Send Dizzy a Tip!

Buy Me a Coffee

The Heroin Hub: Chapter 6

Season 20, Episode 6

Location: Kensington area of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Official Synopsis: EJ’s lies and deceptions cause a rift in his family, as some continue to enable him while others holds a firm bottom line. Interventionist Ken Seeley intervenes on EJ, who must finally decide if he is ready to accept help and go to treatment. Janine, Nicole, Bill, Alana, Amanda and EJ give final updates about their recoveries and hopes for the future.

My thoughts:  This show, man. Damn. It’s not an exaggeration to say it saves lives because it does. Frequently. Five of them this season. Janine, Alana, Bill, Nicole (OMG NICOLE!), and EJ. Incredible. But not everyone can be saved by an intervention and quality treatment. Amanda’s followup was beyond heartbreaking.  She was so defeated, so resigned to suffer what she thinks is her fate, what she deserves. That “spiritual awakening” she says she’s waiting for isn’t actually anything more than acknowledging to yourself that you’ve suffered enough and that you want to live a better life.  It’s not that complicated and it’s not that mystical. I think it might be one of the simplest and most profoundly human things that we experience.  Amanda walking the streets with a black eye, thinking only some big sign from God will get her to quit, as if losing everyone and everything wasn’t enough of a sign, was such a tragic way to end an otherwise heartwarming and inspiring episode of television.

UPDATE: Amanda Marie Thomson died on December 17, 2022 of an overdose at the age of 34.  Here is her obituary.

Date aired: September 10, 2019

Interventionist: Ken

All comments.

  1. Toreigh

    Damn it Amanda! Made me so sad to hear her say she doesnt deserve to have a good life. I hope she has her revelation soon. Was sad to see alana and bill didnt make it as a couple, but are at least supporting each others recovery. Janine looks good and I was happy to see her mom quit drinking. EJ, though he was only 31 days in was starting to look much healthier. His eyes looked almost happy, but definitely healthy. And minus his relapse, I hope his second try at sobriety sticks. And nicole… she looks so good! Her new teeth topped the cake! And even though she was bruised and puffy, you can tell after the swelling goes away, she is a super beautiful woman! The best transformation I think I have seen. I hope she can stay sober and begins to relinquish a relationship with all of her kids, and that her boyfriend Joey stays on the good path with her.

    Also… Damn Ken. Age has been SO good to you! Man looks a little more fine everytime I see him!

    1. A

      Ken is truly hotter every season! Nice bonus to the show.

    2. Stefan

      I too was bummed that Amanda didn’t stay in treatment. I was especially sad with her “Not everyone gets their spiritual awakening” comment.

      Nicole seriously looked like a completely different person. It’s so heartening to know that the superficial effects of drug use can be reversed.

      I was about to post how hot Ken looked. Those tight shirts that showed off his chest and arms made me swoon!!!

      1. Kendal Marie Quiriy

        Do you know if Amanda has gotten clean or where she is? Her story made me so so sad.

  2. Joe

    I was surpised Amanda didn’t make it. I honestly thought she was going to turn the corner and not look back. Let’s hope she’s sober today. Speaking of which I wish they’d shown updates on the Heroin Triangle alumni. All in all though it was great to see so many addicts turn it around. Sucks EJ relapsed but you have to take your bumps and bruises sobering up. He’s so young but maybe that’s what he needed to be convinced he wants to be sober. Really psyched about Bill and Alana doing so well and realizing they need to work on themselves and not their relationship. When I was in rehab there were a few rehab romances and they all ended badly. Our counselor used to say you don’t go to a junkyard to buy a used car-don’t go to rehab looking for romance. That’s a huge minefield but they seem to have avoided it!

  3. Amy

    On Intervention’s Facebook posts EJ & his sister both commented & said he’s had a couple stumbles in his recovery but is currently sober!! Bill’s mother commented & said they’re both still sober for 15+ months & aren’t together but both are still living in California!! I loved both of them & hope they continue to do well. Amanda’s step mother commented & said she’s still using & doing worse & they don’t have any contact with her. So sad but unfortunately I wasn’t sure that she was completely done & would stay sober. I hope she has her revelation soon before it’s too late. Nobody has posted about Nicole for an update & I’d love to know that she’s still sober!! Wow what a transformation she looked beautiful!!

  4. Plain old Emily

    I thought Amanda would be for sure the one that got better out of all of them. She has a little boy. And the thought of her never gaining custody would wake her up. Tells you what kind of gnarly drug it is. I hope you find the right way Amanda. We are rooting for you.

