Oct
04.
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Jennifer Gimenez Talks Rehab With Dr. Drew Episode 4: Part Of The Grieving Process

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Jennifer Gimenez Rehab With Dr. Drew
Each week after Rehab With Dr. Drew, we’ll be talking to some of the staff on hand at the Pasadena Recovery Center to find out everything that went down in front of and behind the camera with this season’s group of patients. This week we spoke to our friend Jennifer Gimenez, the resident technician at the facility who had battled demons on her own, and she offered up her insight and some behind-the-scenes details for this episode. Tonight we discuss Erika’s false positive drug test, Ashleigh’s agitation toward the rest of the group, and Jasmen’s need for family support.

At the end of the last episode, it appeared we were dealing with appositive drug test, but tonight we saw that it was like all a ruse and it wasn’t positive after all, it was just the effects of having benzos in her system.

I know! Here’s the thing though, benzos normally stay in your system for a while, but it was her behavior that was concerning me and I believed the rest of the patients were very concerned for her and the fact that she also had her boyfriend there, who was not really in a lot of acceptance of his own part of the whole situation and how tumultuous that relationship is. It was concerning us; I mean she was definitely not Erika for a good four hours or so, it was a little bit longer than four hours, and I was watching her behavior, and everyone kept coming up and coming up and I’m not going to just jump the gun, we don’t normally do that in treatment, like go “Oh ok! Someone thinks she’s high!” But you’re going to observe and her behavior just got more and more out of control and I do say in there that I was concerned ’cause her eyes at one point were like rolling back and her pupils were so dilated that it was a concern, but thankfully we did the procedures that we needed to do and we tested her and we talked to Dr. Drew, we checked the medications, and we went through what standard procedure is in treatment, but it was good that that it ended up being a result of her not using.

Was she annoyed by everybody doubting her?

I think she started getting more paranoid, I don’t think she was so annoyed, as much as she was just really scared at one point, but she wasn’t annoyed with the group. I think she was more scared and felt bad and she realized that it was going out of control and it was spinning out of control for her.

So everybody in this episode is just on edge. So I’m wondering if you can talk about that a little bit just as far as in your own experience how bad that can get and if it can cause a lot of friction among people in these group settings?

Well this is definitely the agitation show on this episode, because they’re all feeling feelings that they’re not used to. The getting off of drugs and alcohol now, it’s day four, day five, and feelings start coming in that they’re not used to coping with and there is a lot of issues and there’s a lot of issues that they have not ever in their life dealt with. They lost coping skills and all of sudden they’re in a small environment with people they don’t know, and feelings are kicking in, and you’re gonna see them unravel, and get very angry. It’s part of the grieving process; they’re grieving the loss of drugs and alcohol, and then starting to see their reality just a tiny bit. They’re learning to cope and we’re trying to give them some tools and we allow them to process and to kind of work things out on their own. Eric starts really kind of unfolding – his reality is kicking in and he does not have any coping skills whatsoever and he just wants to run.

Ashleigh definitely seemed agitated and had a lot of feelings against the group this week.

No one’s ever gonna go through the same things at the same time, so you’re gonna see their emotions act out in different situations, such as, Ashleigh likes to have her way, certain things in a certain way and, look, they don’t know how to live. It was sloppy, and it was disgusting and we would have them clean, and there was always people cleaning as well, and you just can’t follow them around like a parent, and there has to come a point where you say something and that was what I was saying with Ashleigh. At one part in the show you see me saying to her “You don’t have to attack them,” ’cause her first thing she’s holding, holding, holding everything in and then she shuts down then she’s like. It’s going to come out and I’m trying teach her how to communicate, this is all about communicating and learning to find your voice and to find a balance voice. So she got to come and process it with me and then she did it in the group, and then she act out on Eric. I think she was holding it in and finally she just let it out and it could be somebody looking at you the wrong way or it could be the ashtrays, or it could real — if you take that situation away, she’s still going to have these responses. I’m glad that she was able to have them in treatment.

The other thing that struck me this week was Jasmen’s mother, who was not supportive of her decision to want to stay in a sober living facility and take a continued recess from her regular life. I’m just wondering if it’s disheartening to hear that kind of conversation, it just felt like in that moment her mom was going against what was best for her.

