Prison Moms: The Reunion

Prison Moms: The Reunion

Dr. Phil greets Jasmine and asks if she's nervous about talking to her mother.

 

"I don't know what to say to her," Jasmine says.

 

"Well, I think you should tell her the truth," Dr. Phil advises.

 

"I'll try, but you know I can't," she tells him.


"Well, I'll help you, OK?" Dr. Phil assures her. "You want me to help you?"

"Yeah, please," she says. Dr. Phil puts an arm around her and gives her a comforting squeeze.

"OK, come on," he says. "We can do this together. Let's do it. You're about to see her. Are you OK with that?"

Before they can proceed, Jasmine stops and puts a hand over her mouth, fighting back tears.

"Can you do this?" Dr. Phil asks. "We do it together, OK?" He waits for Jasmine to show him she's ready before saying, "Let's go," and walking her into the room.


Upon seeing each other, the mother and daughter embrace. Jasmine cries openly, her face stretched into a grimace. Angela puts her hands on Jasmine's face and kisses her tearfully. They hug long and hard.

"You're so pretty," Angela tells her daughter.

 

The two haven't seen each other since 2004. "How does she look to you?" Dr. Phil asks Angela.

"She looks like a little lady," she says drinking her daughter in. "I'm astonished. She's beautiful."


"She's been really nervous about seeing you," Dr. Phil reveals. "She's been feeling a lot of different things, haven't you?" he asks, turning to Jasmine.

"Yeah," Jasmine confirms.

"Tell your mother what you've been feeling. You've missed her." Though Jasmine agrees, she won't lay eyes on her mother's face. "Tell her how you've missed her," Dr. Phil prompts. "Just look at her. You've got to look at her."

Instead, tears well in Jasmine's eyes.

 

"Oh, don't cry," says Angela.

"Why is it so hard to look at her?" asks Dr. Phil.

"I don't know," she says through her tears. "Because of everything that's happened. I thought I could."

"She's afraid to tell you because she doesn't want to hurt your feelings," Dr. Phil ventures on Jasmine's behalf. "And you know what I told her? You spent eight months in prison and you didn't get it. You went out and you did it again. And this time you say you're getting it. You're in here long enough you figured out, 'This wasn't right. I was selfish. I was stupid. I shouldn't have done this, and I don't want to do it.' And I'm telling your daughter, here, you need every wake-up call you can get, including hearing her tell you what it's done to her for you to be in here. Because she doesn't want to hurt your feelings. I, on the other hand, don't care whether your feelings are hurt or not because I know you want to do better."

"I do," says Angela.

"You have been mad at your mom, haven't you?" Dr. Phil asks Jasmine. "Tell her that."

"No," she says, continuing to avert her eyes. "I don't care."

"But you do care," Dr. Phil argues. "You do care."

"Jasmine, I want to hear it," Angela pleads. "You have every right to feel those things. And I would love for you to yell at me and to tell me that you're mad at me. Look at me. I know you're mad at me because you won't even look at me."

"Is it too late for her to be there for you?" asks Dr. Phil.

"What can she do?" says Jasmine.

Dr. Phil asks her, "What do you want for those little kids?"

"For her to be there for them," she replies.

"Do you ever want to see her again after today?" Dr. Phil probes.

"I don't know," Jasmine says. "I didn't want to come today because it's too stressful on me, and I don't want to think about it or anything."

Dr. Phil asks Angela for her thoughts. "I think that I've messed up a lot, and I have a lot to account for. And seeing Jasmine and the way she's acting, she has every right to feel this way, but I don't want her to feel that I don't love her and want to be there for her just as much. I was wrong. I was wrong."

Jasmine doesn't believe her mother and Dr. Phil wants to know why.

"Because she did it twice, and she can't do anything else for me," says Jasmine. "Nobody can. I'm going to be on my own soon and doing it for myself, so all she has to do is make sure she does for the rest of the kids."

Dr. Phil asks, "Do you think you'll ever find it in your heart to forgive her?"

"Yeah," she says, "because I came today. I guess I already forgave her, but I won't forget anything, and it just upsets me."

Angela reunites with two more of her children. Treyshawn is the first to enter, followed by Omani. They greet each other with smiles, hugs and expressions of surprise at the changes in each other's appearance.

"So how does your mom look to you?" Dr. Phil asks Treyshawn.

"Different," says the boy. "She cut her hair."

"So, Mom, how do they look?" Dr. Phil asks Angela.

"Oh, beautiful," she replies, running her eyes over Omani's petite frame. "A little skinny, but beautiful."

"Are they worth re-thinking things?" asks Dr. Phil.

"Yes, they are," she says

"Your daughter's sitting there behind you saying she doesn't believe a word you're saying," Dr. Phil tells her. "You've done it before; you'll do it again. Are you going to prove her wrong?"

"I'm going to prove her wrong," Angela says. "That's all I can do. I can't just tell her; I have to show her. I have to show her. She means the world to me, and for me to see her reacting like that is killing me. I would lay down my life for my kids."

Next, Dr. Phil invites Brianna, Arriana and Mikayla into the room. Angela embraces her daughters.

"It's nice to see everybody together," says Brianna. "We haven't been together in a long time."

"How do you feel about seeing your brothers and sisters all together?"

"I'm happy," Brianna says. "It's just wonderful."

Dr. Phil tells Angela to look at her children to her left and to her right. "Is this enough reason to stand up and do the right thing?"

"Yes, it is," she says.

"You're going to get another chance. The question is, what are you going to do with it?" he asks. Gesturing toward Jasmine and Brianna, he adds, "Those two behind you have been doing a whole lot of your job."

"Yes, they have," Angela agrees.

Dr. Phil says, "Instead of getting to be children, instead of getting to be teenagers. It's time for you to get ready to give some back."

"That's exactly what I plan to do," says Angela. "Exactly."

Dr. Phil steps out and allows the family to spend long-awaited quality time together.


Dr. Phil ends with these final thoughts.

 

"Well, the last chapter of this story clearly hasn't been written. She gets out next year. Jasmine, she's not buying the rah, rah talk. She's saying, 'You need to show me. You had one chance; you blew it. You had a second chance; you blew it. And I'm sorry,' she says, 'I'm just not going to open my heart to you again.' I'm not sure I blame her. We're going to arrange professional help for her and for any of these other children who need it as we go forward. We're going to follow this story and see what happens when a mom comes out from behind bars."