Fatal Attraction: Melvin and Michelle

Good Enough to Die For?

"Melvin is stalking me. It scares me. I never know when Melvin is going to snap," says Michelle of her ex-boyfriend. She and Melvin have had a rocky relationship since they started

dating in 2002. "Melvin is crazy. One time we were arguing, and I was running to get help, and he ripped my pajamas off. Another time, he held a knife to my throat, threatening to kill me. Melvin acts like it's normal behavior." She adds that if she wore skirts or fitted tops when she and Melvin were dating, he would rip them off her. 

 

"I wish that I didn't feel so obsessed with Michelle. I can't get Michelle out of my head," Melvin admits. "I don't think I could handle it if Michelle wasn't in my life." He says he gets very angry when Michelle tries to leave in the middle of a conversation. "She'll tell me that we're done. She doesn't believe what I'm trying to say, so I hold her down to stop her from leaving," he reveals. "I can explode." 

 

Melissa says that Melvin would follow her around, be waiting for her when she got off of work and call her multiple times when she was out. Recently, Michelle was dating someone, and Melvin called continuously when she had her love interest over. "One night when the person I was seeing was over at my house, Melvin had come to my bedroom window and banged on it. It scared both of us. The next day, there was a rose in the mailbox," she shares through tears. "I feel like I'm afraid of my own shadow. I feel like he's always around. He always knows what I'm doing."

 

Melvin says that he can't completely trust Michelle. "She's secretive," he says. "I call her before she goes to work. I call her when she gets off of work, or I call her before I go to work. Sometimes, she doesn't answer. I feel like she's been talking to her exes or a little too much to her friends. I'll call her a couple more times, pick up her phone, look through it, see exactly whom she's been talking to." 

When Michelle was pregnant with their first child, she and Melvin were fighting, and he kicked her in the stomach. He has continued to be violent with her. "I'm afraid of Melvin. He has slapped and punched me. When I was pregnant with our second child, Melvin head-butted me. I was gushing blood. Another time, while the children were there, he bit the top of my head and pulled my hair. Once, when the kids were in the car screaming, Melvin shattered my windshield and punched in
my dashboard," she says. Their daughter has also witnessed Melvin punch holes in the wall and is scared to be around him. "She thinks he is a bad person. She tells him to his face that he is a bad boy."

 

Melvin wants their relationship to work out. "Michelle would tell me that I'm being too pushy, too controlling. I am trying to build our relationship," he says. "My feelings for Michelle are very strong. She's the love of my life. I would like to spend the rest of my life with her." 

 

Michelle admits to leading Melvin on, even though she doesn't want a relationship with him. "We've started having sex again, and I do tell him that I love him," she reveals. "Melvin will never accept that the relationship is over. I'm afraid of what else he might do ... I'm afraid that he will hurt me. I may end up dead."

Melvin joins Dr. Phil via satellite, because he is on probation for a domestic violence felony

against Michelle, and he would be breaking the law if he left his state. Dr. Phil asks Melvin how he feels seeing Michelle in tears.

"It breaks my heart," he says.

"Isn't this exactly what you want?" Dr. Phil asks. "You've got control to the point that she is shaking and dominated by your presence."

 

"No, it's not what I want," he says. 

 

Dr. Phil reads part of the letter Melvin wrote to the show. "‘I love Michelle with all of my heart, and I cannot control the way I act when we begin to fight or argue,'" he says. "You said, ‘I truly don't understand why she is still beside me. I've called her every name in the book, cheated on her in the beginning of our relationship, and there has been much physical abuse.'" He points out that Melvin has been arrested, convicted and in jail a number of times because of the physical abuse he has inflicted on Michelle. He also notes that Michelle has said that Melvin has held her down, tossed her, slapped her, put his hands around her neck, split her eyebrow, given her a black eye, held her at knifepoint, punched her in the mouth, threatened to burn down the house, went to her mother's house with a gun and tried to run her off the road. "You're going to have to tell me how that squares with,

‘I love her with all my heart,'" Dr. Phil says to Melvin.

"It doesn't," he says in recognition, though he denies having shown up with a gun.

