For the last few months,Teen Mom 2 star Jenelle Evans has been in a downward spiral of drug use, mysterious hospital visits, marriage, divorce, pregnancy and miscarriages. During all of this havoc, Roundup readers have asked The Ashley for her comments. However, The Ashley has chosen to stay mostly mum on the subject for a number of reasons.
First, it is impossible to write about everything that Jenelle does. The Ashley feels that those that have attempted to follow Jenelle’s craziness are just exhausted by it all and are tired of hearing about who Jenelle is marrying/divorcing/publically humiliating on Twitter, etc.
Second, the last thing The Ashley wants to give Jenelle is more publicity. She feeds off of it.
However, the time has come for The Ashley to venture down this rabbit hole a bit and discuss the repercussions that Jenelle’s actions has had on herself, the network she represents and the other girls associated with this show.
The Ashley was interviewed about this topic for a story in today’s New York Post. That article, which reveals that insiders are saying that ‘Teen Mom 2’ will not continue with a fifth season, can be read here.
Although the ‘Teen Mom’ shows have long been touted as a “ground-breaking docu-series,” and cautionary tales about the perils of teenage motherhood, this is hardly the case these days. In fact, motherhood has become an after-thought on the show. Instead of focusing on how hard it is to be a teenage mother, Jenelle’s segments are centered around whatever bottom feeder she happens to be getting freaky with at the moment, court hearings and fighting with her mother. (While the other girls’ segments do actually focus on their motherhood experiences, there is still room for improvement here in terms of how much footage MTV uses that includes the kids rather than the boyfriends, etc.)
MTV has caught a lot of flack from critics and the general media for “glamorizing” teen pregnancy by taking these girls and turning them into full-blown celebrities. (Many of the moms have argued that they are not celebrities or famous, but this, of course, is simply not the case. Like it or not, these girls are on the covers of magazines, gathering astronomical amounts of followers on social networking sites, etc. They are famous.)
Jenelle’s antics onscreen pale in comparison to what is happening on her Twitter and Facebook accounts, essentially turning the show into a mockery of itself. It’s quite ridiculous to watch footage that was filmed nearly a year ago in which Jenelle is claiming that she is “getting her life together,” all while her current life is playing out online like a white trash telenova.
MTV has long had to scramble in order to cover up Jenelle’s antics and save the franchise from further embarrassment. For example, in March 2011, Jenelle brutally attacked a former friend. (She was later arrested for her actions.) The footage of the fight quickly went viral (thanks, TMZ!) and media outlets from as far away as New Zealand were picking up the story. However, MTV was somehow able to completely sidestep this event, with not even a mention of the fight making it onto ‘Teen Mom 2.’
Unfortunately, her antics have continued to get worse as time goes on. Her marijuana use has escalated to opiate use, she’s been arrested multiple times in one month, a quickie marriage (and subsequent divorce) has also included a pregnancy (allegedly, still not buying that, just for the record) and miscarriage.
What does this mean for the series that made her famous? Unfortunately, her latest hi-jinks may have put the final nail in the already-closing coffin of ‘Teen Mom 2.’
By all accounts, the show was on its way out. The third season has almost finished airing, and the fourth season has been taped and is in the bag. However, the possibility of a fifth season was apparently still lingering. With her latest divorce/pregnancy/miscarriage drama, Jenelle has likely killed all hope of the series continuing.
Why? Jenelle has become a liability to the show and the network. It was, in fact, MTV that allegedly encouraged Jenelle’s mother, Barbara, to come to New Jersey back in September and fetch her strung-out daughter from Kieffer Delp’s house because they feared for her safety. Of course, this can not be confirmed; however, everyone that The Ashley has spoken to about this confirms that it did, indeed, happen.
If MTV were to choose to continue to follow the four girls of ‘Teen Mom 2,’ they risk having to deal with the possibility that one of their four stars could die on them. Although that may sound harsh, it’s simply a reality, especially when you are dealing with a person who is using very dangerous drugs, engaging in risky behavior, dealing with bottom-of-the-barrel people and seemingly having no concern for her own health or well-being.
