Teen Mom 2 star Leah Messer has long been candid about her upbringing, from her estranged father’s struggles with addiction to his absence for a majority of her childhood. Here’s everything you need to know about her dad, Gary Lee Miller.

Gary Lee Miller Previously Appeared on Teen Mom 2

During Teen Mom 2‘s episode showcasing her wedding to her ex-husband Jeremy Calvert, Gary was the one who walked her down the aisle.

Gary Lee Miller Was Involved in Her Life Until She Was 6 or 7

“I wanted a dad. I was someone who really wanted that father figure,” she said in a 2018 episode of her “Life Reboot” podcast. “I wanted that feeling of love from a man.”

'Teen Mom 2': Who Is Leah Messer's Dad? Meet Her Estranged Father Gary Lee Miller

Gary Lee Miller Struggled With Addiction

In her 2020 memoir, Hope, Grace & Faith, Leah openly addressed how she came to terms with her father’s addiction.

“With the opioid epidemic we are facing today, my dad always ties into that,” she wrote. “I started doing my own research on when my dad started struggling with addiction and why he struggled with addiction.

“Come to find out in between 1995 and 1997 they started prescribing oxycodone. It was a highly addictive drug they swore wasn’t an addictive drug,” she added. “My father broke his neck and back working on bridges in West Virginia. From there he went to some doctor for worker’s comp. That’s how my dad became addicted to the medication and still is to this day.”

In addition to saying she’d “provide treatment facilities in West Virginia,” she said that she had “been there. I went through it. I’ve done it” when it comes to her own stint in rehab and struggles with addiction.

While she faced adversity in her childhood, those problems allowed her to “thrive” and give her “daughters [Adalynn, Aliannah and Aleeah] the life I always wish I had.”

Gary Lee Miller Has Contacted Leah Messer Over the Years

While Gary has tried to connect with his estranged daughter, Leah has struggled with allowing him back in her life.

“When your dad calls and you haven’t heard from him in quite some time,” she wrote in a 2017 tweet. “Do you answer or let your voicemail do the talking?”

“It’s the same thing every call,” she added. “Maybe this time he really is going to choose life over death. All I can do is pray.”

“When he finally showed back up, it was not good,” Leah later said on the “Life Reboot” podcast of a time when he tried reconnecting. “It was definitely a turning point. I can love myself enough, and I don’t need him to fill that place in my life.”

If you or someone you know is struggling with substance abuse, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).

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