financial help from strangers so as she doesn’t have to do any of the necessary leg work in order to benefit her situation.
Hi Kenneth! Thanks for the update. I checked out her facebook and all I can say is WOW! Unbelievable. People are calling her out on there too. She managed to get her goal for the rent plus a few extra bucks. All of those who are donating are only just enabling her,
I just about died when I saw the first post on there, She wants someone to buy her the litter box for her cat and included the link on where to buy it.
BTW, she does look very skinny. I think she would benefit from getting some mental help (seriously). She has issues and obviously can’t handle them too well.
I’m sorry to see her the way she is now. Did she just relapse because I see she got her 11 year coin back in May?
I don’t think she’s using duster again but she might be starving herself. If you rewatch the episode at the beginning it states that she’s struggled with annorexia and self harm. I hope she gets help soon because she seems to be the recluse she once was. I feel so bad for her. I hope she’s able to get back on her feet.
She probably has brain damage from doing duster, it causes permanent brain damage. I no she’s gone to college and completed many courses, but the brain damage could be an any part of her brain and she can have issues with whatever she’s going through but still be able to take classes and past classes I wish her well.
Why are you weirdos stalking these people on social media. Seems pretty intrusive.
From her Go Fund Me page (https://www.gofundme.com/f/39w85y-emergency):
Good morning, all. I am ashamed that once again in the gap of switching jobs I haven’t been able to purchase food, (some lovely people got the kittens some food, thank you!), rent, and kitten care. So far i have put aside a chunk of the money, but in finding out this morning one of the kittens needs some dental surgery! I can’t begin to tell you my embarrassment to keep reaching out, but I am trying my hardest to land this new job so I can never bother you hard-working-folks again. I have such gratitude for those that have helped me over the years and believe me, if I didn’t have $0.60 in my account, I would never put up this ad, but just THANK YOU. My level of gratitude is beyond humongous. Please help little kitten and the rest goes to my rent. I cannot thank you all enough.
Indeed, as someone referred to, one of the notes is “Would anyone be able to get my kitten’s litter box on chewy.com???” Another is “EMERGENCY: tomorrow is rent day and I am $1000 short despite having 2 jobs. Please help me.”
Her Linkedin profile shows that she has many, many jobs that only lasted a few months: https://www.linkedin.com/in/allison-fogarty-58727789
Allison has two children. At the time she wrote this, she had regained custody and they had lived with her for 7 years.
The episode left out a lot of information about Allison’s childhood. Anytime they refer to “alleged” abuse I assume it’s because the perpetrator has threatened legal action. The vast majority of the time, they just state that the person was sexually assaulted.
“As a child I grew up in an abusive household: emotional, physical, and sexual, with the predator still living in our house. At the time we lived in Saudi Arabia, where the women and children must have the husband’s permission to leave the country. We were held hostage, as the abuser was the male head of the household. We finally returned to my home state of Rhode Island where the battle continued. I had to testify in court on seeing a sister of mine being molested when I was 6, and when the court case came to an end, the abuser was awarded supervised visitation; the supervisors being his parents…When that visitation first began (age 9) every time I would eat I would get physically ill, yet this only happened every other weekend during the visitation.”
Wow I didn’t even know she had kids. I knew her dad moved to the Middle East after divorcing her mom but I didn’t know they actually lived in Saudi Arabia themselves. That would explain why nothing was done to the man that abused them.
It appears as though the part mentioning children was written by Megan Krause, not Allison. She only wrote the one article about duster.
Huh, that is kind of confusing as to who her abuser was…male head of household implies father…did I miss something?
Nah, that first article mentioning 2 kids wasn’t written by Allison, but another former addict. Allison doesn’t have children.
I was thinking the same thing. And if it was indeed her father who molested her and her sister, it would make some sense of the fact that his entire side of the family rejected Allison and her sister over the “allegations”… and the abuser was granted visitation, so likely a family member/guardian of the girls. I guess it could be an uncle or something if her family was staying with them in Saudi Arabia.
But either way, the “babysitter” thing on the show sounds like it was kind of a euphemism for what really happened, and she (or her family, or the show…) avoided identifying the actual perpetrator for some reason. Clearly he wasn’t found guilty, so I guess that complicates what she’s able to say on air?
Podcast with Allison + transcript of highlights
I read that essay about her trauma and recovery… she has children with one of the ex-husbands?! I am shocked the show left that out. Even though “reality tv” is known for their “clever” edits, that would seem to be something they’d not want to miss. I suppose if everyone interviewed refused to talk about it, the producers’ hands were tied. Otherwise, that is an odd thing to purposefully leave out.
The sexual abuse Allison and her sister suffered as children may have been in Rhode Island. She kind of meshed the stories of living in Saudi Arabia and moving back to the states, making it difficult to follow along, but it kind of sounds likes she’s saying they wen from one hell (Saudi Arabia) to another (Rhode Island) because of the abuse.
I hated her mother for minimizing the abuse they endured, and on the update episode, I thought Allison should get as far away from her mother as possible. Insufferable woman based on both episodes. I had hoped her sisters could be a support. Was also relieved when I learned her cats were reunited with her.
Do we have confirmation the two children Allison wrote about really are her biological children? She’s not the most reliable narrator, and I wonder if they were young step-children she no longer got to see. All the crowd-funding and inability to maintain gainful employment does make one wonder how much “recovery” she’s in. I hope she can has support for her mental health. That’s a tough road, and I wonder if the persistent higher learning in psychology is almost a coping mechanism.
Also, one of her latest Twitter updates says she has “13 years,” implying sobriety, but the show said April 2008, so subtracting that from May 2020 (when she wrote it) would be 12 years. Hmm.
