Meredith Marks has prioritized her mental health after reaching breaking point last year.
“It’s been a tough year, there have been some pretty dark times,” the ‘Real Housewives of Salt Lake City’ star exclusively told Page Six, reflecting on the convergence of her beloved father’s death. , discord among his famous group of friends and a family member. fight against addiction.
“As you know, I like to disengage. So at the end of last winter, I left Utah,” she recalls. “I didn’t come back here for about five or six months. I really needed the time and space to process everything that had happened – both within my family and my circle of friends and how they handled what happened with my family .
Marks, 50, fled Salt Lake City for Provence, France, where she “found [her] zen” among the town’s picturesque lavender fields.
“It was a very spiritual journey for me. I went. I just needed time to decompress and heal myself,’ she says of her time in Europe, with no baseless speculation about when her late father’s memorial service was held.
“And, of course, therapy never hurts,” she acknowledges. “I really needed to go out there and take a lot of time for myself.”
Today, Marks feels strong enough to stand up for those struggling internally by sharing a story that once worried her off-camera: her nephew Alex Ruttenberg’s experience with drug addiction that came with his own life issues. Mental Health.
“My nephew went through a really tough time which peaked last year, but it started long before that. He was dealing with addiction and most addiction issues tend to be mental health related,” he said. she.
“He had gone to various establishments asking for help. In the end, he tried to kill himself, but we were able to find the appropriate help for him. for him. What works for one person doesn’t always work for the next.
The jewelry designer held a fashion show last week at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Salt Lake City to benefit the ADR Foundationa nonprofit created by Alex and his mother, Marks’ sister, Myra Ruttenberg, to help other families through the emotional — and sometimes costly — process of recovery.
“The aim of the ADR is to help others in their struggles. My sister is really working on finding the right facilities to donate at the moment,” she explains.
“That’s her goal, but she wants to see it through where she can work with specific families and give them the guidance to find the best places and help them pay for it.”
At Marks’ charity event, Myra thanked her “incredible sister” for bringing to light the “major mental health epidemic” that she says is currently plaguing young adults in America. Alex also detailed some of his “treacherous” journey to sobriety and stability.
“My journey started when I was much younger when my parents got divorced and I chose to deal with maladaptive behaviors like…lying [and] abuse everything that comes to hand. But I had so much support along the way,” he told the crowd, looking directly at his proud aunt.
“And without everyone in this room, I probably wouldn’t be here today.”
He added: “Anyone willing to work for treatment deserves a chance. Hardly anyone will get it right the first time. I went to rehab, I think, six times last year. Not every day is perfect, but I always wake up looking forward to the next one.
Marks’ heartwarming party saw models parade down the catwalk her luxury accessories and chic looks from designers August Getty, Irina Shabeyeva and Brooks Marks, the stylish son of Bravolebrity.
Later, attendees were treated to a surprise performance by musician Jake Wesley Rogers – who dedicated her song “Lavender Forever” to Meredith and the French pastures that helped her heal.
“It was such a beautiful night and a great reminder that I’m finally on the other side,” she tells Page Six, her voice full of relief.
“Over the new year, I was in Aspen and went to visit my father’s grave. I feel like that was the ultimate closing point for me on this whole chapter. And seeing Alex thrive today is obviously a huge positive. It’s good to go through it. »