Much thanks to MaRia for typing it up.
MITM: Denise Thank You for being here
Denise: Oh, my pleasure. Thank you.
MITM: Has this been a tough few years for you?
Denise: Yes it has, this has been a very trying time for me, and for
my family, and for my son as well. Umm, it was not an easy transition
to get ourselves out of denial, nevermind himself, ya know he getting
out of denial as well about his addiction. But, atleast the saving
grace there was he did put himself into rehab of his own accord
before anything really, really drastic happened to him.
MITM: I know it’s hard as a mother to blame your kid for anything,
and, and one of the things that came out on the OPrah episode was you
talking about people around him forcing him into a lifestyle like
this. Obviously there has to be a certain amount of blame put on AJ
himself. Tell us about the people around him that made him become
Denise: Well, I mean unfortunately there’s alot of people out there
in this business that prey on people like my son, who have big
hearts, who are generous, and as he became more successful and gained
more money, is one of the things that you can when youre successful.
And he would be the big spender, he would be out there showing
everybody a good time. And unfortunately, what we call the “Glomers”
would attach onto him, ast hey did the other Boys too. But these
particular were rather incideous, because of how they affected him
with the drugs and pushed them at him for their own benefit, really.
MITM: This created an atmosphere where it was available?
Denise: Oh yeah, definitely.
MITM: WHen did you realize that your son was addicted and your son
needed to get help?
Denise: Well, it was about a few months before he put himself in
rehab. The Boys did an intervention that they spoke about on the show
actually and before he had gone out on that last leg of the tour……
MITM: Did they call you and contact you and talk about it?
Denise: Yes, Kevin called me and told me to meet the Boys at Alex’s
house here in Orlando at the time and said that they decided that if
they were going to give him one more shot, if he wanted to try and go
on tour, and try to clean up his act that they thought I should go
out on the road with him and stay with him for awhile, because they
felt that when he had a family member out on tour, he copes better
MITM: Hmmm, so they then did the intervention with him now. There was
months prior to this that the tabloids were all reporting stories
about AJ. Were you reading some of those tabloid reports saying they
weren’t true? How were you feeling at that time?
Denise: I mean, it was unfortunate too, because there was a situation
where he was letting anybody into his home, and at the time we didn’t
even realize that there were even some crew people and people that we
have known for years that were supplying him with drugs. And those
people also would take advantage of his kindness. When they came to
Orlando, they would stay at his house, they would be there, they
would use his kitchen, they would sleep in his house, and then they
would, ya know plant these women there, yanno to set him up, and they
would gain off of it, by selling pictures. It was pretty…. nasty.
At the end of the Oprah Show when you were guests on there the rest
of the Backstreet Boys, they were kind of speaking about how AJ
seemed to be searching for himself, searching for acceptance always,
and do you think that’s why he, more so then the other Boys felt prey
to these kind of things?
Denise: I think that was part of it, yes. When he was in rehab one of
the things they told us, and he learned about himself was the fact
that he was a “People pleaser”, and this is just a personality trait
that can really get you into trouble. I’m the same way, we always
give people too much of the benefit of the doubt, I think we’re not
big enough skeptics sometimes.
MITM: Denise. when you get to the bare bones of this story, your son,
even though he was famous and he had these people surrounding him,
supplying him with the drugs and the lifestyle. It’s still just the
story of one, single mother’s battle to save her son. Do you blame
yourself at any point as a parent saying, Maybe I did something
wrong? Or is it, because it’s so far removed in a celebrity story
that he had the money and the fame around him, that maybe it’s a
Denise: Um, no I think that you hit the nail right on the head. I
think that it is the story of a mother and son, and it is a story of
a mother trying to protect her son from the outside world, whether or
not he was a celebrity, given the situation if you have the money and
you have the availabilty and go to places where you can obtain drugs,
and you can hang with bad people. I mean, it’s just too easy, ya know
to get it. And if that’s something that you get yourself involved
with those type of people it’s going to happen. If you are prone to
that, to accepting that, But umm.
MITM: Do you ever wish that AJ never went into this band, lived a
normal life and was a normal person?
