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Jael Strauss Intervention on Dr.Phil

Today I want to talk about the intervention that was done on America’s Next Top Model former contestant Jael Strauss. I want to talk about how real this intervention got, even for Dr.Phil’s’ standards. There was kicking, screaming, crying and complete melt down’s taking place. Although I felt terrible for Jael the whole time I watched the episode (and I kept wishing they would have done this in a private matter) I knew that what was being done was for her own good. I was also happy to see that they were not sugar coating her addiction nor the people, places and things it had led her to. In addiction you either get help, by whatever means necessary, or die.

Addiction is a matter of life or death.

Throughout the episode Jael’s mother mentions that she had done cocaine with her daughter in order to feel closer to her. Dr.Phil in true fashion points this out when they meet and you can see that she was apologetic and remorseful in her actions. She admitted what she did and took responsibility. Her husband, Jael’s father, on the other hand did not react the same way and had a very nonchalant attitude towards how his own drug use has affected his daughter. After Dr.Phil told him in many different ways that he would have to be completely transparent about his own drug use and how it plays a part in Jael’s drug use and Intervention he still acted as if he had reasons for his use – more than Jael. He even said, “All I can say about the drugs is that I went to college in the sixties and other than that I’ve always been authentic with my daughter”. It’s as if he could not just admit that he was, is an addict and/or is in recovery or not. All that confusion and ego will not help his daughter in her journey towards recovery. How could someone drag their daughter on national television to confront her problems and addiction but be coy about their own drug use?

Now, I’m not judging. It is not my job or place to do so. It is a serious question that I ask because it is done every single day by thousands of family members of addicts.

What I’m trying to get at here is the role of the family in an addict’s addiction. It is commonly said that addiction is a family problem where at least one person is enabling the addicts’ drug/alcohol addiction. Family members can enable an addict by being addicts themselves and introducing them to drugs or actively doing drugs with their loved one. Enablers also provide shelter, food, money and transportation. Enablers allow an addict to continue in active addiction and not hit rock bottom and make decisions and choices for themselves to get help.

Jael did accept to go to rehab and get the help she needs but I wonder if Dr.Phil offered his services to her family members as well. Addiction is a family disease and her father, mother, sister, Godfather and everyone directly affected should seek some sort of treatment, even if it’s just to go see a therapist.

If you or someone you know needs treatment for their addiction to meth, call us at 800-951-6135 or visit us online at

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