"My Best Friend is Trying to Steal My Child"

September 2, 2013
Crystal and Megan were best friends who are now in the middle of a custody battle over Crystal’s 8-year-old daughter, Allanah. Who does Dr. Phil think should have custody? Plus, get an update on former guest Steve, who claimed his girlfriend robbed him blind!







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A Custody Standoff

Crystal says her former best friend, Megan, is so obsessed with her 8-year-old daughter, Allanah, that she claimed Crystal to be an unfit mother and secretly petitioned the court for joint custody and physical placement — and won. How could this have happened? Crystal admits CPS has been called on her 20 times, but says all of the claims were dropped — and she insists that she’s a good mother. Megan says Crystal has a history of instability and often puts her own needs ahead of Allanah’s. She says she considers Allanah her family and feels the little girl is better off with her.

Learn how Megan was awarded joint custody and physical placement of her friend’s child.

Crystal says she saw some warning signs in Megan — every time she mentioned moving to Texas with her husband, she says Megan would get upset and threaten to split her family apart. She says Megan’s behavior scared her, so she planned her move in secret. “Megan called CPS on me, saying my daughter was exposed to domestic violence, and CPS came to my home and found absolutely nothing. Megan was lying and trying to gain control of the situation and have Allanah in her life. This woman is no relation to my daughter, and I want her the hell out of my life.”

Rather than move to Texas with her husband, Crystal stayed behind to fight to regain custody of her daughter. After two months, she was awarded temporary sole custody — but says there’s another court date approaching, and she worries that Megan won’t stop fighting for Allanah.

Is Megan trying to brainwash Allanah against Crystal?

Dr. Phil questions Crystal’s history of placing her daughter in the care of others.

Dr. Phil goes over Crystal’s history as a mother. She says her oldest child is in the custody of the child's father. She also has a 1- and 2-year-old. She admits that she doesn’t currently have a job or a car, but she says she has a house, which she pays for with support from her husband and death benefits from Allanah’s father’s passing.

Why won’t Megan support and help Crystal, instead of fighting her for custody? “I completely support her in having a relationship with her child. I’m not trying to take that away from her.”

Crystal says she thinks it may be beneficial to not have Megan in her daughter’s life. “It may hurt Allanah at first, but she’ll get over it,” she says.
 
Dr. Phil asks Megan, “You had offered to her to drop this custody fight if she would just agree to permanent visitation?”

“Yes,” Megan says.
 
“So, if she’s willing to give her to me, how unfit am I?” Crystal asks Dr. Phil.

“I never said I was willing to just give her to you,” Megan says. “I want you to stabilize — ”

“You want me to stabilize where you want me to live, not where I want to be in my life, where you want me,” she argues.

“You have to prove that you’re not going to put these children in danger,” Megan says.

“She doesn’t have to prove anything to you; this is between her and the state,” Dr. Phil tells Megan. “You don’t get a vote in this.”

Dr. Phil explains what he thinks needs to happen for Allanah.

Although all her belongings are in Texas, Crystal says she’s going to remain in New York to continue fighting for custody of her daughter. Dr. Phil offers Crystal resources to get her belongings back.

Crystal breaks down in tears and thanks Dr. Phil.

“I want you to have some help and some guidance in preparing your home and your life to be ready for these children.” Dr. Phil offers her professional help to empower her as a woman and mother and help her create a healthy and secure family environment for her children.


An Enabler No More?

When Steve last spoke with Dr. Phil, he claimed his girlfriend robbed him blind to the tune of nearly a half million dollars — yet they were still together! Find out what happened after the show!

Did Steve kick his girlfriend to the curb?

Steve says he hasn’t gotten his money back yet, but plans to pursue it.
 
Dr. Phil explains the sure-fire way to keep yourself safe from backstabbers and others who want to exploit you:

1.    Do not give anyone the benefit of the doubt.
2.    Don’t ignore that funny feeling you have about someone.