  5. A

    I am absolutely devastated because I was rooting for Amanda and even though I don’t know her, I am angry at her. She had Connor, who genuinely cared about her without enabling (he realised she is using him and set boundaries), she had a son taken away from her, she got beaten up and possibly raped, to me it seems like there is no rock bottom for her.
    Also heartbroken for her sister.

    I didn’t recognise Nicole at first. She truly came back from death. I wish her well and I hope she has a chance to live a healthy life.

    1. Kendal Marie Quiriy

      Hi I wish I could find out if Amanda is doing okay now? Does anyone know how she has been or how she’s doing now, in 2021? 🙁 I pray for her to get well..I wish she would get clean. Her story is so so sad to me. Please let me know.if she is okay??

      1. AMA

        Sadly…Amanda passed away.

  6. Emme

    Wow! Nicole is an incredible, beautiful person inside and out. She is such an inspiration and a force to be reckoned with. I am concerned she’s still with that boyfriend and they moved to West Virginia though. West Virginia is completely ravaged by an opioid crisis right now.

    And Amanda just about fractured my heart. That was so brutal and gut wrenching.

  7. Aliyssa

    Does anyone know if amanda is alive?

      1. Susie

        Oh wow! I’m subscribed to morals over money on youtube. Awesome channel. Really hope amanda can get clean. She seems like such a cool girl.

    1. Brooke

      She recently passed away


    Yes Amanda was just on a youtube channel faces of Kensington she is still in active addiction

  9. KK

    Bill and Nicole look amazing!! Amanda, is the perfect example of what they say a lot in this show “you can’t love someone out of an addiction” she has loving, supporting people around her but unfortunately she has no self love and does not seem interested in learning to have it, that update scene on her was absolutely heartbreaking how much she’s given up hope, and possibly even life.
    I really enjoyed this season and the Heroin Triangle. It’s good to see this show in a different light then the regular set up. I liked this season better than HT because they showed the more gritty sides of life in addiction instead of it been the what seems “perfect” suburbs.

  10. Brittany C

    I FINALLY finished this Season. I hope they go back for Amanda. Just one more time. Also, side note…Connor…SHEESH. What an amazing man. I hope someone loves me unconditionally like that.

    1. Elizabeth

      Omg right? Listening to Connor talk about Amanda I was like dang I wish haha

      1. Susie

        I really liked amanda and in so sad to see she looks a lot worse. Her and conor would have made such a great couple. I really hope she can get clean and turn her life around.

  11. Angela Day

    So sad…

  12. CleanInPhilly

    Amanda is unfortunately still using. She is living in a suburb of Philly where heroin is readily available. It’s also close to Trenton NJ which is a heroin hub and dope is $5 instead of $10 like it is in Philly. The town she’s in is still 100x nicer and safer than Kensington tho. She’s been arrested a bunch of times this year for drugs, burglary, theft, etc. The DAs and judges out here pretty much release everyone right away and with overcrowding + COVID going on most non-violent criminals aren’t getting jail sentences. They’ll order drug addicts to go to meetings or rehab as part of the sentencing but they don’t really check up on them to make sure they’re doing it, and 90% of the probation and parole officers are lazy af and don’t care what you’re doing. There are a lot of resources available to people like Amanda- many methadone clinics and a few rehabs that get people hooked up with medical assistance right away (which pays 100%) and with it they get food stamps, free transportation/bus passes to people going to the clinic everyday, but people have to want to get clean and I guess Amanda doesn’t.

  13. Melissity

    I’m finishing up the Heroin Hub, and couldn’t wait to find out what happened to Amanda. Through some internet sleuthing, I was able to pull up her court record in Pennsylvania (Buck County). She literally just got arrested today (7/7/21) for possession of stolen property and possession of drug paraphernalia. Lots of previous charges for stolen property and possession too. So sad!!!

    1. April S.

      Is there a link you can provide?

      1. Melissity

        Some official judicial websites are finicky about direct links to case information. Try this:

        If it doesn’t work I can post the link to the case search and walk through how I found it.

      2. Pang

        Interesting NYTimes article on the heroin hub. The descriptions of the homeless being pushed from one area to another reminded me of a zombie apocalypse in terms of the destruction done to neighborhoods by roving addicts. I copied and pasted two paragraphs from the article below.
        Trapped by the ‘Walmart of Heroin’: A Philadelphia neighborhood is the largest open-air narcotics market for heroin on the East Coast. Addicts come from all over, and many never leave.

