2009 Shows

In these devastating economic times, companies are closing their doors, and millions of Americans have found themselves out of work. One of the cities hardest hit by the recession is Detroit, Michigan where the unemployment rate has skyrocketed to 24 percent. Dr. Phil goes on location in Motor City to talk to families in serious financial despair. He sits down with Jennifer and Jake, who were recently laid off. Now the college graduates say they can’t afford a home phone or baby clothes for their 7-month-old son. Jake says he fears that if he doesn’t get a job soon, his family will be out on the street. Don’t miss Dr. Phil’s action plan for this couple in crisis. Next, Shaniece was recently laid off from Chrysler and worries that her husband, Devin, could receive a pink slip any day now. They say the stress takes a toll on their marriage. What can they do to turn their relationship and their financial outlook around? Then, Dr. Phil and best-selling author Mitch Albom tour Detroit’s historic Pilgrim Church and meet with a drug-dealer-turned-pastor who uses the rundown building to help Detroit’s homeless. Don’t miss Dr. Phil’s surprise for the minister. Plus, find out how you can donate to this worthy cause!

The Mental Health Matters segment on Learned Helplessness can be found at the bottom of the "Reinvent Yourself" show page.

Find out what happened on the show.
Replied By: jpease5 on May 12, 2009, 6:19AM
I was so irritated at yesterdays show when Dr.Phil went to Detroit and zeroed in on the one family who is having a hard time making it.  The topper was when she was going through her sons drawers and pulled out an outfit that she claimed she "had" to buy at a yard sale...are you kidding me? I am a stay at home mother of 4..We are a family of 6 who live off of just over 20,000$ a year..no I didnt forget the 1 infront of that number. for real, twenty thousand. ALL my kids have always worn hand me downs, freebies and garage sale treasures..and you would never know it by looking at it. We have no car payments, actually, we have no debt at all. Years ago we were living in Michigan and saw that the economly was going south, we quickly sold our oversized 5bed 3 bath home and downsized to a more suitable home (and much easier to clean) that we could afford, We have since then been very cautious with our money and been able to pay off our two vehicles and mortgage. Come on now...if we can do it with 4 kids this family can do it with one. She really irritated me by talking like it was soooo below her to buy clothes at a garage sale...poor thing...swallow your pride and realize what really IS best for your child ..is it brand name clothes, a fancy car, a fancy house??? or is it a family that loves each other, doesnt argue and isnt stressed?  Weigh your options...take the smart route out. Dont waste your income tax returns. dump it on debt, get out of debt. Live SO much happier!!!
Replied By: mixter1 on May 7, 2009, 1:27PM - In reply to gmahershberger
Replied By: fthayer on May 6, 2009, 9:45AM
I feel for the couples that were on the Dr. Phil Show for this episode. Even though Detroit is a shining example of a city in financial despair, Dr. Phil emphasized that it could be any other major city in America. That goes for Canada too. The city of Ottawa, Ontario is my hometown. About a decade ago, it became known as the high tech capital of Canada. Since I wasn't interested in getting a high tech job, I decided to move to Kingston, about a two hour drive along Lake Ontario. That strategy appeared to be wise because the IT industry went belly-up & had to lay off hundreds of employees as a result. Of all the high tech companies hurt by the state of the economy, giants such as Corel and Nortel especially felt the crunch. I moved to Kingston, Ontario exactly eight years ago. I was fortunate enough to get a job in retail with Winners Apparel. After that, I had a chance to work at a major American-based call centre call Star Tek. However, that wasn't the right fit for me. So, I ended up getting a job at a famous coffee house company called Tim Horton's. Perhaps you've heard of it. It has worked out very well because of my relationship with the company, my customer service skills, and my ability to work at a fast-paced environment. Even though there is a stigma working in a coffee shop, the company has been very good to me. In the process, I have returned the favour as I have won four consecutive Spirit Awards for being the most enthusiastic employee of my store. Because I have a Bachelor of Arts degree from Carleton University, I expect better of myself. However, I'd be crazy to leave Tim Horton's because of the job security. I have been around for five years and its doubtful that they'd get rid of someone with four consecutive Spirit Awards. It is also imperative to know that I'm not getting any younger & I don't want to work at Tim Horton's for the rest of my life. Even though I'd like to leave in the long-run, my job is the best thing that I have in my life right now. I enjoy it a lot and have plenty of fun with the customers and coworkers. I guess I have it good since there are a lot of people who just hate their jobs with a passion. My dream is to become a professional writer like Pierre Burton or J.K. Rowling. People keep telling me how much they like my work after reading my articles in the church newsletter. However, I'm not about to leave Tim Horton's because of the reasons I've just stated, so I'll do my writing on the side.  Having said all that I hope that the city of Detroit can "reinvent itself" by attracting investors that could give a boost to their local economy. It's great that Dr. Phil spoke to their citizens and had couples such as Jennifer and Jake as well as Shaniese and Devin who are in financial ruins. With hard work and perseverance, things will work out. I am living proof of that. I sincerely wish the best of luck to all four of you & hopefully Dr. Phil can have these wonderful couples appear in a follow-up show. Speaking of Detroit, it's too bad that the Red Wings lost to Anaheim last night. I predict that they'll win Game 4 to get right back in their second round series in the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Fred, from Kingston, ON Canada 
Replied By: bethanco on May 5, 2009, 4:54PM - In reply to ahbabnynah
You stated :  "Oh I'm not tryin to be a jerk - I feel sorry for all those who lost their jobs" -  Except
for anyone who makes more than $18,000 a year and has a phone in their house, and gets to buy new clothes - wah on them".

