"Yes, I Abandoned My Children, but I'm Not a Bad Mom"
Jamie says his longtime girlfriend, Akealia, was an abusive and irresponsible mom who abandoned him and their five children more than two years ago to start a new life with a man she had known for only a few days — and has seen the kids only twice since. Akealia admits she walked out on her family but denies being abusive and says she thought her children were better off living with Jamie. Why hasn’t she seen her children all this time?
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A Surprise SplitAkealia says she became a mother at a young age and missed most of her childhood. She says after more than 11 years with Jamie, she fell out of love with him and wanted more. “I wanted to move on,” she says.
She insists she didn’t abandon her children, saying, “I do try hard to be in their lives long-distance,” but she claims Jamie is holding their children hostage because he’s “angry, bitter and upset” about her leaving. “I feel like I am still a very good mother,” she says. “I love my children, and I would do anything for them.”
Jamie says Akealia left him and the children out of the blue and moved to another state. “I did not see it coming,” he says. “It was like an atomic bomb went off.” He says Akealia basically never looked back, seeing the children only twice since she left and speaking with them about 10 times — and he hasn’t seen her at all.
Jamie says he understands if Akealia wanted to leave him, “But how can you walk away from your children?” he asks.
A Troubled DaughterJamie has full custody of his children, and both he and Akealia say the behavior of their 12-year-old daughter is out of control to the point where she's a threat to her siblings. Akealia says their daughter is a "daddy's girl" and that Jamie didn’t discipline her enough.
Jamie says Akealia’s alleged abuse and abandonment created their daughter’s troubled behavior. But Akealia’s sister, Josephine, blames Jamie. “This could have been prevented if Jamie was not a bad father and was not abusive toward Akealia,” she says. Jamie denies being a bad father and says that he has screamed at his children when they were misbehaving and slapped them — but never on the face.
“I believe that parent is a very high calling," Dr. Phil tells the group. "It’s both a noun and a verb. It’s something you are, but it’s also something you do.”