Exhibitionists: Laura

Exhibitionists: Laura

"My mom is the loudest person in the country. Anywhere we go, she draws all the attention toward herself," says Jennifer, 23. "My mother will walk up to a stranger and just tell them, ‘Oh, I think I know you. Oh, I think I met you at school,' when they're, like, 15 years younger than she."

 

"I would consider my mom an exhibitionist," says Amethyst, 25. "My mom does embarrass me. She's very loud. She's just crazy. In public or in private, it doesn't matter."

 

While walking with her daughters, Laura sings loudly and dances wildly in the street. She also walks up to complete strangers and introduces herself, while her daughters hide their faces in shame. "I don't understand why they get embarrassed, because to me it just brings so much joy and so much fun," Laura says.

 

Laura also has a longing to perform onstage. "In high school, I was in theater and I was a cheerleader. I was one of the loudest cheerleaders. In fact, some of my other cheerleaders told me to be quiet while I was at the games," Laura reminisces. "When I'm performing, it feels like a rush of adrenaline, and it feels like I'm floating on a cloud. Sometimes it just lasts a couple of hours, and then you come down."

 

Jennifer has a theory about her mom's behavior. "My mom is a frustrated actress. She's been doing extra work, acting stuff, for a long time, and she never really got to where she wanted to be," she reveals, adding that she's concerned for her mom's well-being. "My fear about my mom is she's going to be single for the rest of her life, because guys think she's weird."

"Are you weird?" Dr. Phil asks Laura.

"I didn't think so until just now," she says.

"Why do you think you do this?" Dr. Phil asks.

"A lot of times, I'm really depressed inside, so to bring joy to myself," she says. "It's kind of a way for me to draw happiness."

"Does it work?" Dr. Phil probes.

"While you're doing it, it does," she says.

"You get a high from this," Dr. Phil says.

"Yeah," Laura says with a smile.

 

Turning to Laura's daughters, Dr. Phil says,

"This bugs y'all. What embarrasses the two of you about it?"

"We went to an award show, and I couldn't find her anywhere, and there she was talking to Donnie Osmond, and I was worried. I didn't have a ride home," Jennifer says.

Noticing Laura's flush cheeks, Dr. Phil asks, "What is it about Donnie Osmond that gets you all flustered?"



"He's the greatest singer, dancer, actor. He's athletic, and I do love him for the way he loves his wife. I was not a fan who abandoned him when he got married," she says.

"There are no words," Amethyst says, shaking her head.

"You have an unusual name," Dr. Phil says to Amethyst. "How did you get your name?"

"Years ago, at one of [Donnie's] concerts, he wore purple socks, and so amethyst being the color purple, [my mom] thought she was going to marry Donnie in her dream world, and she didn't," she explains. "Coincidence, I was born
in February, and coincidence, my maiden name was Stone, so growing up I was Amethyst Stone. It was all for Donnie Osmond's purple socks."

"So, you named your daughter after Donnie Osmond's socks?" Dr. Phil asks in disbelief.

Laura explains that on January 11, 1975 she chased Donnie down in Disneyland and met him. "My brother told him to give me a kiss, and that night I went home to name our children," she says. "For a girl, the color purple is mauve, scarlet, and then I saw amethyst. It's supposed to be Amethyst Jolene Osmond."

"Sorry," Amethyst says sarcastically to her mom.

"Are y'all just a couple of sticks in the mud, or is she just over the top?" Dr. Phil asks Jennifer and Amethyst.



"She's over the top," Amethyst says.

Jennifer agrees. "I'm weird. All my friends know I'm weird, but there's a time and a place for that," she says.

 

Dr. Phil turns to Laura and says, "You say you know that this embarrasses your daughters, but you do it anyway."

"I just found this out, really," she says.

Dr. Phil doesn't buy it. "You're telling me, in all of these years, you never knew, when they were over hiding behind a car or walking along the wall like they don't know you, that this wasn't bothering them?" he asks.

"Maybe I didn't care at the time or didn't pay attention," she says. "Seeing it for yourself, it is kind of awkward to see."

 

Dr. Phil mentions that Laura performed at Jennifer's birthday party in front of 150 people and asks, "Did it occur to you that this was her birthday and her party, and you were obnoxiously stealing her spotlight, stealing her moment,

stealing her time, to feed your own ego?"

"I didn't realize that until just recently," Laura says, "because you wouldn't want to take that attention away from someone, so that's why I kind of feel it is a good idea to come and find out how to control [it]."

 

"Just tone it down a little," Amethyst says.

"I just figured out another reason why," Laura says, fighting back tears. "I've auditioned all my life at different places, and they've never picked me, and so it's like if you love to perform, you need an audience."

"People do this for different reasons," Dr. Phil says to Laura, explaining that his previous guest, Mark, was an overweight child and picked on by his peers. "You said you used to dance and perform for your father, and he really liked that, and he would really give you reinforcement for it."

"He would always tell his friends, ‘My daughter can dance,' and if people came to the house, I'd get up and dance. My dream was to dance with Elvis Presley in a movie," she says.

"It could be that these little rushes that you're getting are keeping you depressed and lonely, because people tend to kind of shy away from you because not everybody wants to feel conspicuous," Dr. Phil points out. "Maybe what you ought to do is not run from whatever has got you upset and kind of focus on why you're feeling depressed, because this isn't working, right?"

"No," she says.

"It works for a few minutes, and then you come crashing down," Dr. Phil says, "and you're embarrassing your daughters. You get that now, right?"

"Now, I do," she says. "You don't realize until you see for yourself, in a way. You can't really see what you're doing until it's put right before you."