Last year, ‘Teen Mom’ star Amber Portwood‘s life went from entertaining trainwreck to serious and sad when she pleaded with the judge to send her to prison in order to save herself from drug abuse and, most likely, death. Her life, once funny fodder for us celebrity journalists, eventually took a turn and became just plain sad. There’s nothing funny about a girl on the brink of destruction, pleading for help.
MTV was blamed for what happened to Amber. Would Amber still have suffered from mental problems had she never crossed paths with the network? Yes. Would Amber still have gotten involved in drugs? Probably. However, she received money and fame from the show that most definitely helped to escalate and support her already existing problems.
After what happened with Amber, it’s just too risky for the network to continue following someone like Jenelle. This is a girl that feeds off of her fan base, constantly posting play-by-plays of her latest drama, looking for constant gratification and attention from people she doesn’t know but that admire her because they watch her on their TV for an hour a week. Giving a person like this fame and fortune is like handing a crack addict a pipe and telling them, “Go nuts!”
The Ashley firmly believes that there will not be a fifth season of ‘Teen Mom 2.’ How can MTV possibly continue to claim that this show is a docu-series about motherhood with Jenelle pulling these crazy stunts on a daily basis? She will essentially make them look like fools.
Unfortunately, Jenelle’s antics have likely ruined it for the other three girls, and the fans. Could the show been saved? Definitely. Had MTV replaced Jenelle in the second season, when things started to really go sour, or if someone had simply restricted her social media usage, things might have been different. Of course, The Ashley is not claiming that the only reason the show won’t be picked up for a fifth season is because of Jenelle, but it was surely a sizable part of that decision.
The Ashley hopes that Jenelle will eventually get the help that she needs– real help, off-camera, without the glare of the media and the ability to constantly update her fans on every dramatic event of her life. Her stint in rehab during Season 2 was nothing more than a joke, a shoddy attempt by MTV to make it look like she was getting help and straightening up her life.
Several insiders that The Ashley has spoken with say that Teen Mom 3 will be very different. MTV probably thought that casting someone like Jenelle would be great for ratings (they were right!) but that has obviously blown up in their faces and they certainly don’t need to have something like this happen again.
The Ashley will continue to write about the shows, and, on occasion, maybe even Jenelle. Please realize that this was a special opinion piece, and my opinions may be different from yours.
That being said, The Ashley wanted to let her readers know that she has something very exciting coming for y’all next month! You are going to love it (trust me) so please stay tuned! The announcement will be coming shortly!
I know I’m late on this article, but I wanted to share something.
I am 26-years-old and I have bipolar disorder, like Jenelle and Amber. Notice that I didn’t say that I SUFFER from it. Why? Because I take my medication, have been to intensive therapy, and I have a strong relationship with the LORD and my husband and family.
It upsets me that the two people that have bipolar disorder from the Teen Mom franchise have not tried to overcome it. Instead, they showed Amber on a heartbreaking downward spiral, which resulted in her having to plead for a jail sentence.
Then there’s Jennelle, who isn’t trying to get help at all. I believe that you were 100% correct in saying that Jenelle could end up dead.
I feel like the media loves people with mental illnesses that are complete train-wrecks. They don’t ever want to feature someone who has landed on their feet and is doing well.
It is my hope and prayer that the media starts to get more interested in wonderful women like Catherine Zeta-Jones and Demi Lavato. Those women are survivors.
So, in the end, I loved your article. Keep up the good work. I’ll continue to read what you have to say. God Bless!
Amazing piece The Ashley!
Very well thought out and well written.
I don’t understand how MTV has kept going with her through all the drama, violece and drug use. It’s basically like they are endorsing it the more they keep going with her.
I seriously miss the early days of 16 & Pregnant when the girls were shown through their struggles, and how they tried to overcome them.
I’m excited to hear about what you have in store for us!
Well said. I just couldn’t bring myself to finish Teen Mom 2, too much ridiculousness. I have no tolerance for Jenelle because all I can think about is how an older Jace will feel when he sees the show. Sad.
Wow, i flipped over here from the NYT piece not knowing you had helped contribute, that was a good article!
I was really invested in the girls on Teen Mom but have weaved out in the later seasons. I have known my fair share of Jenelles in my life, one is my aunt and the other a newly acquired SIL. Sadly, neither has it gets better ending.