Denise: Ummm, well….. Ya know I think that his desitny was cut out
when he was a young man. I mean, he chose to go into this, with his
eyes open in the beginning and he’s taking it, for what it is. And i
think it’s just in him, it’s in his blood, it’s like any drive you’d
have for any career, and I think….
MITM: Because, I saw Michael Jackson’s Mother on 20/20 On Friday and
talking about Michael, and talking about these charges brought up
against her, and Catherine Jackson actually said she wished her
family never went into the Entertainment Business. Um, and just lived
a normal life, living in Gary, Indiana. And I wonder sometimes,
especially with you dealing what AJ went through if you ever wish
that you Guys just lived a normal life, ya know… living on a normal
block, with AJ working a normal job?
Denise: I don’t know. That’s hard to say, because I really don’t
know. I always used to say when he was a kid, because of his outgoing
personality, as well, If you don’t stay in the Entertainment Business
you’ll always have a good job as a lawyer or an evangelus (Sp?…
LMAO, don’t even know what it is. Someone wanna ring my bell here?)
MITM: Ms. McLean, what happened or what’s the status with AJ’s
engagement, because we know the wedding was on, and then they had to
sent out invitations saying that they weren’t going to have the
Denise: As far as I jknow, his situation with his fiance has pretty
much ended, I think they speak on again, off again. I don’t see any
immediate plans, he hasn’t told me about any immediate plans of
getting back together with her. I think he’s focusing now on getting
back together with the group, and going into the studio the last I
heard. (Wooo whoo, anywaysss)
MITM: DId that relationship fall apart because of his addiction
Denise: Umm, not really she was there for him when he went through
his rehab, and had gone through all this. And actually, she had went
through some family problems herself. And no, i don’t think that
really had too much to do with it. I think that… I just think he
was NOT ready to make that spep. And I think that hit him a little
late in the plans. (Laughs)
MITM: The big story that we got this morning Denise, was that Aaron
Carter trying to sever ties from his Mom, Aaron’s brother Nick Carter
is in the Backstreet Boys, and you know Nick well, and I’m sure you
know…. Ms. Carter.
Denise: mmm Hmmm.
MITM: I know that one of the things Aaron says is that his Mom spent
some of his money frivolously (sp?), Took $100,000 without his
knowledge , how much control do you people have, well… I know AJ is
older, but did you have control of his money when he was younger?
Denise: Well, when he was a minor, before he turned 18, Ya know you
have to go to court and become a guardian, and part of that is,
you’re a guardian in a parental standpoint, You can travel and you
can make decisions, and sign contracts. But, when it comes to money,
you do have to go to court and set up a guardianship thats reviewed
by the court. I mean, I… you have to turn in reports, and hey
scrutenized you pretty heavily, here in Florida. Now, I don’t know…
they have residences in different places, I don’t know where they
might have set up their guardianship that it might not be that– that
MITM: Were you close at all to the Carters?
Denise: Ummm, they I mean early on we were close. Uhh, when they were
on the road with Nick. And Alex and Nick were the only two minors in
the group, when they started. And uhh yeah, we had our conversations
MITM: Did you have good relations with them?
Denise: Yeah, I mean uhh… in the beginning everything was great.
And then, she wasn’t out on the road for quite awhile and Nick’s Dad
came out and for awhile Nick’s Uncle came out, so they kind of had a
family rotation going on. But, I actually think I got to know his Dad
more then his Mom, actually.
MITM: Hmm, interesting.
My final question would be about AJ today. We seen him on Oprah, I
mean he’s clean and sober and I’m wondering now that they’re going
back into the studio…. in 2004, I imagine the Backstreet Boys album
will probably come out (Weeeeee!!!!) Do you think AJ’s strong and his
mindset is there? Are they ready to go back on tour? Is he healthy
enough to take on this crazy lifestyle again?
Denise: I think so. I think he misses it. He has never done time off
well, He knows that and we know that. And it actually worries me more
when he’s not on the road , then when he’s on the road. So, I think
they’re ready. I think they’re all in a good place to get out there
and get back into the mainstream.