Yeah I mean, look there’s a lot of parents and there’s a lot family members and loved ones that will not go on this journey of recovery with you and it is sad. There’s some people that will be supportive and they really do ultimately and I really do believe that Jasmen’s mom, she definitely wants her daughter better. Jasmen and I had started getting very close and to see what the beautiful thing was, that she all of sudden really did want to get sober, not just like clean up, but she really wanted recovery. She started believing that there was a better way of living and the fact that she was actually voicing this was so important. I say that a lot to people when I work in treatment or if people in recovery, it’s like you know your parents or family members may not want to do this with you and this is where it becomes a selfish program and it’s about you. Do you want to live and do you want to be there for — with Jasmen’s case, for her daughter, for her life, does she want to show up for it, and she’s going to have to take matters into her own hand. She’s an adult and hopefully she starts seeing that, which I do believe she is seeing it, she wants a better life for herself. The seed has been planted and it’s starting to grow, which is a beautiful thing.

I feel like I always gloss over Michael in that way you guys have said that people gloss over a kid like him in treatment because he’s sort of under the radar and seems like he’s doing pretty well. But this week he got a little bit of attention, just because it was hard to pinpoint his reason or the catalyst for he started doing drugs and what his deeper issues were. I’m wondering if it’s common for somebody like him – he says he deals with low self-esteem and he has guilt; if that’s just as prevalent as somebody who’s had major trauma, to start their addiction?

Absolutely. Again Michael is and does fit that beautiful quote of “the All-American Guy, the All-American Boy,” but again let’s not mistake that he is a level 10 addict and has the gene of this disease and he has exposed himself to it, so even though he’s kind and he’s sweet, he’s really endearing, he’s so intelligent, and he has a really good heart, there is also something deep rooted in him. I think that there is more and more will be revealed as you see that, I believe. Sometimes it takes them a little while to unfold and to start really starting to see the things. The bottom line is he’s an addict and he has the gene and he exposed himself to the disease. Even though he says the right things and is sweet and well-mannered and grew up correctly, with a family that loves him, that still doesn’t take away the fact that he suffers from this disease and I think it’s extremely important because there’s a lot of Michaels out there. There’s a lot, a lot, a lot of Michaels that can just get by and hide that. “I hid it for a long time until I couldn’t hide it. I was loved; I was loved as a child and grew up that way.” I understand where Michael is coming from and just speaking with him, we don’t want to necessarily just throw at him what his issues are, we want him to be able to see as well. The guilt, shame, and remorse, there’s more to it. What else is there? The self-esteem, low self-worth and all that it definitely adds to his disease.  Also, I mean at the end of the day he’s an addict. He does the same thing that everyone else with addiction does.


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Sep
15.
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“Escapism From Reality?” “Rehab with Dr. Drew” PREMIERES this Sunday Sept. 16th @8pm on VH1

“Escapism From Reality?” By Aung Munster (Via Garage-Girls.com)               

Reality TV.  It can be showcased well, or it can be deplorable. Either way, I thought the premise of television was for people to flock to it for escapism purposes-from reality. Yet ironically, it seems that reality shows are the most popular of TV show genres. There are reality shows about pawn shops, car impounds, storage units. There is even a show about people who hoard. What is it with our culture? We derive pleasure by watching others live in complete and utter filth. Living amidst dozens of empty pizza boxes; moldy food strewn about-and in one case…rotting cat corpses in the living room. Is this entertainment?

Shining the spotlight on the human breakdown, the disease riddled structure of civilization is far from entertainment. Or. Is it? Ratings suggest otherwise.

Which brings me to the mecca of all reality shows (as far as human depravity goes.) “Rehab with Dr.Drew.” No celebs this time around. Judging from the previews, the patients seem quite diverse. As do their addictions. Hopefully their motives are to seek help, and regain control of their lives. The irony is, they walk in relatively “unknowns” i.e.”non celebs.” As soon as this show airs-instant notoriety and dare I say, fame.  Like so many others before them, and inevitably many thereafter-it will be shortlived.

Along with that spotlight comes a camera crew, lighting and sound people etc. One has to wonder if in the end, it will be more destructive than beneficial to those directly involved. In a sense they are test subjects. Who will cave first? Which one will be the one to throw in the proverbial towel?

What we will witness may sicken us. We’ll cry with them. We’ll cheer for them. We’ll probably scream at our TV’s and at anyone in our immediate vicinity who dares to speak during an episode. We’ll want to turn away, but-we won’t dare avert our eyes.


