Sarah, 20, and PJ, 21, claim that for the past two years, their mother, Kim, has chosen alcohol and pills over them and their two younger siblings. They say time is running out for her to get her act together — because their father, Pete, is headed to prison for mail fraud, and they’re afraid their family will fall apart while he’s away. Kim says she is only an occasional drinker and insists she is not using pills — but what will a drug test reveal? And, how does she explain two DUI crashes in recent years, including one that Pete claims she tried to cover up?
Plus, Pete admits he was struggling to make ends meet when he came up with a plan to embezzle hundreds of thousands of dollars. Why does he say he blames Kim for his current predicament?
With the clock ticking, the family confronts Kim in an emotional intervention on Dr. Phil’s stage. Will she agree to get help and become the mother her children say they need now, more than ever?
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A Ticking Clock?
“My dad is going to prison, and I’m terrified,” Sarah says. “I’m scared about what we’re going to do without him. My mother is a drunk. She drinks every day.” Sarah says her mother gets angry and violent when she’s drunk and often drives inebriated.
“I would say my mom gave up. I feel helpless. If things don’t change, my mom is going to end up killing herself by her drunken driving or abandon my younger siblings,” she says. “My biggest fear when my dad goes to prison is that me and my younger siblings are going to have to fend for ourselves.”
Sarah’s brother, PJ, says their mother, Kim, has spiraled out of control. “I won’t have anything to do with mom if she doesn’t change,” he says.
Kim vehemently denies abusing alcohol and says she only drinks occasionally, and it’s only a symptom of her husband’s impending prison stint for mail fraud. “It started with my marriage ending, and my family falling apart," Kim says. "Then I wrecked two trucks, then Pete got caught with the embezzlement.
“Pete has contributed to our kids treating me like an outcast, lying about me to them," she continues. "Pete has told my kids I drink too much. They’ve accused me of doing pain medication, which I do not do. He told the kids that I blackmailed him to keep on stealing money so that I could do pills, which was a lie. Pete embezzled money for three years, of which I was with him for one. I didn’t see any of the money that he embezzled for the last two years that he did that. Pete thinks I’m responsible for him having affairs, for him embezzling money, and I’m responsible for the bad choices I’ve made. In his eyes, I created this whole entire mess, and I think it’s *.”
Pete claims, “Kim got addicted to drugs, and got progressively worse over the years. We fell behind in our mortgage.” He explains that the embezzlement idea was his, but he claims that he continued the criminal activity because of Kim. “I tried to quit, and she would not have it. Kim tried to blackmail me and tell my boss that I was taking money. She said that I was going to continue to give her the money she needed and if not, she would turn me in.”
Pete says an anonymous tip led to him being caught. He had embezzled $356,000. “I was sentenced to 33 months in federal prison for mail fraud. My biggest concern while I’m in prison is that Kim is a fit mother and is able to drive my kids safely and not wreck and kill them or kill somebody else.”
How did Pete embezzle money?
Dr. Phil urges Kim to be honest. “Is your brain so fried right now that you don’t get what’s happening here?”
PJ pleads with his mom to realize she needs help. “I miss the mom who raised me.” Will it make an impact?
Tune in to see Dr. Phil’s offer of help for Kim — and if she accepts.