Each has lived out a similar life to Jenelle and even paralleling each other in having a 2nd child to drag through the mud shortly after the first. While thier stories are all a little different the one thing they all have in common are enablers. For my relatives it was thier families excusing thier shortcomings in life and as parents with a “someday they will get it together,” attitudes. For jenelle it is infamy, fans and being tabloid fodder. In the last few months there have been stories popping up all over, i have no doubt she is making money on some of these so called exclusives.
Taking Jenelle of tv is the smartest thing mtv has thought of in awhile. Without a platform she can just fade away and deal with her issues privately.
Wonderful article, Ashley! I think your opinion speaks for a lot of viewers.
I think that they probably should stop showing Jenelle on this show for Jenelle’s sake. The money and attention are just making things so much worse for her. I wish she could see how many people really want her to turn her life around. Its not too late. She doesn’t have to have things turn out like Amber if she gets it together. She needs to move out of her area though. I know people will get on her about being away from Jace, but its the best thing for her. Get her away from these 3 douchebags guys she keeps circling between and away from all of her drama. She is obviously an intelligent girl, and its sad to watch this happen to her. Sometimes I think if she had just ONE friend who wasn’t interested in her for fame or money she might be able to get her head on straight. I think that saying her life is not the life of a typical teen mother is false, though. While there are plenty of teen moms like Kail, who work and study hard, there are also quite a few just like Jenelle who dump their kids on their mothers and go out and party. Or develop drug habits. Its a rather regular story, actually. You just don’t typically see it plastered all over your TV unless you’re watching cops or some type of court show. Hopefully someone does something for Jenelle before its too late.
I think Janelle will be lucky if she turns out like Amber; she’s turning her life around in a meaningful way. Janelle keeps saying that she is turning her life around, but in reality she’s just digging herself deeper and deeper into this hole.
the only person who says amber has turned her life around is her brother, and he has always been delusional when it comes to amber. its all well and good to say she’s “turned her life around” while she is behind bars. Who knows what will happen when she gets released?! Only time will tell with either of these girls, but I genuinely believe Jenelle is more intelligent. I think Amber has far more maternal instinct and hopefully that can pull her through.
Nice article. I don’t see a reason at this point for MTV to continue with this show. Where do these girls struggle in motherhood? Last night’s episode was just jaw dropping in regard to Leah. She deliberately took out her IUD? It is very apparent she finds her worth in men wanting to be with her/her having kids and that is just plain sad. In addition, it just solidified how easy it is for her to lie and make herself out to be the innocent party. She stated she got pregnant while on BC (so y’all, it wasn’t my fault, I tried to protect myself) and even alluded to the fact that her pregnancy failed due to the IUD–which is quite common. She also lied when the rumor of her sleeping with Robbie came out and was fine w/her supporters (including family/friends that knew different) bashing him, yet it was also true. She still insists (as does Jeremy) that she did not cheat, ever, but admitted to it on camera during two different reunion events. So we have a junkie, a liar who has no real self worth, and a spoiled lazy brat showcased for entertainment. No thanks, MTV.
That drives me crazy about Leah! She has absolutely no idea who she is, and is clearly convinced she’s only worthwhile as long as she has a husband.
I also feel terrible for her, though. She needs so much serious therapy. If you watch her closely, she is constantly starting things and giving up. I think part of the problem is that she isn’t that smart, but people probably have spent her whole life telling her that she is, so she doesn’t have super realistic expectations for what she is going to be able to achieve, especially coupled with her laziness. Kail and Chelsea (say what you will about them) are both pretty hard workers, and Kail has had way more adversity to overcome than the other girls, I think. Chelsea and Leah, and to an extent even Janelle, have amazing support systems whereas Kail had to build one of those, too.
Sometimes I wonder what the girls on the series really think of each other. They seem like they actually are friends in real life, but watching Leah and Janelle make stupid decision after stupid decision must be mind-boggling to people that know them.
100% agree! She has taken it too far, Teen Mom is no longer about “Teen Moms” and their struggles.
I Honestly hope they cancel TM2 for this reason. Too much drama..
