Troubled ‘Unexpected’ Dad Max Schenzel Completes Alcoholics Anonymous Retreat: “It’s Been 29 Days Since I Changed My Everyday Life Routine”

“I’m back!”

Max Schenzel is giving his fans (and haters) an update on his life and recovery.

The Unexpected dad recently returned home from an Alcoholics Anonymous retreat, and took to Instagram to reveal how his recovery has allowed the people he cares about most to return to his life. 

“On my way home right now from a AA retreat,” Max captioned a photo of himself and a friend posted on Sunday. “Today It’s been 29 days since I changed my everyday life routine. I forgot how great life was because I let life’s problems defeat me and deceive me into thinking that what I was doing was justified.

“I watched myself make mistakes that lead to bigger mistakes as I slowly caused damage in every relationship I had.”

View this post on Instagram

On my way home right now from a AA retreat. Today It’s been 29 days since I changed my everyday life routine. I forgot how great life was because I let life’s problems defeat me and deceive me into thinking that what I was doing was justified . I watched myself make mistakes that lead to bigger mistakes as I slowly caused damage in every relationship I had . I got my daughter in my life, my lady, my father, my experienced sponsor, and the guy in my picture is one of my real few friends that I have left. I got a long way to go still but I am genuinely happy with life and I feel confident when I wake up and excited when I go to sleep. Life is a process and god puts signs in it that you have to pay attention to. Trust the process and everything else will follow . Everyone has issues in life, and everyone’s capable of overcoming them. God bless everybody and have a great Sunday! #gocards🏈 #blessed

A post shared by Max Schenzel️️ (@max.schenzel) on

Based on his posts to Instagram Stories, Max had been attending a men’s retreat at the Whispering Pines Camp in Prescott, Arizona.

As fans of the TLC show know, Max has struggled with addiction for years and has been at the center of the battle between his father, Todd Schenzel and his baby mama, Chloe Mendoza (whom he shares daughter Ava with). Max landed himself behind bars earlier this year, most recently in July for driving with a suspended license. He went to rehab this spring after failing multiple drug tests that were required as part of his probation from a 2018 felony theft conviction. 

That stint in rehab caused Max to miss Chloe’s senior prom. Although the ‘Unexpected’ mom ended up attending, she did so without Max.

View this post on Instagram

Sorry but I had the best dates.

A post shared by Chloe Mendoza (@chloeemendozaa) on

Court documents from March state that Max “tested positive for Fentanyl on three occasions and recently started intensive outpatient treatment.”

Since then, Max has been trying to clean up his act, and, apparently, sobriety has helped him mend at least some of the important relationships in his life.

“I got my daughter in my life, my lady, my father, my experienced sponsor, and the guy in my picture is one of my real few friends that I have left,” he wrote. “I got a long way to go still but I am genuinely happy with life and I feel confident when I wake up and excited when I go to sleep.

“Life is a process and God puts signs in it that you have to pay attention to,” Max added. “Trust the process and everything else will follow. Everyone has issues in life, and everyone’s capable of overcoming them. God bless everybody and have a great Sunday!”

View this post on Instagram

First date, kinda nervous.

A post shared by Chloe Mendoza (@chloeemendozaa) on

Chloe “liked” Max’s Instagram post, and Max’s ‘Unexpected’ co-star McKayla Adkins sent over some encouraging words as well.

“Happy for you!” she wrote. 

Max’s father, Todd, also congratulated Max on how far he’s come.

“Proud of you son,” Todd wrote. “From mistakes to greatness. Let that be your story.”

Max’s “story” may not be public for very long. Last week, Chloe took to her Instagram channel to announce that she does not plan to return for the fourth season of ‘Unexpected.’ (Well…she said she was “99.9% sure” she wouldn’t be back…)

“I feel like my family is over it,” she explained. “My parents are done with it, I’m kind of done with it too now.”

RELATED STORY: ‘Unexpected’ Star Chloe Mendoza Says She Will Not Return for Season 4

(Photos: TLC; Instagram)

24 Comments

  1. Good old Whispering Pines! I went to Girl Scout camp there.

    I can’t stand Max, but I’m glad he’s actively trying to get his life back on track. As for Chloe, I think she just has a lot of growing up to do. I think being off the show will be a good thing for her. I hope she’s successfully in college and gets her degree.


  2. Max’s father and Chloe’s mother are very similar. They are both control freaks who think they can still parent their adult children. I kinda feel bad for Jessica not because of Chloe but because she seems like a really miserable individual. Jessica’s ranting and raving while her husband (or boyfriend) sits on the couch and says nothing to the camera makes me laugh. IMO, Jessica ranks right up there with Farrah’s crazy mother.


    1. I’m not a parent, but I don’t think parent/teaching obligations stop once a person turns 18. A “real” parent is always gonna try to steer their child(ren) in the right direction, despite their age. It’s out of love, not control.

