Alcohol-addled ex-TV reporter turns to Dr. Phil for help

Alcohol-Addled Ex-TV Reporter Turns to Dr. Phil for Help
Alcohol-Addled Ex-TV Reporter Turns to Dr. Phil for Help

Former journalist Christi O'Connor went from winning three Emmys and living in a million-dollar home to becoming homeless after her drinking resulted in multiple arrests. Wanting to make a change, she turned to Dr. Phil for help.

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"Finally she says, 'You know what? I've got to have somebody that can grab this thing by the ears and pull us back together. If I don't do something dramatic, my daughters are done with me,'" Dr. Phil said. "So she reached out."

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Dr. Phil used tough love to help point Christi back in the right direction. She apologized to her daughters on the show for how her mistakes affected their lives.

This comes after 20/20's Elizabeth Vargas admitted to alcoholism last year.

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"As you know, the idea is 'I'll sleep on Sunday,' because you're running, you're working the edits, you're working against deadline," Dr. Phil told ET's Nischelle Turner. "The next thing you know, you're taking a pill, you're drinking."

Substance abuse has often been a plague to on-air reporters. ABC's Dan Harris said his 2004 panic attack was because of his cocaine and ecstasy use, and Fox News' Gregg Jarrett is still off the air after he was arrested last May, reportedly while intoxicated.

It is still to be determined whether Christi will return to her on-air profession.

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"I don't know if she will want it back, but her instincts are intact -- her ability to see and recognize a story and to pull it together is fully intact," Dr. Phil said. "If she wants to do this again, no doubt about it."

Christi's story airs Thursday on Dr. Phil.

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