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Topic : 08/23 Kids Ask Dr. Phil

Number of Replies: 7
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Friday, August 19, 2005, 03:13:24 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1

(Original airdate 05/30/05)  It's the kids' chance to get their questions answered! Meet 17-year-old Ashton, who refuses to do chores around the house unless his parents "show him the money." Should his mom and dad be willing to negotiate? Next, gymnastics champion Mary Lou Retton has advice for helping kids discover their true passion. Plus, the Dr. Phil Foundation and the Children's Defense Fund are joining forces to help kids who are "beating the odds." See the surprises for one teen who's triumphed over drug and alcohol abuse at home. Share your thoughts, join the discussion.

 

Find out what happened on the show.

 

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August 23, 2005, 8:32 am CDT

To Melissa

Melissa - After watching Dr. Phil today, I really empathized with what you are going through!  I am also a product of 2 alcoholic parents who also happened to be physically abusive.  Unlike you, however, I allowed my low self esteem to control the choices I made as an adolescent, and I got in with the wrong crowd at school.   My grades plummeted in middle school and I began hanging around with the "hoods" (what would be considered "goths" by today's standards).  I got pregnant at 16 (gave the baby up for adoption), then again at 17 (kept the baby and married the abusive father).  I had 2 children from this marriage.  After 11 years of hell, I divorced this man only to marry another abusive man.   

  

I could go on and on about all the terrible mistakes that I made, but I really want you to know about my life today.   I put myself through college on scholarships (3.95 GPA) as I was raising my children .  I now have a graduate degree and have been a teacher for 13 years.  I teach middle school math, and am able to connect (because of my own past) in a powerful way with the students who have incredibly disfunctional and heartbreaking homelives.  I am married now to a wonderfully sweet and supportive man and we have a lovely home in the country.   In other words, you really can free yourself from a horrible past and become and do anything that you desire!  

   

I just want you to know how proud of you I am, and how deeply your story touched me!  I know that you are going to make a big difference in the lives of many because of your adversities.  Your past has already given you strength and determination, compassion, and leadership qualities that are already inspiring others, and will no doubt bless and inspire the lives of the many people whom you will encounter throughout your life.  Very best wishes to you, and God bless!  

   

Linda  

   

   

 
August 23, 2005, 12:42 pm CDT

Stepping back as a parent

I knew exactly what my oldest son would do with his life. He was identified gifted in maths and sciences and was an exceptional student so of course, we would have a Dr. in the family.   

    

Not long before he turned 16, he began to seek out venues to perform standup comedy.   

A phase   

My husband and I let him know that we're not the kind of parents who drive their kids an hour each way to perform. We know parents who pushed their kids into performing in commercials and found it to be a negative thing for the kids who were involved.    

    

My son got a job and worked to get enough money to pay the $40 bus trip to the nearby major city so he could get on stage for 5 minutes for free. It was difficult but he never wavered. Each trip helped him add a few seconds to his act. He met people with the same passions as he has and he found more clubs to perform in. He also started an improv comedy group at his school and performed in school plays. His marks began to suffer slightly as his time and energy were consumed by writing comedy and living comedy. We were concerned but we recognized that this was something he was more than willing to work for.    

    

He just turned 18 and was school president and finished high school with reasonably good marks, though not quite the "gifted" level we had come to expect but he is happy, well rounded, passionate, loving and FUNNY.    

    

He was accepted to a college to a 2 year Comedy and Comedy writing course which was begun by a number of famous comics and people in the industry. He starts school at the end of this week and his summer has been a blur of working and writing.    

    

I know we could have dissuaded him from this path.    

We could have used more force and influence to have him attend a "more realistic" course of studies and, because he's an incredibly good kid, I'm sure he'd have followed our advice.   

    

I'm very happy we were able to step back from our dreams for our child in time to see him begin to work towards and fulfill his dreams. Someone who works as hard as he does will succeed in whatever he chooses to do.    

    

He's chosen a very hard path but he has no illusions of fame or fortune. His dreams revolve around adding a few more minutes to his set when he gets on stage and filling yet another journal with bits. Most of his favourite comedians are people I had never heard of.    

  

We couldn't be prouder of him! 

