Following reports that Leah Messer lost primary custody of her twins, Ali and Aleeah, Dr. Drew Pinsky, who moderates the Teen Mom 2 reunion specials, spoke out about the West Virginia native. 

Admitting he could not confirm the reports, the addiction specialist, 57, spoke about Messer in a backstage interview on The Rachael Ray Show

“She is a dedicated mother,” he said. “If you saw the last reunion show, which is the last time I had contact with her, I believed she was making some progress.”

Though the reunion special, which was taped in July and aired earlier this month, featured a tense confrontation between Messer and her ex-husband Corey Simms and his wife, Miranda, Dr. Drew didn’t think that was cause for concern.  

“People around her were starting to really come down on her,” he noted. “When that starts to happen, that’s a real sign that the identified patient — whatever her condition is, mental health issue — is getting better. When somebody is aware enough that the people who have been so worried and frustrated around them can actually hear them that’s when they come down on them. So I told Leah that I thought that was a good sign and she should learn to tolerate it.”

The custody battle between Messer and Simms, which has been closely documented on Teen Mom 2, was ugly throughout Season 6. Simms accused his ex-wife of having a pill addiction and endangering their daughters. (Messer is also mom to daughter Addie with her ex-husband Jeremy Calvert.)

Messer has never admitted to a drug addiction and passed a court-ordered drug test on the show. In June she went to a rehabilitation facility for 30 days for treatment for depression. On the reunion special, Dr. Drew also alluded to the fact that Messer’s mental illness had led to a previously undisclosed hospitalization. 

“I was expecting progress,” Dr. Drew said on Rachael Ray. “I certainly wish her the best. She is working very hard. It’s been a terribly painful and stressful time for her.” 

Neither Messer nor Simms have confirmed the reports about the new custody arrangement. 

Want stories like these delivered straight to your inbox? Sign up now for the Us Weekly newsletter!