A Central New York woman has revealed her struggle with drug and alcohol addiction on the latest episode of TV's "Intervention."
Katherine C., a 28-year-old prostitute who goes by "Katie," appeared on Monday's season premiere of the A&E reality show with her family and best friend, who sought to get her treatment while on camera. Katie, who is never identified by last name, openly does cocaine and heroin while living at home with her parents in Syracuse.
"Right now I'm massively addicted to drugs. Smoking crack, drinking alcohol, sniffing dope, shooting coke," Katie said. "Coke is my first love, which is awful. I'm talking about coke like it's a person, see how [expletive] I am?"
"Crack is heaven," she added. "Crack is my best friend, my lover, my confidant, more important to me than the basic necessities of life like food, shelter, clothing."
Katie is shown drinking, smoking and injecting needles in her arm -- all inside the house.
"It's become so casual for her," her mother Kathy said. "It's a miracle she's alive."
Katie's habits cost $400 a day, and admits she pays for drugs and alcohol by prostituting herself. "Intervention" cameras show her on the phone, negotiating sex acts with clients for money.
"I prostitute to support my addiction. I work very hard," Katie said. "Sometimes to get through it, I literally have to find one thing about them that I don't hate and say it over and over to myself in my head to keep from stabbing them in the eye with a knife."
Her family says the troubles began when Katie was 16; she developed an eating disorder while attending an unidentified parochial school. Things got worse when she went to a Catholic college in New York City, where she started experimenting at parties.
Katie was raped during her sophomore year of college, but didn't tell anyone about the sexual assault or report it to police. She began self-medicating with drugs and alcohol, and weighed just 85 pounds when she came home that summer.
"I'm like, a very broken person right now. Half a person. I'm a ghost of what I used to be," Katie said.
She was expelled from school her junior year after drugs were found in her dorm room.
Katie's parents, Dave and Kathy, are described as overprotective Catholics who wouldn't let their only child watch most movies growing up. Dave is legally blind and is on the autism spectrum with Asperger's, but sees his daughter's struggles are more worrisome.
"I'm 73 and I'm afraid there's a chance that I will outlive my child," Dave said.
Katie has overdosed at least seven times, caught Hepatitis C, suffered seizures and continues to use drugs despite multiple trips in and out of rehab centers.
Her mother admits continuing to let Katie do drugs, sometimes even driving her to her dealer or dipping into her retirement fund to help pay for the addiction. Ken Seeley, an interventionist for the A&E series, says the parents must stop.
"Most addicts, they don't die from the disease of addiction. They die from the disease of enabling," Seeley said.
Seeley leads the family and Katie's friend Sara in a tearful intervention, in which Katie agrees to get treatment. She flies from Syracuse to Texas for rehabilitation at the Sante Center for Healing.
"I'm a drug addict. I'm not a bad person," Katie said. "I love my family and they love me enough to, like, get me on this show so I owe it to them to at least try and I'm going to try like hell. I don't want them to have to bury their daughter."
The cameras stop following Katie, but the episode reveals she returned home after 31 days and quickly relapsed. A month later, she was back at the Sante Center, where she was arrested after fighting staff and pulling five fire alarms.
Seeley told Dave and Kathy that the only option left is a "blackout." They must cut off contact with Katie until she's sober.
"This is your disease. If you do not disconnect, you will not be able to save her," Seeley warned.
The episode ends on a dark note, revealing Katie's parents ignored Seeley's advice and paid for an unsuccessful trip to a treatment center in Florida. Five days later, she came home and relapsed.
Karissa Hilts, a Central Square native, appeared on 'Intervention' in 2016, sharing her story of heroin addiction and staying sober. She was killed in a hit-and-run crash in Florida earlier this year.