Retired Players Enter Rehab for Addiction–Football Injuries–GQ Casualties of the Gridiron–EP7

Jean Merlino played football at West Point sustained a total of thirteen concussions I had this sponge head or like a fog cap it just wears wrong and it just doesn’t go away I wake up every morning I go please don’t I found him in the garage and I thought he was gonna hang himself [Music] it does feel like my husband was taken away from me but the more I’m finding out about concussions and brain damage in the NFL it makes sense [Music] [Music] they’re [ __ ] I could have walked right here I like they’re chasing me around – never a bad thing having a blonde chasing your hand don’t marry one I’m married – yeah you said that so I’ve got a new problem my older brother right here had a block guys like this and you wonder what my head’s a little jacked up gene and Terry two guys with both severe post concussion and addiction issues have become the two Desperados here in fact that I got you Tara somebody can understand me just the other day they diverted the driver who was taking them to a neurological exam so they could stop at a farm you went to a bar before a neurological exam that’s just brilliant I’m a bad influence well it’s great that gene has been able to bring Terry out of his shell the truth is we still need to build enough trust in Terry that he’ll open up about his meth use and there is no one better than ray Lucas when it comes to doing this i’v gentleman with the honesty part that’s what I’ll bring everybody yeah if you can begin to understand that a lot of that could be attributed to us oh yeah if he could wrap his mind around that I absolutely think that he it will even help them get better faster you guys have all sustained documented head injuries okay you know one of the if it’s frontal lobe damage one of the big centers and that gets damages impulse control that’s what we’re talking about here you know looking to medicate the brain whether it be with you know Coke or pills or whatever impulse control there’s no filter there you know with our head trauma we do things that we don’t even understand so how do you expect your wives your girlfriends your siblings your daughters I expect them to understand for me personally I was taking anywhere from 50 to 60 bikes percocets oxy Roxy a day and when I first got the jet I remember telling that I was taking maybe 10 a day which is really not it’s pretty stupid but I was ashamed because you know I didn’t want to tell her how bad I really was this is a place where we tell each other how bad we really are that’s why the process works it’s us we support each other and that’s how we get through it’s the first step in getting your life back but it has to be honest okay if you’re not honest it’s not gonna work how you doing good immediately after the peer counseling session with Ray dr. Furr Cascio and I made the play to get Terry to come clean and allow us to get a feel like we’re starting to get to a point where we can actually help Terry but the question now is can we do the same for Jeanne who’s got his own extreme dependency issues one point seven five liters I’m doing wearing them a day just to get myself going how much can you drink I don’t even enjoy yeah but if I stop I just I tighten up when I curl up on a couch I can’t move by who drinks the level of gene drinks you can’t safely just say hey stop drinking you have to titrate a guy like that down because coming off of a liter day of alcohol is a very dangerous and risky proposition how about we’re lining up a rehab facility where we can send gene and Terry together but in cases is complicated when you’re dealing with brain injuries and this level of addiction takes time to assemble the right team and with gene who seems particularly out of control we’re coming back down to the bar we really need to put a safety net around this guy yeah nice in the car yes here John you all right so this weekend I invited Jean down to my house in Texas where I live with my boyfriend oh my gosh it’s just so crazy working with come on we’ve been waiting for for you for like three hours he’s got no short-term memory so forgets he has no recollection of like what he’s doing ain’t no concept of time ya know today is Friday it’s the same day it is that when you lay down to take the nap an hour ago this is what guys with head injuries eat sugar which is very bad for head injuries sugar terrible for head injuries just make sure be easy with that this time with Gina’s only reinforced the importance of getting Gina into a rehab as soon as possible so we can detox them and try to begin dealing with his head injuries if this is like real head trauma stuff here your short-term memory is very compromised so I have to assume you are the way at home as you are here I would have to guess but we’re meaning I mm-hmm take you right to the airport and take you right there now I would I would take the experiences that you’ve dealt with you think it’s that severe I don’t think I’ve seen a case this severe why not then that’s but saying something okay so Tuesday or Thursday whichever day the doctors can do it wherever you can do it I don’t care what do you make whatever time you make it will make it work it’s that important that’s what’s the wall done hey ray I’m in the car with Jeanne and terian we’re on our way to the facility so your chief complaint or reason for admission I guess self medication of symptoms that you know that I think are related to the head injuries that I had from years ago playing football have you experienced any fatigue disturbed sleep from not using I am so glad you came I’m just I think you’ll do good I think it’ll be a good break for you too and I’m really counting on you to help me out with Jeanne it could be that’s what you’re here for I think that that may be why you were here too I mean you guys will help each other but you’re good team we’re off and running I don’t want to be that guy that’s got the CT that is now taking over me I want to take over here look wonderful today Terry’s former coach Dick Vermeil came in the past to see Terry I was frustrated because I cleaned out and I felt worse I had was a humming it’s gonna stay home and he came first and let I’ll tell you this it’s not always attics in here we have we cut we cut it up yeah we cut it off yeah for me to see those five guys in that room come back to the fraternal order that we come from that Brotherhood that we come from was huge for me [Music]