Mindy McCready Didn't Die Because of 'Celebrity Rehab' & Dr. Drew

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dr. drewSince 37-year-old country singer and Celebrity Rehab alumnus Mindy McCready took her own life last week, there's been a lot of criticism directed at Dr. Drew Pinksy, the addiction specialist known for leading McCready and many other stars struggling with substance abuse through 21 days of televised treatment. Out of the nine cast members who participated in the same season as McCready (the show's third season), three have since died; McCready was the fifth Celebrity Rehab contestant to die in the past two years.

Not a great track record for Dr. Drew or the show, I suppose -- and reason enough for those who've dismissed Celebrity Rehab as exploitative from the start to feel justified in their opinion. Still. In all fairness, can the average not-on-television rehab program for non-famous types claim a higher rate of success?

Statistically, the answer is no: A staggering amount of treatment centers report a relapse rate as high as 90 percent, regardless of philosophy or methodology or even the particular physicians in charge. So can we really blame Dr. Drew for McCready's death?

No. Because Dr. Drew is a doctor, not a miracle worker, and treatment for disease is never a guaranteed cure. Which is not to say that rehab doesn't work for some addicts -- including Celebrity Rehab. And it's worth noting that the majority of addicts who never end up getting sober never tried to get help in the first place.

Do you think it's fair to blame Celebrity Rehab or Dr. Drew for Mindy McCready's death?


Image via Splash

bad habits, celebrities, doctors, drugs, drinking, mental health


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OKgirl OKgirl

Dr. Drew and I have similar jobs, I just don't work with addicts or allow a tv crew in the sessions I have with my patients. My colleagues that do handle addictions talk about how normative relapse is and how high the death rate is following relapse or a personal crises. Dr. Drew isn't to blame at all.

nonmember avatar Tonya

He may not to be to blame, but having one's personal issues broadcast on national tv certainly cannot be a positive thing. From teen moms to drug addicts, Dr. Drew gives these people a platform that they do not need. Name ANYONE who has actually been helped by him. He's not even a psychologist, psychiatrist, or therapist, and therefore, not even qualified to be counseling these people. I'd be thrilled to see him off the air.

Maias... MaiasMommy619

How is he to blame for a choice made by a totally different person? Suicide is a personal choice. He did not sit there and tell them to do it. People always just want someone else to blame for their problems.

Sierr... SierraLynn

No he is not to blame. He didn't pull the trigger, she did. It was by her own hand and will that she took her life.

He is also not to blame for putting her on the shows she signed onto it and knew what it entailed. If she didn't want her life on tv, she shouldn't have sign the paper.

CAP1015 CAP1015

Dr. Drew not to blame.  These people went on the show because:

1. court order/legal issue 2. The wanted the free help 3.  they got paid 4. they still craved the spotlight/celeb treatment.

They don't mention that Mindy had at least three real/valid attempts at suicide prior to being on the show.  Mindy had mental issues, drug/addiction issues and a severely F'ed childhood.  Lot's of areas to blame, but not Dr. Drew.


Melan... MelanieJK

No but he blames it on the press which is absurd too!      She would have been loooong forgotten by everyone if it wasn't for her legal problems and craziness.    That was her celebrity,   not her country music which was a flash in the pan many moons ago.   

I think this does undermine his credibility because he acts like a know it all about this stuff.    He takes her word that she left rehab because she couldn't take the public attention.    Addicts are notorious for finding excuses and BS explanations for doing what they know is the wrong thing to do.   He of all people should know that!    The reality is that we just don't know how to fix people with these problems.   

nonmember avatar kaerae

No, he truly is not. But he is to blame for being a narcissistic, exploitative, condescending, mysoginistic douche. I can't stand him. He was endearing years ago on Love Line, but fame did for him exactly what it did for Dr. Phil...created a monster!

CAP1015 CAP1015

Kaerae-I agree with your assessment of his personality.  Which is why the show was a semi-success.  I think the biggest problem is how people become such fame whores and can't seem to function in real life once they've tasted the limelight.........for example Kate Gosselin, all of those people on Real Housewives, The Hills and so on..........so many can't seem to move past having been on TV for 15 seconds, and for many it will end not so happy...........and there are millions of people fighting to get their 15 seconds.......so freaking sad.

lalab... lalaboosh

Um, Tonya, Dr. Drew helped me. Loveline was far more educational and relatable than health class. I learned so much about how to protect myself sexually and emotionally thanks to him. I credit him greatly when it comes to the subject of my sexual health. I even called in once and he helped me feel more normal, which was exactly what I needed. I doubt my story is unique.

That being said, the publicity does not help, but Dr. Drew does not facilitate it. He may be a doctor and therefore have a bit more responsibility than the average celebrity, but it's clear to me that as a celebrity he goes where the spotlight goes. As do the participants on Celebrity Rehab. They all made choices to be in the public eye, they all have to suffer the consequences.

lalab... lalaboosh

Kaerae, so true. I miss Loveline Dr. Drew before Striker.

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