She doesn’t have children that article was written by another user about their story idk 🤷🏽♀️ why she confused the two! But Allison only has cats even her social media she talks heavily about her cats NO KIDS!!! Lol hope this helps..
I forgot how much this episode of South Park parodied Allison’s episode. I wonder what she thought of it:
this was definitely the wildest episode i’ve ever seen! i sincerely hope she got her cats back when she got sober – i felt for her a lot during that time, but to be honest, i kind of wish police would do this with more addicts’ pets – speaking as a former one myself (addict, not pet), i don’t believe we can ever be adequate carers for animals while using. regardless, happy for allison! she’s so strong and overcame so much!
Her followup confirmed that she did indeed get her cats back.
I was addicted to air duster too doing up to 12 Cans a day for two years, I don’t know how I’m alive or not brain damaged but I’ve been sober for 8 years now
In case no one has said this to you lately (and even if they have) I’m proud of you <3
Just wanted to tell you how proud I am of you to be alive and sober. I think it’s so much harder to quit something that is easily and legally available because it’s in your face more often than an illegal substance would be.
She lived in Rhode Island, in or near Newport, since this grave she visited (linked) is in a cemetery in Newport, the police were from Newport and they took her to Newport Hospital.
Link to grave: https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/15038516/mary-l.-lawton
I love how successful Allison became after her intervention. So incredibly proud of how far she has come!
Although I know people are addicted to duster, it’s not widely spoken about nor is getting treatment for it. It’s legal, easily available, in-expensive (based on how much you do and compared to illegal drugs) and that’s what makes it even more dangerous in a way. Big Brother (the government) got involved when OTC meds were being used to make Meth. So now today, if I want a certain kind of Claritan, I have to ask the pharmacist and give them my driver’s license so they can send it to Big Brother. But, I can walk into the same store (like Walmart for example) and buy a case of duster everyday. Please make it make sense????
A couple of years ago, a woman from the next town over from me was arrested THREE times in ONE DAY over being high on duster! She’s been arrested many times before when high like a kite due to car accidents, trying to steal a tractor trailer, jumped in a creek to getaway, and so much more that I can name but won’t. You just can’t make this shit up. I wouldn’t have believed it if it wasn’t for the fact that it happened in my town and was all over the news because it was so shocking. For those who can’t believe it, I’ll give you the link on this story because I wouldn’t believe me either if I didn’t see proof.
Please note: I am NOT posting this story to shame this woman but to actually bring awareness on how serious of a problem this can be. Since her name and record is public knowledge, is why I see nothing wrong with posting this. Again, it’s not to publicly shame her but to bring awareness.
Here’s one of many arrests and public knowledge:
I haven’t checked recently on how she’s doing but as of last time that I did, she wasn’t doing too good. I’m hoping she’s well now because she does have a child.
Allison’s episode deeply touched me, and has stuck with me as a reminder to not return to inhalants. I related so much to her story. Nitrous oxide was my DOC, as opposed to computer duster, but still an inhalant nonetheless. My addiction to it was instant, just like Allison’s addiction to duster; a friend introduced it to me one evening, and I was hooked immediately. My addiction quickly led to me exchanging sexual favors for an endless supply of NO2 containers, which at its worst was ~ $3-5k a month habit, which meant about 10-20 boxes of NO2 cartridges daily. My behavior was similar to Allison; I’d spend all day long chasing the initial high inhalants provide (a few seconds of pure ecstasy, followed by a very harsh comedown & intense urges to “just take one more hit”), fade in and out of consciousness, slur my speech 24/7, and was never truly in my right mind for years. From the second I woke up to the second I fell asleep, my whole day revolved around finding a way to do more inhalants, and I didn’t care how much I hurt or killed myself in the process. I’ve been three years clean from NO2 now, and I don’t regret seeking sobriety from it one bit. This is an addiction that isn’t discussed much, and often times even people in the “drug community” joke about how inhalants aren’t really that bad/addictive, but speaking from someone who got sucked into a full-blown, life-altering addiction to NO2 during my late teens to early 20s, it is very much real, and recovery from the substance is very possible.
I was watching some old Kathy Griffin stand-up and was shocked to see that she referenced Allison’s episode (in addition to he who we don’t speak of):
All – she was arrested for assultt with a deadly weapon!!! https://www.localcrimenews.com/welcome/detail/76293241/allison-fogarty-arrest.html
Allison even if you were arrested I don’t care, I love you and think you’re hilarious and smart and beautiful and INTERESTING, most people bore me.
Someone mentioned on the comments that she claims she’s an agoraphobic. she probably is. I was and agoraphobic and so was my sister for many years. We both suffer from OCD. Agoraphobia is a serious mental illness. What she needs is to go on disability for her mental illnesses until she can get on the right medication. She mentions that she can’t afford her medications or doctor appointments, but if she’s on Medi-Cal it pays for both. If she doesn’t want to go on disability she can still apply for Medi-Cal and should be approved as she’s not working and doesn’t have an income. This will help her to pay rent but she’ll probably have to move to a cheaper apartment. I wish her well, please Allison if you read this there are resources in California and it doesn’t take long to get Medi-Cal, disability takes a while but you get back payments for all the years since you applied. If you moved out of California there still are Medicaid resources and Federal disability if you don’t have a state disability, but I looks like you’re still in California. I am from California so I know all about the resources here. Please Allison look into these resources and I wish you a life full of health, peace, love, acceptance, and happiness! You can achieve this if you reach out to resources and are able to get on the right medication‘s, you can do this you did so much with your education and that takes a lot to accomplish! ❤️🙏🏼
I will never get over the way she crawled on those cops like a spider monkey