Jennifer Gimenez’s Sober House commentary continues! Below, the house mother talks about Steven’s return, Amber’s relapse and how Any Dick showed her that all the effort she was putting into this show was worth it.
I had no idea that there was even a chance that Steven might return to the house after what happened.
I didn’t either! However, I was told that Steven wanted to see what he had done and apologize to me. In the 12-step community, we make amends whenever we can, and there are people I need to make amends to, and I have to be OK with them saying they don’t want to hear that or see me again. I thought, if I want someone to listen to me or give me that time, I have to be willing to give it. I was willing to meet with Steven. He came in the room and was so sincere and so humbled and so apologetic. My heart went out to him, just like it did when he relapsed. At that point, I think he realized that I did what I did not because I’m a bad person, but because I really wanted to help him. I believe in second chances, and I felt like I should give him one. There were serious boundaries put up when he returned to the house. He wasn’t allowed to even say, “F*** you” to me. Talking to Dr. Drew and seeing Steven allowed me to forgive him instantly and realize that the way he was before was just the sick Steven.
At the point when you were talking to Dr. Drew and crying at the prospect of Steven returning, I had to think, “What is Jenn getting out of this?”
I’m so glad you see that. I hope other people do, too. I felt like things were crazy between Mary and her boyfriend and Seth coming in late and Steven’s return. But I stuck it out and what eventually made me stay was Andy.
Yeah, Andy changed my life. When I found out Andy was coming, I was like, “Oh hell no. I’m done.” I believed the media on who Andy was and the hype of the loaded Andy Dick. I figured he was gonna get in there, rule the house and be like, “Let’s kill this girl!” But when I open the door and see him, I see this little man that gray and shaking and so scared. He was like, “Help.” From the minute I opened the door, I saw something in him that I had not seen in anyone else. It felt like he walked in waving a white flag. He made my heart melt. Rodney was also sweet, he was just very reserved. Andy was all out, just, “This is me, and let me tell you and I’m dying and I want to get better.” He just vomited what he was feeling and who he was. It reminded me a lot of myself when I wanted to get better. I thought, “Oh my god, I’m in love with this guy. This is why I’m doing that.” And it all made sense. Andy made it complete. He was my light. To this day, we talk three or four times a day. He is my angel. I love him so much. You will hear nothing but great things from me on Andy.
Almost immediately, you have a maternal relationship with him. Where did that come from?
My whole life, I’ve been that way. I’ve been the provider of my family since I was 14. My little brother is the world to me, and I take care of my mother. I was also very close to my father before he died. I don’t know if it’s a Latin thing or a woman thing, but Andy wanted it and I love to take care of people. I have the motherly instinct in me. Andy needed a guide and he was willing.
I experienced him as a viewer sort of as you did in person. I figured, oh, he’s going to come on and be annoying at best. But I found him endearing from the start.
I don’t ever want to know Andy Dick the drunk, but I love the Andy Dick that is a wonderful spirit, a beautiful soul, a great man. I’ve never seen even a hint of what he’s been portrayed to be. And I’m sure it’s in him. The moment that Andy walked in, I owned the house. I was no longer scared or worried or trying not to say the wrong thing. I was just me. He allowed me to bring the me out, and he loved me for it.
Did you expect to forge this kind of a bond in this situation?
No, and especially not at this point, when I was pulling my hair out, thinking, “This is going to end me or I’m going to end it.” When I saw him on that doorstep, it all just made sense. I can’t even put it more elaborately: it just made sense.
On a less optimistic point, Amber gets invited to this party, and you’re against her attending from the start.
Poor, little sweet Amber, she’s a great girl. She’s a beautiful woman, she just doesn’t see it. One of her biggest triggers is men. She expresses that, that’s why I say it. All of a sudden, she gets a text message from a guy saying, “Come to my party,” and she automatically assumes it’s a date. Her illusion of this is totally incorrect. Her perception is so distorted that it breaks my heart. It’s like, this girl is going to go to any length to please this guy: even a frat party. Worst thing ever! Just to see her change when she got that text and how excited she got about this “date,” when in reality, he didn’t even pick her up.
No, and he actually avoids her once she’s there. And so she relapses. What are your thoughts on that?
I had great concern when she was leaving, because I knew the chances of her relapsing were very, very high. It’s such a setback to everything she’d been working for at this point.
Drew would argue that relapsing is all part of the process, though.
It’s not in the books. It’s not everyone’s story. You don’t have to relapse. Some people do have to relapse to finally get it, but you don’t have to relapse. If it happens, it’s a setback. Obviously, you haven’t surrendered or admitted that you’re powerless over this stuff yet. I see what Drew says, but I don’t think we should put any emphasis on it. It can be part of the process, and it’s not to put anyone down, but I also think that we don’t need to put it in people’s heads, because addicts will just go with it.
Check out what Dr. Drew had to say about this week’s episode here.