Tense and Emotional Meeting

Alex is facing custody battles with the fathers of her children. Her mother, Erin, has said that she will testify against Alex during the hearings. Alex shares her feelings about her mother's plans. "I feel like she's not worth the words that I have," she says. "What kind of parent can turn their back on her child?"

"That would be why I'm doing what I'm doing, because what kind of parent can walk away from their child?" Erin asks Alex.

Dr. Phil clarifies that Erin is referring to Alex walking away from Nathan and Leilah. "You believe she is an unfit mother?" he asks.

"At this point, yes, I do," Erin says. "I believe she's not plugged in. I believe Tony is more important to her. She's shown that because she has chosen to keep him in her life, rather than say, ‘Let's just date until we get this whole thing situated, so that I can have my son.'"

Alex says she didn't choose Anthony over Nathan. "I can't make it financially alone, and I don't care what anybody says about him," she says. "He is my rock, and he stands by me no matter what."

 

[AD]Erin admits that she doesn't like Anthony. She says he's an excessive smoker, even in front of the kids, he's been in prison, he didn't graduate high school, and he wears his pants hanging low.

"That's being ignorant," Alex snaps.

 

Erin tells Dr. Phil that she and Marty have offered that Alex move back home and they've even offered to support her. "We've been trying to get her to be on her own, not with Tony or anybody," she says.

"If they would set you up in an apartment close by, so you could have Nathan and Leilah, you wouldn't do that?" Dr. Phil asks Alex.

 

"No. I don't want to live close to her," she says. "I don't want her to be able to drop by every day." 

Dr. Phil tells Alex that the evaluators in her child custody cases will be able to find out much more information about her than she ever imagined. Even if she presents herself well in court, her actions on a daily basis will be brought to the forefront, so she must be honest with him. "You have no idea how far these people are going to look to make the determination to give these kids the best chance they've got," he says.

 

Alex says she's not taking any type of drugs or intoxicants, but Erin doesn't believe her daughter. "I believe that Alexandra and Tony party. I believe that she's still taking hydrocodone, and I don't know what else she's taking," she says. "The drugs that they could be involved in leave your system very quickly. They know that. They know how to try and cheat the system." She adds that she and Marty have talked with Alex, and she doesn't remember the conversation, and she has called Alex at 9:30 in the morning, but she and Leilah are not awake.

Alex offers a confused expression.

 

[AD]Dr. Phil says to Erin, "If you were to go to court tomorrow, you would tell the court, in your opinion, she's an unfit mother, and that Nathan should not be in her custody but in his father's."

She nods. "And the reality of it is that it will continue on the way that it is now, because we all very strongly believe that Nathan deserves the consistency, and the love and the care that he's had," she says. "I know that his mother is completely capable of giving that to him and that he loves her and misses her very much. But I'm not going to see him toted around from here to there, doing whatever it is they do."

Alex rolls her eyes and shakes her head.

"Nathan told me, after you guys watched him for a weekend, that he didn't like Tony because Tony was rude to you, Alexandra," Erin says to her daughter.

Alex gives a perplexed look and says that Nathan has made other statements in the past that aren't exactly correct.

 

Dr. Phil asks Alex if she and Anthony fight in front of Nathan, and she says they don't and they make a conscious effort not to. "Tony and I got into a disagreement about something and we took a couple hours apart, and I was upset," she says.

"Did he call you names?" Dr. Phil asks.

"No," Alex says.

"When he gets mad, how does he show it?" Dr. Phil asks.

"He'll usually leave for a couple of hours and then call me, and we work things out," she says. When she's angry, she says she waits until Leilah's asleep to discuss it with Anthony.

 

Alex recently found a phone number on Anthony's phone, and when she questioned him about it, he became angry. "I'm questioning his faithfulness, and that hurt his feelings," she explains. "He got upset about it, but he didn't call me names or anything like that."

[AD]Dr. Phil asks Alex what her dad, Marty, thinks of Anthony.

"I don't know. My dad doesn't ever talk about him," she says.

"He was really angry when [Anthony] peeled out of our driveway," Erin says.

"Because my dad said that he hated my hair, and Tony hates it when they make me cry," Alex explains.

Erin shares her biggest concerns for Alex, and a heated conversation ensues.

Dr. Phil addresses Alex and Erin. "If you go into court with you two on opposite sides of the issue," he says, "you two are dead in the water. In terms of what a custody determination would be, it will be based on what it is at the time, not what was in the past. So however bad it may have been or is, we can fix that." He tells Alex that he wants her to be with her children, because that's in their best interest. "You've got a lot of years left, and doing a lot of things right, now, is going to make everybody's life a whole lot better in the future," he says. He assures Alex that when he meets Anthony, he will keep an open mind.

[AD]Dr. Phil turns to Erin and says, "If you think there are problems with Alexandra, and she addresses those problems and cleans them up, you'll fight to the death for her to keep her children."

"Absolutely, 100 percent," she says.

"The only way she'll do that is if I move home and break up with Tony. She's already told me that," Alex says. "That's the only way she will fight for my behalf."

Mother and daughter disagree. Erin tells Alexandra that the door is always open for her to move home.