There will be some familiar faces. Resident techs Jennifer Gimenez, Shelly Sprague and Bob Forrest will be along for the journey once again.  They’ve all been where these patients are; &they have all successfully ascended from their respective addictions.


In my opinion, (basing the following on last season) Jennifer had grounded the show. Not only has she battled and continually defeats (on a daily basis) her own demons, she is (as well as Bob& Shelly) a living representation to the patients and viewers, that sobriety is a viable option. It does work. Jennifer also brings compassion and fortitude to the show. She exudes strength, yet there is an underlying vulnerability-in the sense that she knows (despite the fact that she’s strong in her recovery) that she could be right back in the same situation as the people she is assisting. It’s quite the symbiotic relationship.


Fortunately Jennifer doesn’t have to be the sole authoritative figure. There is also Shelly, with her tough as nails demeanor, who often white knuckles restraint, while somehow simultaneously evoking calmness. She seems to be the voice of reason when patients exhibit unruly behavior.

Then there is Bob Forrest. He is, well-simply a badass. Highly respected; &he doesn’t command respect. It’s automatically given; & willfully.

As for Dr. Drew, he’s a force to be reckoned with; & a man with an incredible array of neckties.


So let me revert back to my original question. Are we voyeurs, fascinated because its entertainment-or because it may in fact mirror our own lives? Are we secretly longing for the answers to be revealed in between commercial breaks? I’m sorry to break this to you my friend. You probably won’t find the answers you are seeking. Why you ask? More times than not, the answers that you will find will more than likely only lead to more questions; &there are only so many episodes.


This new “cast” of patients will not only tug on our heartstrings, but I have a feeling that by the end of the season our hearts will be completely extracted.


“Rehab with Dr. Drew” PREMIERES this Sunday Sept. 16th @8pm on VH1


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Sep
14.
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Jennifer Gimenez opens up about ‘Rehab’ and ‘Housewives’

By: Lindsay Cronin (Examiner.com)

Jennifer Gimenez attends the OK! Magazine Toasts Hollywood's Sexiest Singles event at the Lexington Social House on April 14, 2011 in Hollywood.Jennifer Gimenez attends the T-Mobile Sidekick 4G launch event on April 20, 2011 in Beverly Hills, California.Jennifer Gimenez arrives at Fashion's Night Out at Westfield Topanga on September 8, 2011 in Topanga, California.Jennifer Gimenez attends Ok! Magazine's Pre-GRAMMY Event at Tru Hollywood on February 10, 2012 in Hollywood, California.
Jennifer Gimenez may be known to some as a reality star but she’s certainly not letting that brand her. Not only does Jenn have roles on shows such as Rehab with Dr. Drew and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, she has also been working on a memoir, appearing on CNN and Headline News, and she’s getting back into acting!

On Sunday, Jenn will be seen in this Sunday’s premiere of VH1‘s new series Rehab with Dr. Drew. Jenn is a rehabilitation technician and will be leading her knowledge and skills to aid Dr. Drew in helping addicts beat the fatal disease. The show is much like Celebrity Rehab but this time around, they will be helping non-celebrities which makes it pretty wild considering this cast has nothing to lose and no image to uphold.

View slideshow: Jennifer Gimenez

Jenn is certainly one of a kind — has there been any one else out there that can juggle two such dramatically different reality shows? Sure, there have been reality stars who have gotten spin-offs, but that’s one in the same.

In Jenn’s case, she is on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills which certainly can get a bit out of hand, but not necessary in a dangerous, life-changing way. For example, during a party that her best friend Brandi Glanville was throwing, cast mate Taylor Armstrong had a complete emotional break-down which lead most of her cast mates getting involved in a yelling match — it wasn’t pretty.

Of her gig on Housewives, Jenn explains, “It was let loose time for me. I get to say things that are kind of funny or whatever, and you’re allowed to do that there.” While she stays true to herself on Rehab as well, it’s more of a working environment.

“On Housewives, even though there was drama, it was a lot less dramatic. I’m talking about saving lives on Rehab, I’m talking about helping people and showing them that they should give themselves a chance to live and that they are worthy of it.”

To see Jennifer Gimenez at work and saving lives on Rehab with Dr. Drew, tune in to VH1 every Sunday night at 8/7c. As for her return to Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, that will be seen later this year.


