Path after rehab
the couple moved to Perth last year, but after only three weeks of working for the family law firm, his brothers found him unconscious after overdosing on benzos and opiates. SHALOM HOUSE Incapable of helping himself, Mr Steenhof sought help at Shalom House.
“I knew it was Australia’s strictest rehab and I made the counter-intuitive decision to apply precisely for this reason,” he said.
He said Shalom took a no-nonsense, cold turkey approach to rehabilitation.
“If you’re expecting to wander in and swan around smoking cigarettes and getting transferred from illegal drugs to legal drugs like Xanax and Valium you can forget about it,” he said.
“It’s a working rehabilitation so you’re not going to be sitting around navel-gazing; you’re going to be doing some good, hard, honest, productive work.”
In the radio interview last week, Mr Steenhof’s wife, who is a nurse, said she had covered up her husband's problems. WIFE'S WORDS “I was really naive and prideful at the start where I didn’t want to admit my marriage was not what it appeared to be and it was actually a big lie,” she said.
“I was brought up a Christian. Separation and divorce are just things you don’t talk about, so I hid a lot of what happened from family and friends.
“My Instagram looked beautiful with lovely photos and I tried to support Rich as best I could, but in hindsight I think I enabled a lot of his behaviour.”
She said it was incredibly difficult to have no contact with her husband for the first three months of his rehabilitation.
“It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life,” she said. “I was left to pick up all the pieces that were broken while he went off.
“I had my three girls and rent and school fees to pay. “I was very scared.” Even though the future remained uncertain, Mrs Steenhof said she had faith her husband would “lead” her family through what he has learnt at Shalom.
“At the start it was obviously heartbreaking for all of us, but in seven short months, just to see such an amazing change in him through the people at Shalom, but ultimately God’s changed his life,” she said.
Shalom House did not respond to Community News’ requests for an interview with Mr Steenhof. YANGEBUP’S Michelle Dolan is the 2019 Mrs Galaxy Australia.
The 28-year-old drag racing enthusiast swapped the Perth Motorplex track for the catwalk last month when she was one of 10 finalists named in the Mrs Galaxy Australia competition.
The mother of three said she had been “extremely nervous” before the pageant but she was in “utter shock” when her name was called out.
“I never let myself think that I had it in the bag, I was just grateful for the experience and to be there,” she said.
“The other girls in my section were all amazing and I knew it was going to be close.
“The look on my face in photos will show how shocked I was when I was called the winner.
“I’m so grateful for the opportunity though; not only have I won the Mrs Galaxy Australia title, I gained friends for life and I’ll be forever grateful for that.”
Ms Dolan will now travel to Florida in August to represent Australia in the 2019 Galaxy International Pageant.
She said she hoped she could use her new title to make a difference.
“I love to do charity work and help out where I can, and having the title makes it more accessible,” she said. “I hope I can inspire other women to step out of their comfort zones and try something different.”