Since she first appeared on TLC, viewers were fascinated with Mama June and her unconventional family. We’ve watched her go through highs and lows– from bad relationships and health issues to encouraging weight loss and adopting healthy habits. But just when things seemed to be getting on track for Mama June, her life started spiraling out of control again. In a last-ditch effort to help, her family gathered together with Dr. Ish to stage an intervention. Here’s what happened.
They’ve All Changed
After first appearing on television in 2011, the Shannon family has fascinated American viewers. Since then, newfound fame has changed many family members—and not for the better. Alana “Honey Boo Boo” Thompson has grown up from her sassy little ways but the most striking change was seen in her mother, “Mama June” Shannon.
Alana and her siblings have been dealing with their mother’s wild ways for the last few years. It all culminated in an intervention.
It Hasn’t Always Been So Bad
The Shannon-Thompson family came to the limelight in 2011 when Alana was featured on TLC’s Toddlers & Tiaras. At the time, she was known as “Honey Boo Boo,” a sassy little six-year-old who became a hit with her hilarious one-liners.
It was enough to extend her 15 minutes of fame into her own television show, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo. With the show, America caught a glimpse into the lives of Alana and her interesting family.
They Tried To Start Over
In 2014, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo was canceled after four seasons and the person to blame was Mama June. She went through several questionable relationships during the show, including one with a convicted sex offender.
When she realized how much the relationship affected her family, she realized her kids and grandkids were more important to her. She picked up her entire family to move elsewhere with a clean slate. It was then that she had an idea.
It Needed To Be Said
Alana’s show may have met its end but that wasn’t it for the youngster and her family. In 2015, she and Mama June were invited to appear on The Doctors. June was confronted about her daughter’s weight and told that she needed to take control of Alana’s diet.
Alana was obviously struggling with obesity and unsurprisingly, Mama June was as well. She realized that she weighed 460 pounds and decided to take care of it with a sleeve gastrectomy.
A Jaw-Dropping Transformation
Mama June’s astounding weight loss journey was documented on her own show, Mama June: From Not to Hot, which debuted in February 2017. Mama June went under the knife to advance her weight loss but also hired a personal trainer and started dieting to maintain her goals. The first season saw her lose a total of 300 pounds, weighing 160 pounds and looking unrecognizable by the end.
But even though she lost the weight, the show wasn’t quite over.
She Got A New Man
Mama June: From Not to Hot may have documented the matriarch’s weight loss but it was still reality television. Viewers also got a glimpse into her and her family’s personal lives as well. Of course, this meant that we saw Mama June get into yet another relationship.
By the second season, she was dating a man named Geno and from what everyone could see, June was head over heels for him.
Geno Wasn’t What He Seemed
Mama June’s questionable choice in men always had her relationships in the headlines. But with Geno, she felt that she’d finally found the one. As it would turn out, things weren’t all that they seemed when The Daily Mail dug deep into Geno’s past.
It was discovered that he too had a criminal record and was convicted of criminal damage, theft, and burglary that had him incarcerated. It was just enough to spark the inevitable drama.
June’s Health Took A Turn
The revelation about Geno was enough for June to forget all about her progress. She not only started to gain her weight back but she also began suffering from a myriad of other alarming health issues.
Mama June became partially blind when she started losing sight in one of her eyes. On top of that, her limbs started swelling and turning red. Her daughters soon became very worried about what was happening to their mom.
Charged With Possession
Amid Mama June’s health problems, it wasn’t long before her relationship drama caught up with her. In May 2019, Mama June and Geno were arrested at an Alabama gas station for possession of drugs after a reported domestic dispute. June was found in possession of drug paraphernalia, while Geno had a needle in his pocket.
Geno was also charged with domestic violence and harassment. Still, they both made bail and were released from jail.
He Was Clearly A Bad Influence
Geno was clearly a bad influence on Mama June and her daughters knew it. Amid their brushes with the law, Geno was accused of infidelity. He also crashed his car into June’s garage while driving under the influence.
But none of it was enough to get Mama June to leave him. Those close to June believed that he was keeping her in a “mental prison” in an order to feed off her money, according to TMZ.
