Jennifer Gimenez’s Sober House commentary continues! Below, the house mother talks about staying up late and worrying about the people she lives with (just like a real mother!), Mary’s toxic relationship, Seth’s downturn and why she doesn’t agree with Dr. Drew about sobriety being boring.
How worried were you about Amber when she didn’t come home?
I was concerned for her safety. I stayed up till 5 in the morning waiting, and I knew she was never gonna come, but you just never know. I figured that if something happened, she would call me. I was scared for her, but I was angry, too. We tried to help her and she just didn’t want it. There’s nothing you can do at that point but pray.
When you stay up late for someone, is that because it’s your job to do so or is it just something you’re inclined to do?
My job was to enforce the rules. Staying up late isn’t something I was asked to do, but the concern and love I had for these people is what made me do that. I do have a mothering nature. We’ve talked about that before. I think it’s important to nurture people, especially when they’re so sick and trying to get better.
Mary’s relationship with David is getting increasingly “toxic.” At what point would intervening on your part be appropriate? Were you just biting your tongue at this point?
We’re adults. One of the greatest gifts we get in life, and I didn’t realize this until I was in recovery, is the freedom of choice. I didn’t know what choice was. Mary keeps doing the same thing expecting different results. I don’t understand tolerating that kind of abuse. If David really cared about this person from a dating or managing perspective, he wouldn’t wave a bottle in front of her face and tell her, “Let’s keep going, and by the way, you’re a piece of s***.” Who does that? I find that when people are like that, they feel bad about themselves and they want everyone to know that so they take it out on the ones who are more vulnerable. I definitely gave Mary my opinion that she deserves better in life. It’s sad. It’s torturous to watch.
There’s also more clubbing in this episode. I felt like the housemates were, for lack of a better phrase, drunk of their own power. They’d gone out before without relapsing, so they were tempting fate again.
They had a lot of bad influences around them, and they just kept doing it. I saw it coming, though. You can almost play the tape before it even happens when you watch them. We’re giving them this gift, these suggestions, these options and they’re taking their free will and running wild with it. I saw in their faces and behavior that the demons were coming. Mary’s battling with being emotionally abused by this guy, yet wanting his approval. It’s not like just because you’re sober for a few days or weeks or months that you’re comfortable in your own skin. You have to completely condition yourself everyday. If you’re going to go out, get a little balance and foundation. Seth had none of that. Somebody talking about him led him down a spiral.
Early in the episode, did Seth’s cockiness, his insistence that he wouldn’t get thrown out of the house regardless of his behavior, worry you?
Yeah. It’s like, “Why are you pushing the limits? Your way hasn’t worked for you.” It gets very frustrating. You get emotionally attached to these people and you just want to shake them and go, “Stop! Sit still enough to feel!”
On the other side, that’s exactly what Andy does: he puts himself on permanent lockdown. Was that a relief?
Yes. Andy knows that the things the other residents are doing, running their own show. It hasn’t worked for him. It hasn’t worked for them, either, they just think they’re going to change and do it differently. Like, this time they have a handle on it. Andy’s so defeated that he’s like, “I don’t know how to do this, so I’m doing it your way.” That doesn’t mean the boring way, it means the stable way.
So do you disagree with Dr. Drew’s earlier discussion with the group on sobriety’s boring potential?
Sobriety’s not boring. You don’t lose your gifts. I used to worry, “Oh, now that I’m sober, I’m not going to be talented.” Or, “I’m going to lose the ability to be cool or fun.” At first, you just have to dumb down and slow the pace, from your thoughts to your actions. And then you realize who you are and that you’re more enlightened because of it. I have more fun now. There’s no boring in it unless you make it boring. It’s about balance and knowing that you don’t always have to be performing. I feel like that was a lot of people’s problem. I feel like whether it was for the cameras or their image or all the outside stuff, these people needed to perform.
When it turns out that Seth’s missing, Mary and Andy both assume that he’s off having sex. Any idea why they jumped to that conclusion?
There was no real basis. I think they were projecting what they would do. We’re all reflections of each other. There was no real depth to that speculation.
The episode ends with a cliffhanger. Seth is broadcasting himself via computer from an undisclosed location.
That was sad. He said, “Jenn, I love you. I’m sorry I’m going to be late.” I was just heartbroken. I knew that David Weintraub had been talking about a lot of the people in the house, saying that they were all losers and meanwhile, he’s hanging out with all of us. That really broke Seth’s heart. I think this may have awakened him to the quality of the people that were in his life, though. Regardless, you could see this coming from the first episode. Seth was not the same refreshed Seth that you saw on the first season of Celebrity Rehab. You could see the brokenness in him already. This disease has a huge grip on Seth. It’s so cunning how it works. It breaks my heart, but all you can do is love from a distance till they’re ready.
Check out what Dr. Drew had to say about this week’s episode here.