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Aug
10.
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Jennifer Gimenez reacts to Kathie Lee Gifford’s addiction comments

By: Lindsay Cronin

Jennifer Gimenez arrives at Fashion's Night Out at Westfield Topanga on September 8, 2011 in Topanga, California.

Kathie Lee Gifford has recently came under fire after insinuating that the parents whose children are drug addicts are failures. Kathie recently talked to Family Circle Magazine and told them, “I’m not a perfect mom, but my kids haven’t been arrested, in rehab or kicked out of school, so I must be doing something right!”

Fans attacked her from all angles, TMZ reports, calling her “a thoughtless human being.” One reader even revealed their heartbreaking story. “I lost my baby at the age of 32 to a heroin overdose in Sept 2010. I am a doctor and worked hard my entire life to give her the best.”

Jennifer Gimenez, addiction specialist and star of Sober House, Celebrity Rehab, Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, and the upcoming Rehab, is speaking out. “I’m appalled by your comments regarding parents of drug addicts. Addiction is a disease,” Jenn tweeted.

Jenn would know. She has dealt with addiction, and surely wouldn’t credit it to her parents. In fact, her mother, along with her friend Brandi Glanville, was the one who forced her to get treatment. “Addiction is a disease not the parents fault! With all the awareness being brought re addition why not educate yourself,” she challenges.

In a poll conducted by TMZ, 70% of readers thought Kathie’s comments were way off base.

For more of Jennifer Gimenez tune in to Dr. Drew’s Rehab and Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, both premiering this fall.


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Aug
05.
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Jennifer Gimenez dishes on all things reality 

By: Lindsay Cronin

Jennifer Gimenez at the launch of Brandi Glanville’s new clothing line
Jennifer Gimenez at the launch of Brandi Glanville's new clothing line
Jennifer Gimenez is what one might call a reality television pro. She’s been in everything from Real Housewives of Beverly Hills to Sober House, and she’s not slowing down. In the next few months, fans will be able to see her in Rehab, a new show by Dr. Drew, and RHOBH, which both premiere this fall and will likely be airing simultaneously.

During last night’s debut of her friend Brandi Glanville‘s clothing line, Jenn dished on how being on reality shows affects her personal relationships, dating, and she expressed interest in adding yet another reality show to her extensive resume.

“It really makes you realize who your real friends are and who’s going to be there for the long run,” Jenn reveals. She also spoke about finding privacy within her circle of  friends. Luckily, she’s been blessed with what she refers to as her ‘towers.’

When it comes to dating, Jenn says, “It’s really hard to date, trust me, it’s really hard to date or be married.” Although Jenn is currently single, she looks forward to marriage and kids at some point. Perhaps she should apply for ABC’s The Bachelor or The Bachelorette! Well, maybe not. That may lead to a reality show overload. However, Jennifer may be eyeing up another ABC reality show — Dancing With The Stars!

When the interviewer took a brief pause, Jenn joked that he was just waiting for her to put her foot in her mouth, which she claims to do often, but as she says, “I’m kind of okay with it.” A good attitude to have — especially in reality TV.

For more of Jennifer Gimenez, follow her on Twitter.


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Aug
05.
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Brandi Glanville’s BFF Jennifer Gimenez dishes on her new clothing line

By: Lindsay Cronin

Brandi Glanville and Jennifer Gimenez pose for the NOH8 Campaign
Brandi Glanville and Jennifer Gimenez pose for the NOH8 Campaign
Last night, Brandi Glanville launched her new clothing line, and right by her side was her longtime best friend, Jennifer Gimenez. Brandi and Jenn have been friends for several years — to say the least. The two met while modeling over twenty years ago!

The two have been through a lot together including Brandi’s husband’s affair and Jenn’s battle with addiction. Luckily, they have supported each other without fail and are now both in a better place and their careers are thriving. In fact, they often appear together on Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, so it was only appropriate that these two shared this special moment together.

When I asked Jenn about Brandi’s new clothing line, she expressed her happiness for her friend. “I’m extremely proud of my BFF Brandi and her new line. To me, it represents a woman feeling comfortable and sexy no matter what size you are and no matter what age you are. It’s all about empowering a woman,” she revealed.

Jenn also gushed about Brandi saying, “She’s an extraordinary woman, mother, and friend.”

These two have truly been there for each other through all the highs and all of the lows. Hopefully, fans will get to see more of this beautiful friendship on season 3 of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills which premieres later this year on Bravo.


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