2013 Shows

(Original Air Date: 12/13/12) Kathy, a stay-at-home mom and advocate of the Attachment Parenting philosophy says she still breastfeeds her nearly 4-year-old son -- who calls her breasts “Money” -- and she doesn’t plan on stopping until “he stops asking.” Kathy jokingly calls cribs “cages,” and says both of her children share the bed with her and her husband. Has she taken Attachment Parenting too far? Pediatrician and co-host of The Doctors Dr. Jim Sears weighs in on the parenting theory. Then, self-professed helicopter grandmother JoAnn says there’s nothing she won’t do to check up on her children and grandchildren, including climbing over locked gates to break into her 39-year-old daughter, Angie’s, home. Once inside, JoAnn admits she leaves notes, reminding Angie to clean up around the house, and raids the cabinets in search of alcohol to pour out. Angie says she’s tried to tell her mother to back off. Will JoAnn finally agree to give her some space? Plus, Lavaniel posted a video on Facebook and YouTube of him verbally bashing his then 15-year-old son, Lavaniel Junior, for wearing skinny jeans. After logging more than 200,000 views, the video has stirred controversy: Is Lavaniel a bully or a caring father? Tune in and decide for yourself!

Find out what happened on the show.
Replied By: dblake864 on Dec 15, 2016, 8:25AM - In reply to susielyn
Breasts are for feeding infants, not to be used as pacifiers. Once the child no longer needs the milk for nutrition, they need to find other ways to soothe themselves. Why not hold them and sing to them? Why do they need your breast in their mouth?
Replied By: nzder110 on Jul 10, 2014, 10:15PM
I had no problem with the attachment mum, I think she had a plan, and seemed to be a kind caring good mother.  It is hard enough being a parent to a small child, and trying really hard to do your best and what you think is right, without everyone elses judgement and second guessing.  Having said that I did have a big problem with the Texas mum who knew no boundaries when it came to her adult children's homes and lives.  Clearly this is a tight family who all live on the same big property, but when it comes to mum just going into her adult children's homes uninvited or without a warning, and even throwing alcohol away because she doesn't like it, and leaving rude notes about keeping things clean, I think that just stepped way over the boundaries.  The reason it annoyed me so much is she was being so very very selfish.  Clearly her daughter loved her, but didn't really like her showing up every day at her house and just treating her place as if it were her own.  She needs to realise her kids are well and truly grown up, and she needs to respect their privacy and decisions, and their guests.  She just didn't care what anyone thought, which is just selfish.  Stop thinking about what YOU want Texas Mum, and start being considerate of others!
Replied By: aimeejvvuuren on Jul 3, 2014, 6:31AM
I watch Dr Phil in South Africa and we are 2 years behind the current programming! :(  Anyway, watching this episode, I immediately thought of my sister-in-law. She was breast-fed until she was 5 years old and slept in the same bed with her mom until she was 13 years old! A year after that, her mom allowed her to move in with her 19 yr old boyfriend. WHAT?! My niece's biological father is an abusive drug addict. Needless to say, my sister-in-law has a lot of 'baggage' and apparently also struggles with Bi-polar disorder. As a young adult now (24) she is having to work hard at finding a healthy balance in life. Her mother's attachment parenting did not do her any good.
Replied By: strine on Nov 25, 2013, 3:35AM - In reply to windowmaker
Angie seems to be there for the financial benefit to herself (i.e. a house on her mother's farm and free babysitter close by). It may be too late, but she should have made a deal with her mother about ringing before she visits etc - just like someone who lives separately from their family. He daughter may have used the alcohol to cook with and she tipped it down the sink without asking first. When you live on someone else's property they can always throw that card in your face i.e. she should get out if she really wants a change because it seems "Granny"  won't. I don't think Angie would leave though- the convenience is too great for her.
Replied By: strine on Nov 25, 2013, 3:26AM
The mother admitted that she gives her son "money" when he is having a bad day and not coping. And then she argued that she was teaching her child to cope with the world and he is well rounded. Seems wrong to be teaching your child to cope by sticking your breast in their mouth. He's old enough to learn real coping strategies for when he's having a bad day.  She even laughed when explaining it- as if she just realised it's weird. Does this woman have "Relations" with her husband in the bed with the 4yr old in there too?

