Alexandra from the Dr. Phil Family participated in a live chat on DrPhil.com to discuss her pregnancy, parenting and other issues. Below is the text of her conversation.
Alexandra: Hi everyone, I’m here and ready to start chatting. Thanks for all of your questions so far… fire away. Let’s get started.
nikki1846: Hey Alexandra, what was your big announcement that you made today? I was not able to tune in!
Alexandra: That Tony and I are expecting a baby. I’m due in July! He and I are very excited about the baby. It will be his first child. He’s looking forward to being a daddy.
carol7757: How are you dealing with all the stress? Divorce, custody, and now a pregnancy?
Alexandra: The counselor my mom and I are seeing is very helpful, and believe it or not, my family has been very supportive. With the help of Dr. Phil, I’ve gotten some great advice.
Pennysimson: Will your parents help you when this baby is born?
Alexandra: Of course! My parents will be there. They’ve been there for me with the last two children and they’re going to love this baby the same as they do my son and my daughter. I won’t be needing their help financially with this baby. I’ll be doing everything â€” hopefully, the right way!
chayamom: Fast-forward 21 years. You’re staring at your daughter who just announced she’s having her third child from as many men. What do you say to her?
Alexandra: I would say that I love her and that I might not like the choices she makes, but that I’m going to support her no matter what. Because that’s what a family does â€” they support you through the good, bad and ugly, no matter what life throws at you.
carol7757: Are you and Tony getting counseling as a couple to help deal with everything?
Alexandra: That’s a good question. Yes, the counselor that Dr. Phil hooked me and my mom up with has given me great relationship activities and pointers that Tony and I do together almost every single night. He’s very open to working on our relationship and growing as a couple.
With everything that’s going on, Nathan has enough stress to deal with and I don’t think it’s appropriate, at this time, to give him something else to worry about or be concerned for â€” at this time. When I feel the time is right, when I feel it’s a comfortable moment to talk to my children about it, I will tell Nathan in my own way. Nathan was very excited about his sister so â€¦ I think he’ll be excited!
jenicegeracci: Did you plan this pregnancy?
Alexandra: No â€¦ no. I don’t think anyone ever really plans, with the exception of fertility doctorsâ€¦ Life throws unexpected curveballs at you and every couple experiences surprises in their relationship. This was a surprise to us. Tony was told he couldn’t have children when he was younger.
danakscully64: Have you found out the sex of the baby yet?
Alexandra: No. Actually, Tony and I have decided to share that moment with America. So we’ll be video taping our very first sonogram together.
pennysimson: Do you ever fell sad that you never had time to find out who you are and what you really wanted in your life?
Alexandra: Actually, I know exactly who I am. And, I might not have had the same childhood as everyone else, but I know what I want in life and I’m working towards reaching those goals. It might not be the same goals as an average 22-year-old, but life is what you get and life is what you make of it.
jennacmason: Hi Alex, where do you see yourself a year from now? And, what is your biggest fear?
Alexandra: Well, I would say â€¦ hmmm, a year from nowâ€¦ At this point, I have to keep an open mind about what my next year will look like because unfortunately, I’ve made some mistakes, and my fate lies in the hands of a judge. I’m hoping the next year will have me, Tony and the new baby and the kids putting my family together. My biggest fear would be not seeing my children be together, and making sure that this baby is healthy and happy and has the chance to grow up with his or her brother and sister.
ariffle: Do you ever just hang out with your girlfriends? Just shop or go have lunch? You seem like what you need is a break from all the legal crap, men and family junk!
Alexandra: LOL, actually, it’s rare but I do! Being 22, and having a family, you don’t meet many other 22-year-old girls my age that have the same situation, but I do have a couple of girlfriends that I do spend time with and hang out and just be a girl.
medha311: Wasn’t Chris just as loving and nurturing when you first met him and married him as Tony is now? What makes this relationship with Tony different than the other two? Think he’ll be OK forever with raising a family of three-plus kids, two of which aren’t his?
Alexandra: No, Chris was not very loving and nurturing. About a month after I met him, he went to jail for a violent crime against someone else. At that point in my life, I thought I could fix him and unfortunately, things didn’t work out for us. And when someone is emotionally unavailable, it can create problems. Tony has been supportive since day one. He hasn’t strayed or faltered at all. We’ve been together a little over a year. Even through all this mess, me dealing with my kids who aren’t his, he loves them as if they were his own. That’s a lot to ask of any man, to put his whole life on TV and be scrutinized by everyone for me to get my kids back. It really shows me that he cares, and that he’s willing to sacrifice so much and be a part of me and my family.
paulab67: At what point in your life will you stop making mistakes? I don’t mean to be rude. But you are always saying you are 22-years-old and make mistakes.
Alexandra: Does anyone ever quit making mistakes in their life? He who is without sin, cast the first stone.
trpayton: Please describe one or two major ways you have changed as a result of counseling.