 

"Have you sexually assaulted her?"

 

"Yes, I have," Melvin replies.

"What gives you the right to do that to this woman?" Dr. Phil asks. "You've said that you cannot control your temper, and that you fear that this is going to wind up with Michelle's injury or death."

"That is correct," Melvin says. 

"Have you had sex with this man within the last month?" Dr. Phil asks Michelle.

 

"Yes," she says, admitting to having sex with Melvin three times.

"There is not one thing about what Melvin is doing that is OK with me, but I've got a hard time squaring this up," Dr. Phil tells her. "What are you doing?"

After pausing to wipe tears from her eyes, she says, "I do love him, and I wish that we could be together. We both have that connection as far as intimacy goes."

 

"What do you mean? It's good sex?" Dr. Phil asks.

 

"Yeah," she replies.

"Is it good enough to die for?" Dr. Phil asks. "That man is capable of killing you, in my opinion." He points out that because Melvin often doesn't remember his violent outbursts, he h

as blackout rage. "People get dead in blackout rage. You are playing with fire," he tells her. "You are taking the mother of your children, you, and putting her in danger, and that is irresponsible."

Asked if he thinks he should be around Michelle, Melvin says, "At times, I don't believe so."

"Can you predict those times?" Dr. Phil asks.

"No, I can't," he says.

Dr. Phil introduces criminal prosecutor Rhonda Saunders, who established the Stalking and Threat Assessment Team for the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office. He tells her, "To me, this seems

like a really volatile situation, psychologically speaking. What do you guys see from the law enforcement prosecution angle?"

"What I see is something that could wind up with Michelle being dead," she says.

 

Dr. Phil addresses Melvin. "In all honesty, do you trust yourself to be around Michelle?" he asks.

"Lately, yes. A year ago, I would say no," he replies.

"What has happened with you in the last year that causes you to believe that you have gone from a violent, abusive, sexually-as

saulting stalker to a good companion?" Dr. Phil probes.

"I've been working on my attitude. I've been going to counseling," he says.

 

"How are you going to deal with it if she says, ‘I want you out of my life. Do not call me. Do not come by. Do not drive by. Do not track me, monitor me'?" he asks. "'If you want to see the children, they will be dropped off to a neutral place, and you will pick them up through a neutral intermediary.'"

"That would be understandable, and if that's the way she really feels, I will accept it," Melvin says. But he points out that Michelle can't continue to give him mixed signals, like calling him to find out where he is when he's not around.

Dr. Phil asks Michelle, "Are you in a relationship with him?"

 

"I'm not in a relationship with him," she says.

Dr. Phil takes Michelle to task for letting Melvin drive her to the airport before the show. "Are you sending him mixed messages?"

he asks.

"Probably," Michelle admits.

Dr. Phil addresses Melvin. "I want to make it really clear, there's not one thing you're doing that's OK with me," he tells him. "That's unhealthy for you. That's unhealthy for her. It is disastrous for your children. That is not OK."

Dr. Phil turns back to Michelle. "I can't help you here if you're not willing to help yourself," he tells her. "There are a few deal-breakers in a relationship. Physical abuse is one of them. It is a drop-dead deal-breaker." He advises her, "You are not safe with this man, and you should not allow yourself to be around him, unless and until an objective, independent professional tells you that he has made the changes that he needs to make in order for you to be safe."

At the end of the show, Dr. Phil asks Michelle, "Do you realize that you're at risk?"

"Yes," she says. 

"I'm sure there are good sides to who he is, and he may be able to redeem himself and resolve these beliefs and
expectancies of compliance and possession, but until he does that, you've got to find the strength to shut this off," he says. 

 

Michelle agrees.

"You need to give that unambiguous message," Dr. Phil tells her. "You could wind up dead, and it's a miracle you aren't."

Rhonda adds, "Think of your children. What would they do without a mother?" she asks.



"That's the whole point," Dr. Phil reiterates. "You're putting your children's mother at risk." To Melvin he says, "I absolutely wish you the best. I hope you will get some help, and I hope you will get this behind you so you can have a healthy relationship."