Dr. Phil talks to a mother who fears her 16-year-old son may be headed for jail.
Dr. Phil walks backstage with Jennifer to meet her son in the green room. Dr. Phil and Jennifer agree that if Tim refuses to go willingly, a licensed transport agent will escort him to the SUWS program.
Addressing Tim, Dr. Phil says, “Tell me how you feel about being here?”
“It’s kind of hard to believe I’m actually here,” Tim replies. “I’ve always had a thing about putting my problems out on the table in front of people, so it’s kind of hard to take that I have to tell all my problems in front of so many people, the entire world.”
Dr. Phil assures Tim that he is taking precautions to protect his identity. “It’s one of the reasons that I’m talking to you back here instead of out there in front of an audience, because I don’t want you to be distracted by what’s happening,” he says.
Dr. Phil asks, “Do you agree that you’ve had a history of stealing, a history of violence, a history of drugs and alcohol, that’s brought you into conflict with your mother, that’s brought you into conflict with the school and now it’s brought you into conflict with the authorities and the court system? You understand that you can wind up going to jail, prison for an extended period of time?”
“Yes, I do.”
When he asks how Tim feels about that prospect, he replies, “I’m terrified. It’s something that I am not looking forward to.”
“What scares you about it?”
“Just the fact that I’m actually going to prison. To jail.”
Jennifer chimes in, “We don’t know that.”
Looking at her in disbelief, Dr. Phil says, “Have you rewritten the code? Is there something you don’t understand about a guilty plea to what we’re talking about here?”
“I don’t think all of this is your fault. I think you have been subjected to some things in this life and this world that you didn’t ask for, you didn’t deserve, and you don’t know what to do with … I cannot tell you how sorry I am for what you have been through. I know that when you go through a divorce and your family gets pulled apart at a very young age, that’s a terrible thing to go through.”
Pointing out that Tim also suffered abuse as a child, he says, “You shouldn’t have been subjected to that and that changes who you are, Tim. He isn’t a man enough person to look you in the eye and say he’s sorry. But let me say it for every adult in this world and let me say it for your mother. I’m sorry that that happened to you. If there’s something that I can do to change that, and turn back the hands of time, I would do it … I am going to fight until the last breath in me to keep you out of jail … I want you to become a star in your life. I want you to become the hero in your life. And I don’t want to send you back and send you to jail. I want to send you somewhere else.”
He tells Tim that attending SUWS will give him a new lease on life. “It’s a very therapeutic program. It’s designed to help you get off of drugs, get off of alcohol and clear your head and start thinking right about who you are and what you deserve in this life.”
Dr. Phil explains that Tim’s lawyer can get his court date extended, and the judge will look favorably on Tim taking action to turn his life around.
“I’ve always thought about rehab and I’ve always thought negatively about it, never wanted to go,” Tim admits. “I don’t know if I should go.”
“Forget about everything else and listen to me. I believe in you. I believe in who you are,” Dr. Phil says. “It is not too late for you to turn this around and be a hero in your own life. Your mother needs help too. And I’m going to get that for her … I don’t want to see you go to jail. I want to give you a chance to make your life work. And I’m asking you to do this with me. I’m asking you to look me in the eye and say, ‘You know? Dr. Phil, I just met you but I’m going to do what you’re asking me to do.’ That’s what I’m asking you to commit to right now.”
“OK. I will go. I believe that it will help,” Tim says.
Dr. Phil shakes hands with Tim. “I’m proud of you and this is the beginning.”