Alexandra: I have learned to validate my mom’s fears and concerns. She can feel the way she wants to feel, and I can’t change that. However, I can acknowledge the way she feels and hopefully, by doing that, we can come up with a way to resolve those issues.
Another would be that I’m a good person and I need to love myself in order to be happy and healthy and make a good mom. Talking to the counselor is so helpful. They listen and she gives really great advice. She’s told me that I need to like myself and support myself, and by doing that, I can create that environment with everyone else. Dr. Phil has always been in my corner and it’s nice to have, not only that stable support, but coming from him, as a male support, has been a big factor in my life.
amberleigh00: Will Tony ever participate on the show?
Alexandra: That’s up to Tony! So you’ll have to wait and see. He’s willing to do whatever it takes to make sure I get my kids back.
spencerfamlyof: Do you have any regrets, and if so, what would they be?
Alexandra: I really don’t have any regrets. If I could change things â€¦ I would’ve made a few different choices. Sorry to be so vague, but I just want to leave it at that for now.
paula1234: Are you in college or taking any kind of trade?
Alexandra: After the baby is born, I plan to enroll in a nursing assistant program. I was in college, so I’m about a semester short of my associate’s degree in business.
tracey9021: I think you are living in a fairytale with Tony. Just because he rubs your feet or rubs your back does not make him the PERFECT man, and unfortunately this baby will not keep him around like you want it too.
Alexandra: That’s very kind that you show so much concern, but you don’t know Tony. Is any man perfect? Every man has his faults, but unless you truly know someone, please don’t judge.
marabella8: If you don’t have the money to buy condoms or pills, how are you going to get pre-natal care?
Alexandra: Our state has a great maternity plan. Tony and I go for check ups regularly and our midwife has been really great.
meyersbeverly: R U AVOIDING MY COMMENTS?
Alexandra: There are a lot of questions, and I’m trying to get to as many as I can!
bethdemwills: What do you think is your greatest strength as a parent and what is your greatest weakness?
Alexandra: Being young helps me keep up with my kids, be outgoing and adventurous, and be able to relate to them a little bit more. Especially when they go through the hard teenage years, I’ll be able to relate a little bit more than someone older, because I was there recently! Being young helps me to stay open-minded.
My biggest weakness is probably, I’ll have to ask my mom that!! OK, remembering to keep my expectations in check. And financially, I think everyone is struggling financially right now. Fortunately, I have great family support
delenev: How are you going to feel when Nathan’s father gets married and there is another woman performing the mother duties for him?
Alexandra: I don’t have feelings towards Nathan’s father or Chris. I will be happy for them when they find someone worth taking that big step with. I don’t fear another woman, because I know I’m always going to be Nathan’s mother. I’m Nathan’s mommy. I’m happy and I’m secure in myself and my parenting ability, and I think it’s great if Nathan has another woman to talk to and get advice from. I hope that she and I can form a relationship and become friends.
pennysimson: Can you say, with all your heart, that you’re happy about having another baby?
Alexandra: Yes I am. I am struggling with it, but I wouldn’t â€¦ I wouldn’t change having a baby with Tony. It makes me happy. But I do wish that the baby had waited until after we’d gotten this all resolved.
mom2jays: I am a single parent too. Are you really ready for the hard times? Like colds? And emergency care?
Alexandra: I’ve been doing it since I was 15. Is anyone ever really ready for that? My kids have been ridiculously healthy. They’ve never really been very sick. I’ve been very lucky.
swozney: What advice will you give your children regarding why there are three fathers involved in your family?
Alexandra: For Nathan, it’s the normal for him. He understands that me and his daddy were very young and we’re not together. When the time is right, I’ll explain it to my kids.
payton11: Have you thought about what you will do if Tony leaves you before or after baby?
Alexandra: I really haven’t thought about that. It’s never really been an issue. Even if we end up not being together, I know that he would still be there to support his child and take care of me as long as I needed it. His family loves me, and his mom is great!
driverdave: Has anything Dr. Phil has done for you and your family sunk in??
Alexandra: Everything that Dr. Phil has ever done for my family and for me personallyâ€¦ I have great appreciation for him. I’ll never be able to show the immense gratitude for everything he and his staff have done for me and my family. I hope that, once this is finished, I can strive to show him that I appreciate it and that I’m willing to make the best of it.
I have a lot going on, so when he confronts me about my attitude, sometimes I can’t help but be a little bitter. But I have a lot going on and it’s a lot emotionally. People don’t really realize the emotional toll it takes. It requires a lot to get up there for 30 minutes, but â€¦ I’ve got a lot to be angry about.
What people don’t understand is that I’ve known Dr. Phil for seven, eight years. I respect him. I think people might see me treating him as an uncle — my son’s middle name is Phillip! So I think some people see my being comfortable as being disrespectful, but that’s not the way I mean it.
Alexandra: Thanks to everybody who has continued to show support for me and my family! We’re just glad that, if just one person gets something out of issues, than we’ve accomplished something! Let’s do this again and I’ll get to more questions. Thanks all. Goodnight!