        ….”The city offered treatment, but most of the displaced heroin addicts didn’t accept it. They moved into crumbling churches, abandoned buildings, vacant lots. They pitched tents on the grass at McPherson Square, where library staff regularly rushed outside with bottles of Narcan to save the overdosed. The police told the users to be on their way. Some of them moved to the abandoned and boarded-up Ascension of Our Lord Church, on a windswept corner of Westmoreland Street about a mile northeast of the tracks. They gathered in pews, beneath light raining through stained-glass windows. They left needles in the holy-water basin.

        In October, outside the Rev. Billy Cortes’s trailer church, a bin overflowed with trash, and the ground was covered with syringes. Homeless men pushed grocery carts, and addicts shuffled up and down the sidewalk. None of the neighbors were out playing dominoes as they usually did. “People are afraid to go outside,” Cortes said. He blamed the city for working too quickly to clear El Campamento. There were more drunk people, more needles in front of his house and on the street. Every day, for weeks, he saw someone overdose. Every corner of his block was littered with trash”….

  14. Todd

    I just finished Heroin Hub today. I was reading thru the comments and it seems that Amanda is the most discussed addict in the Hub. Well, as it happens, I also found her to be the most compelling and interesting addict. Reading thru the comments and watching the You Tube video of her it’s apparent she has gone in an awful direction. In the last month and a half I have watched a lot of “Intervention” – I’m starting to think some of these people actually want these kind of lifestyles. In other words, it’s not all about using – I think some of them genuinely want to be where they end up. I think Amanda may be one such addict. Another was Chelan from Canada. Like I said – I think they actually want to be homeless, on the streets and living that type of lifestyle. I’d love to hear if any of the other “Intervention” fans agree with my theory……

    1. Stefan

      Indeed. Another example was Kelly from back in season 1.

    2. Kat M

      Absolutely NO ONE wants that. That’s so ignorant.
      Unfortunately, some people think that’s all they deserve.

      1. Todd

        I’m sorry but I think you are wrong Kat M. I’ve watched plenty of Intervention over the last five months and there are two people in particular that I believe actually want the lifestyle they endure. One of them is Amanda. The other is Chelan from Season 21, Episode 3. Both Chelan and Amanda have myriads of options other than being homeless and on the streets. Both of them have families that care. Both of them are bright. And not to reduce it to this, but both of them are attractive enough to find a man to take care of them. Amanda already has one – I can’t remember his name right now, but he was a terrific guy that really loved her. I’m also not even getting into the social programs available to these two. Chelan went through Rehab and shortly thereafter was right back where she started – on the streets. Same with Amanda. Once again, with so many options available to these two – why in the world would they go back to living on the streets? There is only one rational conclusion – they are there because they want to be. Yeah, I just reread the comments and I see Stefan, who is a long time veteran of this program , agreed with me. So, I don’t retract what I said – these two girls are where they are because they want to be there.

    3. Chandler

      I totally agree

  15. Todd

    I took another look, a brief look I should say, at the last three Heroin Hub episodes. Something I noticed this time around – I really liked Amanda’s friend Connor. He seemed like a really balanced, really good guy. Someone that sincerely had Amanda’s best interests are heart. As far as Amanda I knew she had failed in treatment and I feel the same way about her – she may one of those people that is determined to destroy themselves. She’s still young and may prove me wrong – I hope she does. Also quickly, felt real sorry for the red headed kid’s (I forgot his name) Father. That guy would do anything for his son. Plus his heart is breaking. Hopefully the boy will get it together and make his Dad proud.

  16. Todd

    I haven’t been on this site for a good while. I was checking my old comments and I happened to uncover that Amanda has died. Awful. Poor girl. I thought she was the most interesting addict of The Heroin Hub. Does anyone know what happened to her? If I remember correctly, she was into shooting heroin and smoking crack at the same time. Then I remember she had this nice guy that really liked her, but she ended up back on the streets. Oh yeah, and she had a kid, and I think a boyfriend that was in jail. SOmething like that. ANyway, what a jolt! You started getting into this program and you end up becoming somewhat emotionally involved with the addicts. So, does anyone know what happened to her? Did she get off the streets? Thanks in advance for any info……

    1. N

      After watching heroin hub I too was really rooting for Amanda. I saw some previous post that she has died. According to her sister’s page it was a drug overdose. She died 12/17/22.