February 16, 2008

Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew - Friends and Family

The Jeff Conaway Show
For 10 minutes at the top of the episode, I thought that this was going to be yet another episode where Jeff Conaway dominates. He started complaining again about the imposed limitations and restrictions of rehab and he sucked everyone into a hugely upsetting discussion where he tried to hurt everyone with his words. But eventually he settled down and Dr. Drew convinced him to stay one more night.

Friends and Family
Friends and Family was about the family members of the residents of Dr. Drew's rehab center participating in individual and group therapy. Dr. Drew managed to get everyone to invite at least one member of their family but he was concerned that Joanie "Chyna Doll" Laurer didn't seem to have anyone to call. He wanted her to call her sister and repair their relationship about which we know nothing. But Joanie's adamant refusal to call her was very telling.

The whole idea behind counseling friends and family is to make sure everyone in rehab has a support system in place when they go home. We met everyone's families.

We were privy to a private counselling session between Seth Binzer and his wife. She seemed very stable when she expressed her wished to divorce Seth if he couldn't clean up his act. For all his tattooes and strange hair and general gruff exterior he seemed very fragile in that session. You could see he loved his wife and that her opinion means the world to him. Apparently living with him is very scary especially when he's stoned or looking to buy some drugs. He wants to clean up his act for his son - it was nice to see Seth swimming in the pool with his kid. He looked like a big kid himself. Their son's name is Halo. No comment.

We also met Mary Carrey's mother who survived jumping off a building. Turns out her mother is mentally ill. Mary explained how she made a deal with God to get well if her mother survived her injuries and they shared a warm hug. Her mother expressed great pride and joy in Mary's efforts and Dr. Drew admired Mary for being so patient and caring with her mom. Mary is now my favorite personality on the show.

Outside by the pool, Dr. Drew and a family therapist participated in a huge group meeting with all interested parties.

Brigitte Neilsen's husband and sons came to visit. She had to translate everything they said from Italian to English. Turns out the boys knew all along about their mother's drinking problem and were collectively glad that she was receiving help for her problems. Her husband was lovely and supportive and explained to the group in broken English how much he loves Brigitte and how he hopes she'll be okay in the long run.

With the support of her father, Jessica Sierra's sister told her and the group how scary life was when Jessica lived with her and her son. And with the group's support, Barry Williams told Chyna how embarrassed he was the one time she ran up on stage with him while he was performing. Barry Williams showed up out of nowhere. With no explanation he started speaking to and about Chyna. Very weird. We have no idea at all why he was there.

We also got to see that Jaimee Foxworth has a lot of family ready, willing and able to help her with her problem. But the show still hasn't focused on her too much. Except for when she's told off Jeff Conaway. As I mentioned ealier, at the top of the show, Jeff Conaway was blathering on again about how he wants to leave rehab and he started lashing out at everyone around him. She stood up to him and told him off in the nicest way possible. She's a likeable lady and I hope she gets over her long term pot addiction very soon. I'm guessing, she'll be one of the more successful rehabbers judging by how much family showed up.

At the end of the group meeting, Jeff Conaway's girlfriend Vicki showed up. He mentioned in their session that Vicki brought vodka into rehab and she responded with "You told me too." She then went on to explain that Jeff wanted her to be drunk when she visited so Dr. Drew could invite her to live at the rehab center so he wouldn't be so lonely. He must have because he responded that he was only kidding when he said that.

But Dr. Drew learned that Vicki might really have a drinking problem and may be in need of rehab herself. Apparently, she needs to drink just to get by sometimes and on occassion drinks to help her migraines. She seems to think that keeping alcohol in the house won't be a problem after Jeff comes home. Because for her, his problem is drug related and not alcohol related. Dr. Drew made it clear that all alcohol and drugs must be removed from their house. But I don't think his message got through. As long as Jeff stays with Vicki, he'll never get better. From everything I've seen, she's just absolutely the worst, most enabling person he could have in his life. She a psycho sycophant.

Family Dinner
The episode ended at a restaurant where our rehabbers prepared and served dinner for their friends and family. According to Dr. Drew, there is some therapeutic value in serving others. I'm not exactly clear what it is, although I can see how the rehabbers might find it enabling to know they can care for themselves as well as others. Maybe that's what Dr. Drew meant.

Brigitte Neilsen had a hard time because the restaurant had a full bar and she got deeply depressed but she pulled herself out of it. Jeff Conaway fell asleep cutting tomatoes. Everyone seemed to thrive in the environment and it seemed like everybody had a good time.

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