Imagine the sons finding out  when they're older that their mother breast fed them for that long? People who wear their kids around use the excuse that African people do it, except the don't do it for attachment, they do it so their child isn't eaten by a lion while they're making dinner. They don't live in Africa and using an excuse that isn't even used by African people is beyond wrong and a "first world" elitist use of poor African people Do any of them know an African?
Replied By: lorimom1234 on Apr 4, 2013, 5:37PM
No one gave the mom a chance to talk.  And Dr. Sears should be ashamed.  It was Dr. Sears' parents' book that shaped by birth and parentlng theory.  They LITERALLY wrote a book on it and raised him accordingly.  Why didn't he do a better job of sticking up for her?  My now 18, 16 and 12 year old children slept in our bed and breastfed beyond a year.  I even tandem nursed for a very short time.  That tandem nursed child is now an incredibly independent pre med student who has a bigger sense of self than anyone I know.  i am soooo disappointed in Dr. Phil and Dr. Sears.
Replied By: delsol on Apr 2, 2013, 4:49PM
I have never been so riled up as to post on a show's website.  I have respected the Dr. Phil show in the past, but after seeing the attack on the Attachment Parenting Mom, I have lost a lot of respect.  Attachment parenting does NOT mean parents don't set limits for their children.  This mom LOVES her kids and is totally dedicated to them - she did not get to speak, she got called names, got accused of things that were not true...it was awful to watch.  Dr. Jim Sears did not even get to speak.  I am so disappointed in Dr Phil going to shock value rather than information value.  There was NOTHING to learn from this episode, and that mother got attacked for no reason.   The people doing the attacking were grossly misinformed as well.

Some points that need to be made:

Wearing a baby in a sling helps them feel secure. That mom did not say she wore them in sling and prevented motor development - that was a unfounded accusation that she did not get to respond to.
Breasts are made to feed our children, we are mammals, and many societies breastfeed well into toddlerhood.  Sick people make this sexual or gross.   

Co-sleeping has been proven to be beneficial for the entire family and is much more natural for humans.

Also, this whole concept of raising kids to be good adults - how about raising kids to be good KIDS?  Let them be secure, loving, children who get to enjoy being children.  Why would we tell our babies "You are going to be an adult some day so you better tow the line now! Sleep alone, cry if you want, but you will sleep alone because that's what you have to do as an adult".  It is so silly.  Most adults never want to sleep alone either, so why do we force our children?  Stop reminding us that our job is to raise adults - let's let our children be loved, be children, and grow into balanced adults surrounded by love, boundaries, and encouragement.  Attachment parents are doing that too, not just Ferber-ites.

It sickens me that the show did not educate viewers on attachment parenting, Ferber sleep training, or other theories.   Instead we got to listen to attacks and then spend MORE time talking to that train wreck of a granny.     The show has lost it's informational value for me - I felt that I may as well have turned to Jerry Springer.

I hope some amends are made to that mom, to Dr. Sears, and to parents everywhere who are genuinely trying to find their way in parenting that does not include screaming and crying and tantrums and power struggles.  These kids are in fact turning out fantastic, and there is a ton of research to back that up.  I use some attachment parenting aspects but my daughter prefers her own bed now (she is only 1!), she is already starting to wean, and I only carry her for convenience into the store or hiking, etc.  It's guidance, not a cult, and each child is different.  I intended to nurse into toddlerhood, but she is happy with cups, so we'll wean - others may need that nursing longer.  Don't attack mothers who are loving, doing what is natural, and are following good solid research from leading pediatricians. 

