Dr. Phil warns Carole about her husband's seemingly endless patience. "Let me tell you, this is guy thing. Bill is pretty laid back, he's pretty patient, but there's something I've learned about quiet people. You can back them into a corner, and they'll kind of back up and back up, and pretty soon, they say, â€˜By God, that's enough.' And do not underestimate this man's resolve," he says. He turns to Bill. "Because I understand that you're very patient about this, and you're trying to be very mature about it and trying to heal the situation, but there is a point where you're going to say, â€˜That is enough.' True?"
"Yeah," Bill agrees.
"And we're skirting real close to it right now, aren't we?"
"We're on the fringes."
[AD]"So, if that's what you want, if you're trying to push him so far that he makes the decision for you so you don't have to own it " Is that your strategy here?" Dr. Phil asks Carole.
"No. No. I've told him, I will move out, and he begs me not to, says, â€˜Please don't.' I mean, I've done everything I can to tell him we'll just have our space, and I'll leave, and we'll see where it goes. He doesn't want that," she says.
"I also said the other night I'd leave, and you said not to," Bill tells his wife.
"Because I don't want you to leave. I want to be the one to go," she says.
When Dr. Phil asks Carole what will happen to the kids if she leaves, she says 15-year-old Jessica and 12-year-old Alyssa will go with her.
"So, let me get this right. Your theory is to just totally fracture the family, and take two with you into an apartment and leave Heather, and Ethan and the baby," Dr. Phil says, about her 18-year-old, the new baby and the father of the baby, who lives with the family.
"Well, eventually Heather and Ethan are moving out on their own anyway," she says.
[AD]"Well, eventually a lot of things are going to happen, but this is now," he says. Dr. Phil turns to the girls. "What do y'all think about her plan to move out and into an apartment?"
"I think it's just going to enable her to do the same things she's been doing, but easier for her now. And Jessie, I think, is going to get away with more," Kristin says. She tells her mother, "You're going to become more like best friends instead of parent/daughter."
"Like we were," Carole says.
"Yeah, like we were, but you still gave me the proper guidance," she says.
Dr. Phil wonders how much the two youngest know about this other man in their mom's life. Jessica,15, says she's met him before at Carole's workplace. Carole says she's only explained to her 12-year-old, Alyssa, that they were going to move into an apartment and that she could visit her dad and sisters any time.
"Did she wonder why?" Dr. Phil asks.
"No, she's pretty much oblivious. She doesn't really know what's going on," Carole says.
Kristin disagrees. "We heard that she went into the room and told Heather, â€˜Mom said she's not having an affair with him. They're just best friends, and they just mess around sometimes.'"
"That's ridiculous," Carole says.
Heather says that is indeed what Alyssa told her.
"This is affecting her because she's seeing bits and pieces," Kristin tells her mother.
Carole admits her youngest probably knows more than she lets on, but she explains that the reason Alyssa has been leaving school early and saying she doesn't feel well is because she's being bullied in gym class, not because of the family troubles.
Dr. Phil asks her, "Do you think it's bad judgment for your 12-year-old to
know as much as she does about this?"
[AD]"Yeah, I don't think she should. Yeah, definitely," she says.
Bill agrees, but says he doesn't think Alyssa has been affected much by the situation. He says she seemed excited about moving to a new apartment with a pool.
Dr. Phil makes it clear that children learn what they live. "A 12-year-old dealing with these concepts and constructs is just not right," he says. He reminds then that there are always consequences to their choices, some which trickle down to the children. "And sometimes you don't know what those impacts are. You've got a 12-year-old who I think is getting caught in the mix here, and I'm very, very concerned about that."