First of all, “The Ashley?” How stupid referring to yourself in 3rd person. This article has absolutely no facts its just a huge mess of thoughts. Next time you want to write a solid piece for people to believe you, learn the facts.
You’re an idiot.
On another note, have you heard about the petition to take Jenelle off that started a few days ago? http://www.change.org/petitions/mtv-take-jenelle-evans-off-teen-mom-2
She did mention that this is an opinion piece, which every solid journalist is allowed. And she did mention facts as well, so no one really knows what your deal is. And why would you care if she refers to herself as “the Ashley?” It’s her brand.
Gossip Girl always referred to herself (or himself) as Gossip Girl, i think The Ashley should be able to do the same 🙂
please dont let jenelle ruin this for all the girls, i love this show but MTV cant control what jenelle does.
No one can control Jenelle – Thats the problem.
Haha, Jenelle can’t even control Jenelle.
This is the classiest article I have read in a very long time. I thank you. I signed a petition yesterday I think Janelle needs to be removed. I dont believe the other girls should be penalized. I fealt bad for janelle season 1 after that everythin went down hill. I applaud amber she is working hard. Hope janelle does the same for Jace.
I think they should just get Janelle off the show and still continue. It’s not fair to the other girls and fans that love the show. It’s my favorite. Wish it came on everyday!
Good article. I actually tweeted Jenelle last year calling her a screw up and I had all sorts of people sending me nasty tweets back. I know I was right (I was rude about it, yes). She continues to prove me right though. I feel sad that people actually look UP to her. She is a beautiful girl, but she needs to get her stuff together!! I feel bad for Jace most of all.
I think they should just get rid of Jenelle Evans. problem solved.
I would be really interested to hear your thoughts on the casting choices for TM3. Part of me thinks that they chose to circumvent having one of the girls being a mess by casting Alex Sekella; her boyfriend is the mess. This way, they can have all of the drama they wanted, but if they have to drop him it’s not as big a deal as it would be if they were to drop one of the Moms.
The rest of the girls seem like they’re sticking pretty true to the types. Mackenzie and Josh are clearly the Catelynn/Tyler or Leah/Corey, Katie seems to be a Farrah/Chelsea to me, and Brianna is looking primed to be the Maci/Kail, telling it like it is. I am sort of surprised that Lindsay Harrison didn’t get picked (even though I couldn’t stand her when I was following her on Twitter) because she had an interesting story, and fans seemed to respond to her, whereas Alex was infuriating when she wasn’t falling flat.
Side note, don’t get me started on Miss Sekella. I’m primed to hate her because of her 16&P episode where Matt told her he didn’t want anything to do with the kid, and she chose not to place her child with a family that she knew who would basically let her have all the good parts of parenthood because “something came over [her]” and she thought he was going to change his mind and step up. No. You’re an idiot.
as far as i know mtv did ask Lindsey to be part of teen mom 3, but she refused. she also said at that time that mtv portrayed a false image of her and her family and wanted to do a whole scripted story of her life.
Both of those things make sense to me. Thanks for updating!
you’re welcome 🙂
I am interested in seeing how TM3 plays out. After watching her 16&P episode, I’m worried that Alex will be the Jenelle/Amber of the season and we don’t need anymore kids thinking this kind of behavior is what will get you on your own TV show. I’d love to see the girls get paid a little more than minimum wage and the big bucks given to the kids in a tryst that can’t be touched until they’re 18. Maybe then we could really see what it means to be a struggling teen mom.
I really, really hated that Alex girl. She repeatedly TRIED to cry both on the reunion and on the show. Most of these girls try to hold their tears back.. not this one. She wants the sympathy and attention.
Very well written! I agree with you on everything, but would also like to add that no matter how much money a person claims their husbands makes, does not entitled that someone who is “preaching it is hard to be a teen mom” to get pregnant for the third time! She is guilty of the social media antics as well, no where near as much a Jenelle, but people who know how to read know exactly what is going to happen before it airs except for the lies they feed into it to make themselves look better! Thank The Ashely for not sugar coating it!
100% agree. well written!
Really well written and thought out piece. I totally agree with everything you wrote.