Leah Messer Accuses MTV & ‘Teen Mom 2’ Producers of Taking Advantage of Her Drug Addiction; Says They Used it “For the Benefit of TV & Drama”

Leah dozed off while on the phone during a memorable scene from ‘Teen Mom 2’…

Leah Messer says some of her most-shocking moments on Teen Mom 2 should have never been filmed.

In a new feature article for Teen Vogue, Leah called out MTV and the production crew of ‘Teen Mom 2’ for continuing to film her during moments when her drug use was obvious and, at times, downright dangerous. (Some of these unforgettable moments include Leah nodding off while holding her newborn niece as cameras rolled, or when Leah mumbled about “dye in the baby’s head” during a drugged-up phone call with her daughter Ali’s nurse.) 

When asked by Teen Vogue if she felt that MTV had taken advantage of her by filming her while high, Leah stated that she feels they did.

“Yes,” she said. “You can see me high. Cut the cameras. You can see me falling asleep or whatever. Cut the cameras and immediately do an intervention…. instead of using it for the benefit of TV and drama.” 

Another memorable scene where Leah’s addiction was obvious…

Leah does credit MTV and the show’s producers with saving her from her addiction. As The Ashley told you way back in May 2015 that MTV basically forced Leah to go to an Arizona treatment center, even though Leah didn’t want to go at the time. (She initially refused to get on the plane, then went and left the center after less than a day. She eventually returned and completed the program, though.)

“The production source tells The Ashley that the show’s producers had to essentially force Leah to go,” The Ashley reported in 2015. “They used something in her contract terms to force her to go to rehab, and from what the source told The Ashley, producers basically refused to continue their contract with her until she went.”

In her new interview with Teen Vogue, Leah acknowledged that it was a producer from the show who pushed her to go to the rehab, after he viewed concerning footage of her driving. (To The Ashley’s knowledge, Leah’s trip to rehab was paid for by MTV as well.) 

“Y’all did me ding-dang dirty! But thanks for the free rehab!”

“It’s bittersweet, because I probably wouldn’t have been able to get the help I had without [MTV], so I thank them,” Leah told the magazine, adding that she feels the producers and network still could have taken action without putting it on-camera.

“It’s also like, damn, something could have been done differently, without a shadow of a doubt,” Leah said. 

In a statement to Teen Vogue, an unnamed ‘Teen Mom 2’ producer said the show’s producers and crew followed the “principles of documentary filmmaking — we document, we don’t intervene.” 

“My job is to bring trash TV to the masses!”

(This is not exactly true. There were, indeed, times The Ashley is aware of that the producers did intervene. The Ashley reported years ago, for instance, that, after witnessing Leah driving her twin daughters without car seats –when they were legally required to be in them– crew members stopped Leah from driving and purchased car seats for the girls. They have intervened in situations with other cast members as well.) 

For years, Leah hid the fact that she had been addicted to drugs, but she eventually came clean in 2018 and admitted that she had an addiction to prescription pills. In her 2020 memoir, Leah discussed her drug use and the dangerous ways she would get drugs.

“My kids wouldn’t have a mom had it not been for also MTV and [my manager at the time] Lindsay Reilly,” Leah said in a 2020 interview.

RELATED STORY: Leah Messer Responds After Her Former ‘Teen Mom 2’ Co-Star Jenelle Evans Shades Her For Bringing Her Kids to a Pride Parade; Jenelle Fight Back

(Photos: MTV)

23 Responses


  1. Well when that is all of the storyline you give them to air, it is not really their fault. It is not like this hasnt been going on for years having drug and tax problems in addition to being dumb af. Yep it is like you had no clue events were being documented from your silly life with cameras and rando paychecks showing up for no reason whatsoever. Leah, they already got you on the first swing when you were a teen mom remember? Some folks grow out of that phase and some wallow down further. Dont worry though, most of your castmates are dumpster fires too and Kail is probably a year and a half from being in your shoes. Maybe you should just stand on screen saying MONKEY the whole time so they have nothing to show…
    Idiot.


  2. I don’t think what they showed during the season was exploiting her addiction. I do however think the reunion show was exploitive. Cory and Co were actually just making fun of her while “dr” Drew just watched. He’s supposed to be an addiction specialist.


  3. Pay your taxes, and take responsibility for your actions Leah, that’s all on you girl.

    Grow the fk up.


  4. Leah will never take accountability for her actions. Its MTV’s fault she hasn’t paid taxes either. Is her cheating on Corey their fault too?


