Teen Mom Opts for Jail Over Rehab | The Fix
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Teen Mom Opts for Jail Over Rehab

Experts say Amber Portwood's decision to take five years' prison instead of treatment "will scar her for life."


Portwood claims she needs prison to get clean.
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By McCarton Ackerman


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We may have heard the last of Teen Mom's Amber Portwood for a while. The 22-year-old was sentenced to five years in prison after she asked the judge to impose her original sentence, stemming from a failed drug test last December while on probation for possession of drugs. Portwood could have gone to a long-term drug rehab instead, but told the judge she hated the program and had been using throughout it. Many experts are weighing in on her self-imposed sentence and say that—like in the case of Cameron Douglas—jail will ultimately do more harm than good. "Drugs, to begin with, will keep her a dependent victim. And prison, to end with, will scar her for life," says therapist Dr. Gilda Carle. The prison term also raises questions over the care of Portwood's three-year-old daughter. And while Portwood says she needs to be in jail in order to truly get clean, some suspect ulterior motives. “It is very sad that having a cute little girl to love isn’t enough to motivate Amber to get clean in a rehab facility, and that she asked to be put in prison instead," says Dr. Carole Lieberman, psychiatrist and author of Bad Girls: Why Men Love Them & How Good Girls Can Learn Their Secrets. "It almost seems as if she is doing this to avoid the responsibilities of motherhood.”

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