 
August 23, 2005, 1:10 pm CDT

Femme Football

Dr Phil!  What were you thinking?  Perhaps you were thinking about the next interview instead of this one?  Tell me that you had more to say off the air to this family!      

     

All you said was that the boys are going to get bigger and scarier and maybe her mother is right about her not playing...?  When you said that, I heard "Go play with dolls and bake me a pie, little girl."    

     

I am a female in a highly male dominated sport.  (I fight in the Society for Creative Anachronism).  To give you an idea, we re-create the middle ages much as a renaissance festival does.  We have a few armor regulations (head, neck, elbows, knees...) but we fight with heavy rattan swords (think baseball bats) and hit as hard as we can.   When I started I heard the same exact things you told this girl and I went for it anyway. I endured insults, slurs, even was refused acknowledgement that I was present.   I've had no more or less injuries than ANY OTHER fighter!   (As a matter of fact, I met my husband in a tournament where he accidentally broke my hand.)   

     

Now, there are more of us and we are seen, not as women, but as fighters.    

     

I say that if football is her passion (just as heavy list tournaments are mine), the encourage it!  If the mother is worried about her getting injured, then pad her better.    Otherwise, she will find a way to play without consent.  

   

I don't normally talk about my hobby (because it is so irregular and people make assumptions about me or my friends and family), but in this case, I had to speak.  

   

You passion is whatever it is that makes you wake up in the morning year after year and leap out of bed with excitement for the coming day.  I've found mine.  Let her have hers.  

 
August 23, 2005, 2:17 pm CDT

Don't Ever Quit!

Melissa,  

My name is also Melissa.  I grew up in east Texas and really related to your story.  I grew up with two older brothers.  Our father went to prison when I was in the 6th grade and my mom had a crack addiction.  I was also very athletic and was captain of my volleyball, basketball, and softball teams.  I also had a very high GPA and graduated in the top 10% of my class.  I am now a senior at Texas A&M University majoring in sports management with a business minor.  But, I am buried over $30,000 in school loans that I have taken out to put myself through college.  I am now 24 and am married with one child and still trying to finish my degree.  It has been extremely tough and yes there have been times I have been so stressed I cry for hours about being given the life I've had to grow up with, but I always told myself that if I just continue I can change my life and make sure that my daughter doesn't have to go through what I (we) have.  Yes, it will be tough, but you can do it.  I started my own candle business and have used that as a job to help me pay for college, through it all I have still been able to maintain a 3.5 GPA.  So, I guess my message to you is to take what you have been given, and excel.  Internships are so important in the sport management field, so make it worthwhile - it will do great things for you.  No matter your past, you can change your future!  Persevere and don't ever give up!  

I will keep you in my prayers,  

Melissa  

 
August 24, 2005, 1:39 pm CDT

08/23 Kids Ask Dr. Phil

Quote From: packardli

Melissa - After watching Dr. Phil today, I really empathized with what you are going through!  I am also a product of 2 alcoholic parents who also happened to be physically abusive.  Unlike you, however, I allowed my low self esteem to control the choices I made as an adolescent, and I got in with the wrong crowd at school.   My grades plummeted in middle school and I began hanging around with the "hoods" (what would be considered "goths" by today's standards).  I got pregnant at 16 (gave the baby up for adoption), then again at 17 (kept the baby and married the abusive father).  I had 2 children from this marriage.  After 11 years of hell, I divorced this man only to marry another abusive man.   

  

I could go on and on about all the terrible mistakes that I made, but I really want you to know about my life today.   I put myself through college on scholarships (3.95 GPA) as I was raising my children .  I now have a graduate degree and have been a teacher for 13 years.  I teach middle school math, and am able to connect (because of my own past) in a powerful way with the students who have incredibly disfunctional and heartbreaking homelives.  I am married now to a wonderfully sweet and supportive man and we have a lovely home in the country.   In other words, you really can free yourself from a horrible past and become and do anything that you desire!  

   

I just want you to know how proud of you I am, and how deeply your story touched me!  I know that you are going to make a big difference in the lives of many because of your adversities.  Your past has already given you strength and determination, compassion, and leadership qualities that are already inspiring others, and will no doubt bless and inspire the lives of the many people whom you will encounter throughout your life.  Very best wishes to you, and God bless!  