I was born and raised in Detroit in a lower middle class neighborhood.  I had hand me down clothes at best.   I learned to work at a job starting in high school.   I worked hard to get through college.  I went to college at night and worked FULL time during the day.  I moved to Colorado one day - took a risk!
You keep repeating yourself wah wah.  Read your e-mail wah wah wah . . . I am sickened by your lack of compassion towards these people who are on hard times.  Is is absolutely devestating to loose a job!  

Yet you state "Do I compain?"   READ your e-mail -  you are doing nothing but complaining - such as
"They make twice what my husband makes and they are on unemployment . . etc".

Its called Self-Improvement  - rather like climbing a ladder.   One day you might fall off a rung but you start again and reinvent yourself and climb again.  You decide what success looks like and how high you are willing to climb.

I agree the goal is not Material Success but small acts of random kindness applied each day and compassion to others who hurt not wah...wah on them!
Replied By: bethanco on May 5, 2009, 11:48AM - In reply to ahbabnynah
I hear your anger at the fact that you never go out to dinner, have never owned a phone in
your home  and your daughters clothes pretty much always came from thrift stores.
Also you stated  the first couple is :  "a couple of freakin cry babies....whiney little babies" also my husband and I make $18,000 a year.

Since you are busy bashing those newly employed from Detroit who are shell shocked lets
examine you and what you have shared with us to enlighten us about your circumstances.

Let me ask you what you have done to better your circumstances?   Is one of you unemployed or doesn't work such as you or your husband?
Have you tried to get a job so you have two incomes in the family -  I'll bet not!
Have you gone back to work since $18,000 a year is close to poverty level for a family -  probably not.
Have you gone to college to try to better your lot?     When you called that couple whiney babies you were name calling people who are hurting.
At least this couple has an education and will be able to move to another city if needed.   

I feel you for -  you have it doubly hard -  a low income family close to the poverty line and never developed yourself -  under-developed its called.  
Did you think you were predestined to be poor?   You wen't.
Laziness and cowardice are two of the greatest enemies of the poor sometimes -   
Laziness flies from all risk!   Cowardice keeps us secure in hesitation.
Sooner or later you have to risk everything in order to gain everything -  but to do it you need Gods help.
Just a hint.

Replied By: gmahershberger on May 5, 2009, 10:19AM
II have been unsuccessful in finding the info about this topic mentioned by Dr. Phil at the end of the show on 5-04.. I would like to know more.
Replied By: ahbabnynah on May 5, 2009, 8:38AM - In reply to kaydak7
Holy crap it mad me so mad! They make twice what my husband makes and they are on unemployment! We never go out to dinner or to the movies unless we have a giftcard. We have never owned a home phone and pretty much all my daughters clothes come from resale shops. Couple of freakin cry babies man. I agree that they should have ppl that are REALLY affected by this crisis. Like the ppl who are now having to live in those tent cities or in homeless shelters. Not some whiney little babies. "Oh I cant go see a movie with my friends anymore!!!"
Replied By: ahbabnynah on May 5, 2009, 8:30AM
Ok Im not tryin to be a jerk. I feel sorry for all those who lost thier jobs. But that first couple made me angry. They went from $120k to $37k a year. Talking about how they cant go out to eat and watch movies with their friends. They haven't bought any brand new clothes for their son. They dont have a home phone. Im sorry but wah. My husband makes $18k a year. We NEVER go out to dinner or see a movie unless we get a giftcard for it. In my daughters 3yrs of life I have bought her maybe 10 brand new outfits. I buy all her clothes from resale shops. We have NEVER had a home phone. Yet do I complain? No! It just disgusts me that these ppl are on here complaining they cant go out to dinner with their friends when there are tons of ppl who wouldnt be able to eat at all with out help from others.  Get a grip ppl.
Replied By: bethanco on May 5, 2009, 5:10AM - In reply to dreamstar
To:  dreamstar

Learned Helplessness is not a mental illness -  it is a  Psychological Theory related to depression and associated with abusive relationships.  You give up and become dependent on the very thing you should learn to be independent of.

It is the opposite of "learned confidence".
You may not be able to change your world but you can changed how you respond to it and who
your friends are and how you allow yourself to be treated as Step #1
Guard against things that make you grow even more dependent or helpless.
Eye opening ?    Good Luck -

Look it up on the internet if you are interested.
Replied By: bethanco on May 5, 2009, 4:17AM
I still have family living in the suburbs of Detroit.
I grew up in Detroit area.  I moved to Colorado 30 years ago. 
I talked to my sister yesterday who lives in the suburbs.

Detroit is in a Depression not Recession.   There are neighborhoods of Detroit you do not
drive in let alone walk in - they will shoot you because you do not belong.

The latest in the newspapers are those committing suicide off the freeway overpasses.
Detroit is a 3rd World Country - poverty, job loss and run down houses and has been like
that since I left there 30 years ago.
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