      Jessica has every right to express her thoughts/opinion about Max. She only wants the best for her daughter. And Max’s father has every right to be angry about his drug use and how Max is seemingly unwilling to get treatment. He only wants the best for his son.


        1. I may spank kids and say things I don’t mean like “drop dead”. But at least the people in my life that matter give me respect.

          You don’t like me, and to paraphrase one of my favorite movies “frankly my dear I don’t give a damn”.

          You need to get a life and stop taking everything so seriously.


    2. Hey Stan!

      “Adult” children? PLEASE. Max might be a legal adult but he’s yet to act adult in any way, shape, or form. He patently refuses to take responsibility for ANYTHING, has idiotic future plans without any plausible way to manifest them, and is repeatedly ungrateful for all the money his pops is throwing at his immature legal shenanigans. Kid is not an adult.

      Does Chloe pay any bills? Does she live on her own? Is she making any attempt to to be independent? No, she’s bitching about not being able to go to Prom. Another comment about that situation…she’s far more concerned about the FATHER OF HER CHILD being able to take her to Prom than she is about his taking an opportunity to arrest his addiction to a drug that is KILLING PEOPLE BY THE THOUSANDS. Max could’ve easily OD’d before, during, or after the dance – but he would’ve avoided ruining Chloe’s Prom dream! So adult, right?

      Dealing with the consequences of being too foolish to use birth control – or, more accurately, making
      you PARENTS deal with the consequences – doesn’t make someone an adult. Any pair of fully-functional (physically!) teenagers with basic knowledge of human anatomy can procreate; that certainly doesn’t instantly make them “adults”.

      Also? Your saying Max’s father and Chloe’s mother are very similar shows that you know jack shit about addiction – or being the parent of an addict. Try to comment about things with which you’re at least vaguely familiar, ok?


      1. She didn’t even think he had a problem and was way more concerned about missing her prom. Talk about not having priorities straight!


      2. Because it wouldn’t matter whether Max got clean and a job and became the best father ever. It still wouldn’t be enough for Jessica. If she hadn’t been such a control freak with Chloe from the get go – Chloe would’ve worked out Max was no good for herself. But Chloe seems to want to rebel against her controlling mother. And Jessica can’t see it. Max tried at the start. He wanted to be involved in the baby shower. He turned up at the babys baptism. Jessica has tried to shut him out from the beginning and he will never be good enough for her. I’m not suggesting he doesn’t need to get his life together. But Jessica is NOT helping with her bullshit


        1. Chloe is a stupid, naive teenager who is obviously blinded by love for her baby daddy.

          How do you know that “it wouldn’t be enough for Jessica if Max got clean, got a job and became the best dad ever”, he has done 0% of those things. “Actions speak louder than words”, he has to do those things to prove himself worthy of Jessica and Nate’s respect. The only thing that Jessica and Nate have asked is that Max isn’t allowed in their house. It’s not like anyone is trying to keep Chloe or Ava away from Max.

          And, another thing, Chloe’s is only 17 years old. So, by law, SHE (Jessica) SETS THE RULES!!


          1. Jessica, is that you? Stop ranting and raving about Max. It makes you look mentally unhinged. Take a different approach already. You are only pushing Chloe farther and farther away!


          2. No it’s not, and why shouldn’t she rant and rave about Max. He’s no good. He never has been, and if he doesn’t change he never will be.

            If Chloe would open her pretty brown eyes and use her brain, she’d see that her mom has a point.


          3. Do i didn’t dumbass. I commented, Stanley commented and I commented back. Learn to read and take another look Honey Buns.


          4. @Leah’s Meth Pipe, @kailandleahkissingbythesea started it.

            To quote @kailandleahkissingbythesea from another thread, they said “don’t feed the troll”. So, this person needs to stop.


  3. Chloes parents r done with the show because they made themselves out to be assholes… her mum is a complete control freak! I hope she watched last season with embarrassment


  4. Young or not, he had a choice. He could have easily chosen to “follow is heart” as opposed to peers, fans or heredity.

    Yes, he can change. But he has to want it. He has to prove those who are cheering him on right and those that are against him (like Chloe’s mother) wrong.


  5. Look, he’s a very very young kid with a tremendous amount of pressure on him. That’s no excuse to make bad decisions but it’s happened. I hope the best for him chloe and Ava. He is still so young that he has time to prove himself and turn his life around. My boyfriend went from an alcoholic, irresponsible, childish selfish person to a fantastic, sober, caring father who works 60+ hours a week- through the right steps forward. It is possible max!! You need support from those that believe in you, You are doing better already. Those of you who are so judgy, give people a break. Appreciate those taking positive steps forward in life and don’t be so hard on others. Life is about lifting each other up (cough cough Chloes mom) not tearing everyone down!!


      1. Addiction is one hell of a demon that makes you do stuff your sober mind would never even consider. Glad he had gotten help so early on in his life.

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