Replied By: elledanurse on Apr 1, 2013, 1:41PM
I would like to defend the poor Mom you bashed and attacked on national TV on your show March 29, 2013 Kathy. What she does for her own children and what she feels is best - is NONE of anyone's business, and certainly doesn't hurt them. And those genuinely STUPID audience members who gave their 2 cents, were ignorant and should be ashamed. For the really stupid one who claimed that baby-wearing and breastfeeding was WRONG - was obviously never breastfed and I feel bad for her when she gets deathly ill someday....knowing as a lactation consultant in training that breastfed infants/toddlers are proven to be healthier for a LIFETIME. And I suppose if she had or has kids - she never wore a Baby Bjorn or Chicco carrier...huh? Guess what, even with a buckle or strap - its still BABY WEARING. Most people do it and don't even know. How is she weird for wearing her 4 month old INFANT??!!! Its a BABY. Her food is breastmilk and thats what it should be exclusively for 6 months and until 1 year of age and actually The WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION recommends (strongly) breastfeeding for AT LEAST 2 YEARS!!! Prove why that is wrong, I dare you.
I can't believe how she was attacked by all sides even by Dr Phil! It was an outrage. And not one supporter??!
How is that fair? I want Kathy to know she has plenty of supporters.
I may not practice attachment parenting to the fullest. I do not share a bed, we stopped at 3 months as we all sleep better in separate beds (but that is just us) and I work full time so I can't be with them 24/7. But I still breastfeed my 2 year old, I believe in child-led weaning. The world average is 2 years - 7 years old to wean.
I am not saying I will go that long, but if I did - what does that hurt some stranger? It doesn't.
I wish I still wore her at times too, we all have those days our toddler is being clingy and you can't get anything done. It's a win-win for all, baby gets to be close to Mama and Mama gets stuff done around the house.
And wearing a 4 month old INFANT - again - is completely normal! She's damn near a newborn for crying out loud!
I feel bad for the kids of those obviously un-educated and ignorant women in the audience.
Next time you have a "controversial" issue on the show, try being fair and having supportive members of the audience and cast who don't straight talk out of their butts!
I wish I was there that day. That poor woman was done wrong by you and your show.
And there is much more to attachment parenting than just extended breastfeeding.
And I will have you know - my daughter is well rounded and independent, as I do work full time there is no separation anxiety - which actually is normal at a certain age.
Replied By: housewife52 on Mar 31, 2013, 8:29AM
You know, I really have no objection to a mother breastfeeding as long as she pleases, or any of the other things.  It's different than the choices I made when raising my children, but that doesn't mean it's wrong. This show did bring back a memory of a story my mother shared with me years ago. At a family reunion, when my mother was a young girl,this was possibly in the 30s, a five year old little boy went up to his mom, munching  on a chicken leg, climbed on his mother's lap, and announced, "I want *itty."  They were country folks and didn't use the word "breast". His mother obliged and even back then, there was discussion in the family as to whether it was "right".  I kinda hafta chuckle when I think of this story.
Replied By: jennifer_mom on Mar 31, 2013, 12:44AM
I was so digusted by the comments in this show.  I honestly think that many of the comments came from a place of guilt, and are unsupported by science.

I breastfed both of my children, my oldest until he was 5.5 years old, my youngest until she was about 4-4.5 years old.  I also co-slept (didn't even set up the crib for my second because it was just a giant laundry basket for my first), and wore them for years, and cloth diapered and refuse to spank.  Now that they are older I am even more sure that I did the right thing.  I see their compassion, their independence, their intelligence and their social development and know that prioritizing their needs when they were littles is a big part of why I have well disciplined, self motivated and remarkably compassionate young people now.

I am also beyond tired of the myth that meeting your child's needs and managing behaviors in a non-violent way is somehow spoiling them.  I also laugh at the concept that co-sleeping inteferes in parental relationships.  I honestly feel sorry for parents who never have the kids snuggled up in bed.  You don't understand all the precious moments you miss.
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