   

Linda  

   

   

I agree so much with this!  You CAN do it, you already have done it.  Somehow, you managed to rise above your immediate family and its problems.  Yes, it is hard to do, especially compared to kids whose parents pay for anything they want, and who go to college to have parties, another thing their parents pay for.  But you already know what they have yet to learn.  Food and housing do not fall from the sky, and if they want a furnished apartment,  for example, they will have to (gasp!) get a job and pay for it. 

  

Keep facing forward and keep your goals in mind. 

 
September 3, 2005, 1:55 am CDT

Melissa

I so empathize with Melissa. I, too, am a product of an alcoholic parent (my father). I hid this from all of my friends. I am a "witty" person and used my "wittiness" to hide the pain and embarrassment I felt. I envied the "normal" lives of my friends and vowed to not end up like my father. I never, ever drank alcohol, even just to try it, for fear that by some hereditary gene, I would end up like him. He terrorized our family and the scars run deep for my mother and my siblings, as well as myself. We would have to leave in the middle of the night or be taken out of school whenever we received a "tip" that he was on his way home and that he was drunk. We sometimes did not receive a "tip" and it would be a total, terrifying surprise, one we would not know if we were going to live through. My dad was an avid hunter and gun collector. We feared for our lives constantly. Like I said, I vowed not to walk in his footsteps. I did end up married at a young age and had two children when I was very young. However, I went to school and became a Registered Nurse. I never thought that I could accomplish such a feat. I always thought that I did not have what it took or the brains to become an R.N. I was, and am, a very stubborn and determined individual and realized that I did get this trait from my father, but I always wanted to prove to others that knew him (and the whole community did, much to my surprise) that I wanted no part of being like him in any way, shape or form. I just want to tell you that what you make of your life is your choice. We are only a victim of our circumstances if we "let" ourselves be. We all have the choice to rise above our circumstances and not follow in the footsteps of those that hurt us and betrayed us, whether they did it intentionally or unintentionally. The scars from the wounds will always remain but you can use your past to always drive you to be a better person and use that which hurt you to possible help someone else. I would love to meet you and cheer you on, even if just to email you and let you know that others know how you have suffered but we moved on and in doing so, hopefully have broken that cycle of alcoholism in our branch of our family tree. If you would like to email me, I'm sure the Dr. Phil show would give you my email address. Best of luck to you in your endeavors and your life. You will make it! Just know that others believe in you and are cheering you on.
 
January 17, 2006, 9:57 am CST

melissa

the episode about children asking questions to dr Phil was today (17th of january) on dutch television, about 7 months later than on USA television. So that's the reason for this late reaction. I was impressed by this show and this girl. Great how she manage her life and great how the people of the show reacted on her. So different than over here in the Nederlands. Here we are always crying out and feeling sorry for the weak. What I like about the dr Phil show is to tell people that they have their own responsabality. Like the girl on this show, Melissa. I am a girl like her (only 20 years older), my father is not an alcohol abuse. I grew up with mother who suffers from with a psychiatric disease: borderline syndrom. This has a great impact on my life. A very great impact. My mother drunk to much from to time to time, used all kinds of medication to keep her happy and calm (didn't work) and suffered from an eatingdisorder (still does). The climax was a suicide attempt whet I was 19. Because of her disease I toke care of the domestics affaris at home (cooking laundry cleaning shopping etc etc etc) at a very young age (since as was 12). I was the rock to lean on for my sister and parents. And of course doing the best I can in school. In stead of being proud of my self I always felt stupid, not good enough and had very low selfestame. Years of therapy and working on myself have changed this of course and everything goning quiet well now, but still a strugle with my childhood and the relationship with my parent is difficult and complex because of everything what happened. I consider my sister as my only familymember that I have left. The great thing about this show and the really touched my was when dr Phil told Melissa that she shoud proud about her self, about what she did, how she surfived etc. That sencentce proud about yourself. She should be proud about herself, and I should be proud about myself too. And all the other thing other people said from the dr Philfoudation. Great for her en great for me. I really thouched me. Thank you.And just on other thing I am sure this is not written in perfect english, sorry for the mistakes in this messsage, but I am duthc speaking and english is only a secont language for me. So I am not stupid only ducth.
 
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