Young, Reckless and Enabled

June 19, 2013
Donna and Roger say their 25-year-old daughter, Jordan, is addicted to drugs, reckless and out of control, but she wasn’t always that way. How did she go from a polite child to an addict with multiple arrests in just a few short years?







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Who's to Blame?

Donna says her ex-husband, Roger, is to blame for their daughter's inability to get clean.

Donna’s sister, Marianne, has some strong words about Roger. “Soon, he will be her murderer.”

Dr. Phil makes it clear to Jordan's family that their primary goal should be getting Jordan help, not throwing Roger under the bus. They all agree. Dr. Phil says Jordan makes the choice to do drugs — and she’s very sick.


Is Roger sabotaging his daughter, despite his good intentions?

Dr. Phil lists several examples of how Roger may be enabling Jordan: When she stole personal property from another family, he paid off the family. After her second stay in rehab, he let her live with him instead of at a halfway house. When she began using drugs again, he continued to give her money and pay her bills. When she was arrested for using cocaine, he continued to let her live with him. After her third stay in a treatment center, he bought her a penthouse apartment, where she started using drugs again. 

“You are well-intentioned and horribly misguided.”

Dr. Phil speculates that Jordan may have been using drugs for several years before the family caught on, so her emotional development may have been arrested at the time she started — possibly as young as 13. “She has brain damage. Some of it is recoverable, some of it is not. Her self-esteem is on the floor. Her self-worth is on the floor. Her maturity is arrested at a very elemental level, and she’s walking around with an inefficient brain ... We’re dealing with a child here,” Dr. Phil explains. He tells Roger, “You are loving and financing her to death. It is not what she needs from her father. She needs leadership, and she needs to be held to a standard from which she cannot shy.”


"I Most Definitely Want to Be Clean"

Jordan opens up about her addiction. What does she say is her biggest hurdle to overcome?

Jordan joins her family onstage. She reveals that her parents have taken her to buy drugs when she was going through painful withdrawal symptoms. Donna admits she was complicit on two occasions: to get Jordan on the plane to Los Angeles for the show and when they arrived in L.A. When pressed, Jordan confides that her father has taken her to get drugs as well. Dr. Phil reminds the young woman that her parents are not responsible for her drug problem — she makes that choice herself.

Dr. Phil paints a picture of what could happen if Jordan’s family stopped enabling her.

Dr. Phil tells Roger, “Somebody has to get you to pull your head out and recognize what you’re doing here is selfish. What you’re doing here is to make you feel better, not to get her well. She deserves to get well ... From this point forward, when you hand her money, you might as well take a syringe and put it in her arm.”

After excusing Jordan, Dr. Phil explains to her family that Jordan doesn't need a sixth stay in rehab; she needs a multi-layered intervention strategy with a team of doctors. He offers to send Jordan to the Lawlis Peavey PNP Center in Dallas. Dr. Phil urges Roger to be the hero and lead his daughter out of her troubles.

“Nothing would be more special to me,” Roger says.