She Was Forced To Seek Treatment
Mama June was clearly in a downward spiral and her daughters couldn’t stand to see her that way anymore. Even the producers of the show had to intervene at one point, and eventually, June was forced to check in to the hospital to get the help that she needed.
While June was away at the hospital for a couple of days, her daughters had enough time to concoct a plan to get their mother back.
They Needed Advice
While June was at the hospital, her family began arrangements for an intervention. Alana and her older sister Pumpkin needed to talk some sense into their mom but they knew they couldn’t do it alone.
They employed television counselor Dr. Ish Major to advise them on staging on intervention. He warned that interventions could get messy and that things may not go exactly as planned. Pumpkin and Alana knew they needed to stay strong.
June Felt Ambushed
As predicted, the intervention didn’t go as planned. Once Mama June arrived at her sister’s house, she walked into a room to see Pumpkin, Alana, her other daughter Jessica, and her niece Amber all waiting to speak with her.
June was incredibly wary of the situation and refused to sit down with them. Instead, she instantly wanted to leave to get out of the house but no one was going to let her do that without putting their two cents in.
Everyone Cared About Her
19-year-old Pumpkin was the first to speak up. “Physically, it’s like you don’t care about your health. I’m concerned about you. We care about you. Alana cares about you. Jessica cares about you, Doe Doe cares about you and it’s like everybody’s trying to get you back healthy and you have tunnel vision and the only person you see is Geno,” Pumpkin told her.
In a confessional, Pumpkin admitted, “If this intervention doesn’t work, she’s mentally going to have an actual breakdown.”
June Had Admitted to Feeling Delusional and Paranoid
Everyone who was participating in the intervention knew that deep down, Mama June knew that she needed to change her ways. Pumpkin confessed that her mother had told her that she oftentimes feels delusional and paranoid, and can’t separate what’s real and what’s not.
June even cried to Geno, and told him that she felt that she needed to change, but had no idea where to start. The time was now, and even though June felt anxious to leave, her family and production team begged her to stay and hear them out.
She Finally Agrees to go to a Treatment Center
After much convincing, Mama June finally relented and agreed to go to a treatment center to get her life back on track. But, she told them, she didn’t want to go somewhere that would cause a commotion.
The team got her into a car and drove three hours to a treatment center. But as soon as she got there, Mama June began having second thoughts. Just twelve hours later, she checked herself out of the rehab and didn’t tell her family that she was leaving, or where she was going.
Of Course, Geno Picked Her Up, But They Didn’t Get Far
Without any of her family knowing or producers knowing, Geno drove to the treatment center and picked up Mama June just twelve hours after her family had convinced her to check-in. Secretly, they took off.
It wasn’t long before everyone found out where the couple headed to. That’s when June and Geno got into their argument in the gas station parking lot that led to their arrests. It also meant that when they got out, neither one was allowed to leave the state of Alabama.
Spotted At An Alabama Casino
Although they were ordered to stay away from each other, Geno and June were soon spotted together by security cameras at an Alabama casino. It appeared that they were living out of a hotel room at the resort.
At this point, June’s family was utterly devastated, as they couldn’t seem to do anything to keep June away from Geno. He was clearly toxic to June’s recovery, and she couldn’t escape his grasp.
Dr. Ish Helps the Girls Work Through Their Emotions
Back home, the family was reeling from their failure to get Mama June to commit to treatment. Luckily, Dr. Ish was there to help the girls get through the difficult time by trying to better understand what was happening, and how they could cope.
Pumpkin is just 19-years-old while Alana is just shy of 14. Neither wanted to lose their mother from their lives. But someone needed to be there for the girls, too.
Sugar Bear Signs Over Guardianship of Alana
Alana, Dodo and Pumpkin knew that they would need to stick together in order to put the pieces of their lives back together. In order to do this, someone needed to be the legal guardian of Alana, since June left.
Thankfully, Sugar Bear stepped up and signed over legal guardianship so that Pumpkin could legally take care of Alana. Together, the girls have created a support team for each other while they can only hope that one day Mama June will break away from Geno and get her life back on track.