  5. How did she pass the hair folicle drug test?

    Also how did Jade’s fiance Sean keep passing the multple home tests he took? Was he using someone elses urine?

    Both of those things have always puzzled me.


  6. The only time I’d say that mtv should have intervened would be if they called police to report Leah driving her kids without car seats. Or if she was high and got behind the wheel of a car. I believe as good samaritans, mtv crew should have done those things. In theory- who cares about Leah if she’s driving while high? It’s the victims of her potential car accident that we’d feel bad for.


  7. I’ve personally had a prescription drug problem and I can honestly say that it is 100% on the addict to recognize that there’s an issue. No one ever shoved Ativan down my throat. I popped those willingly. For Leah to say MTV exploited her doesn’t even make sense. She signed a contract year after year to be filmed for a docuseries. She agreed that, good or bad, she would be filmed. She also chose to keep taking meds knowing they were doing more harm than good. This was not a 1 season issue. It went on for a while. I think MTV did their job in showing that she was fkd up, Corey calling her out, her lying about it, her getting treatment, and what her life is now. MTV also filmed Jenelle and Amber high (HIGH!) but at least they took some accountability for it. If anything, Leah is exploiting herself by making her addiction a whole ass personality trait.

    I’m glad she was able to turn things around. I’m glad her kids seem to be doing well. But she’s beyond grown. Yes, MTV probably paid for rehab and essentially paid for her drugs (how else would she get them?). But I don’t think the blame is entirely on them.


  8. Jenelle. Amber. Catelyn. Farrah. All filmed high. Rhyne, Keiffah, Andrew, Adam, Courtland, Chris also have filmed high.

    So this wasn’t some personal vendetta against poor Leah.

    Isn’t one of the points of rehab is to admit you’re an addict? So she knows she cant blame MTV,

    If it’s just so bad, quit and get a job somewhere


  9. She needs to shut it and be grateful they helped her. They filmed every user and that was probably the only honest thing. The show was about preventing getting pregnant so young and shows how hard it is. So stop your new direction in going more naked by the day, watch back how you were and if the show stops find a job. Corey is a great dad, you should coun’t your blessings.


  10. Yet she has had no issues continually filming year after year. I’m sure there have been things that even the moms have exploited to get some hefty cash in their pockets. I don’t know why she thinks that all of the sudden MTV is about positivity and looking out for their best interests. MTV is about money, money will always be number one. MTV has made them all undeserving millionaires. Sorry, don’t feel sorry for her. She financially benefited from that “drama”.


  11. It sounds like MTV had plenty of compassion for Leah. She is the one who signed up for the $400K per season paychecks for reality tv…taking responsibility for her own actions would be nice….


  12. Was it MTVs fault she didn’t purchase car seats for her kids, too? I mean, come on…When is Leah ever going to take responsibility for putting herself in a whole bunch of shit situations that affected her kids?

    If it wasn’t for MTV, she would have ended up just like her mother. She would be a strung out hillbilly living off food stamps with multiple marriages and probably more children under her belt.

    In the immortal words of Nathan, she’s trailer trash that hit the lottery.


  13. I have to agree. It was exploitive and downright dangerous for MTV to keep rolling film while the girl was nodding off. That’s when I quit watching Teen Mom and started searching for recaps, it’s obvious that filming and making bank is more important than the health and well being of cast members.

    But hey, gives y’all someone to judge, huh? No one ever seems to be bothered by MTV, rather, they want to blame the girls. Go fuckin’ figure.


    1. MTV didn’t make her an addict. MTV didn’t make her act that way. MTV did intervene when the actual immediate safety of children was in jeopardy. IN fact MTV stepped in more times-throughout the franchise, than I and probably most expected, to be honest.

      I don’t want to defend MTV, because I don’t really like them as a company and never have, but jfc man, stop! MTV didn’t make ANY of these dumbasses act the way they did, or do.

      Did they highlight it and make money off it? Yes they did-much in the same way ALL reality tv works. But these dumbasses made money off it too. So by your logic, they exploited themselves too, didn’t they? Even semi-scripted reality tv still presents us with an awful lot of… dun dun duuuunnnnnn…. reality. Reality is, she made some shitty life choices and the world got to see it. It sucks at the time, but she learned to do better, didn’t she? The judgements of others quite frequently leads to change (positive or negative). Without it, she could have easily killed her children.

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