A review of the episode

This episode from the TV series “Intervention” unveils devastating stories of two individuals who tragically fall prey to the claws of drug addiction.

This documentary is based on the story of Alissa and Terry’s addiction.  Alissa suffers from a disturbed relationship with her step father, being molested in childhood and a boyfriend who helps her prostitute. Terry’s past includes being placed in multiple orphanages, sexual abuse and working for the mafia. With the help of the interventionists, both the families of Terry and Alissa persuade them to get the help they need.

Halima NoonHalima Noon is working at Willing Ways as a clinical psychologist. She has done her MS in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Beaconhouse National University, Lahore. Her published MS thesis includes current trends of materialistic values and compulsive buying among young adults. She is a Certified Reiki Practitioner from Ijaz Psychiatric Institute. Halima is also an artist by profession.

Editor: Halima Noon

Millions of people struggle with addiction, most of them need help to stop. Dr. Sadaqat Ali, the Project Director of Willing Ways and Sadaqat Clinic explains that addiction is a chronic and often relapsing disease of the brain that causes compulsive drug use and drug seeking despite the harmful consequences to the individual who is addicted and those around him.

You can watch Dr. Sadaqat Ali’s video, an eminent addiction psychiatrist, in which he speaks about addiction in Pakistan by clicking on this link:
Dr. Sadaqat Ali talks about effects of drug abuse and addiction

Alissa is 19 years old and she is addicted to shooting bath salts. She injects bath salts up to 20 times a day. Bath salts are hallucinogenic amphetamines that cause agitation and paranoia. Alissa mixes them with bleach then shoots them into her arms. She believes that she is under control.

Her arms are severely injured and the viewer is given a sight of badly bruised arms in one of the scenes. Her mother reports “It’s very scary the damage she is doing to her body.”


The side effects of bath salts include panic attacks and violent behavior according to the American Association of Poison Control Centres. Alissa has severe withdrawals. She lashes out and shows intense mood instability.

Alissa’s sister reports “I don’t see my sister, what I see is someone who is a monster.” Her family is distraught and her mother fears for her life.

Terry has been addicted to crack cocaine since two years. His son explains he uses crack cocaine for up to 36 hours straight. Terry describes the feeling as becoming more social and superior.

In the last two years, Terry has spent up to $300.000 on drugs. His family is going through a major financial crisis. His house will be auctioned in the coming months. His business has fallen apart. He has $20.000 in his bank accounts and he owes more than $4 million to his creditors.

Terry’s family is devastated and his children know if nothing changes he may die. Using crack cocaine leads to lung trauma, cardiac arrest and seizures.

Terry got married in his twenties and had two sons. Before he was 13, he was placed in more than ten orphanages and homes. When he was 10, he was sexually abused by a foster parent. Because Terry was always in foster homes nothing was ever his decision thus when he was an adult, he craved power. At the age of 32, he started working for the mafia. While working for the mafia, he started using cocaine. He explained that it brought him to a new dimension of awareness and energy level. When he was 34, the damage was so great that his wife and sons moved out. Terry explained that he lost everything his home, was bankrupt, businesses and family. At 36, Terry entered a drug and alcohol treatment centre. That year, he remarried. At the age of 41, he started a real estate development company after a successful recovery time period. At the height of his success, he was worth more than $13 million. Over the next 12 years, he donated more than $1 million to various Christian ministries. The 2008, the U.S. real estate market crashed. Terry lost close to $10 million.