2009 Shows

(Original Air Date: 05/30/03) Tragedy can change lives in an instant, often leaving us wondering what to do next. In this powerful episode, Dr. Phil discusses strategies for coping with personal disaster. Drew and Amanda said they were crippled with guilt after the death of their 3-year-old son. Although the tot's drowning was accidental, Amanda said she didn't deserve to enjoy life. Plus, Geri's husband, Scott, suffered from bipolar disorder and took his own life. Geri said she struggled with anger and couldn't forgive her husband for leaving her. If you have difficulty moving on after a loss, and you punish yourself for things outside of your control, don't miss this important show!

Find out what happened on the show.
Replied By: pamaustin43 on Mar 24, 2013, 11:29PM - In reply to susarean
I know this message is several years after the show but tonight I finally decided to try and find the show you did on Dr Phil several years ago about the loss of your son.

After all these years the show stayed with me in the back of my mind,nIt was so touching to me I remember crying during the show it was so touching to my heart.

I was so happy tonight when i found it and was able to refresh my mind on the story Dr Phil told about god taking the children for walks and the chld who doesnt go is because a loved ones tears keep blowing out his candle. I love that story it helped me so much with my own personal grieving.

I would love to know how these parents are doing now?
Replied By: drphil100xcx on Jul 29, 2011, 12:55PM - In reply to nieceylll
Although you are suffering a tragic loss of your husband,consider how your life would have been had he never been in your life?  In this time of struggle, you were both lucky to find each other, find a person you could both love and trust.  Not too many people can say the same.

You will be going through crying, talking to God, feeling like you are a burden to your friends as you repeat your problems.

But this is a time when you will find your real friends from your acquaintences.

When my father died at age 50, my mother went to the University I was attending to major in English.  She worked as the Criminal Science secretary.  She had a blast.  She made friends, went to book readings and study groups.  When she went to a study group at a local bar, one of her professor's felt up her thigh - she was aghast but humored.

In her English class, she saw a female student give the female professor one red rose.  However, my mother was already used to homosexuality being a Wave in the Navy - but it was fun anyway.

We took some classes together in the summer.

All of these activities helped her.  But she said when she moved into the new home, just after Pop died, she heard someone sitting in her wicker chair.  Then she felt someone gently stroke her bangs, just like Pop did - she was not afraid.  She knew he was looking after her.
Replied By: drphil100xcx on Jul 29, 2011, 12:31PM
Unless one has experienced a family member or loved one who has committed suicdie, then the people from outside of this realm placate one with meaningless statements.

From the time my brother was 13 until he was 20, he was finally successful in committing suicide.  That morning he had given me his PDR (Physician Desk Reference).  It would not be until after the suicide that I would find out that people give away their prized position.  I should have looked inside the cover, to see he had written Captain Peter Fasano, MD.  However he was a Corpsman in the medical arena.  I was busy studying for my courses in my freshman year.

Mama would normally buy him some food at the commissary and cigarettes.  When she used his key to the door, the chain bolt was on.  When she said it smell like spoiled meat, I pushed her back into the hallway, instructing her not to enter the apartment.

The bedroom door was closed, as I called his name with no response.  I opened his bedroom door; he had a pair of sheets he never used.  The bedspread was raised due to the outgassing of the decomposed body.  I kept on calling his name, before I gently tugged at the edge of the bedspread as it flew across the bed and onto the floor.

He was in rigor, with his hands and legs up in the air.  His body was totally black, as if he had been burned.  He was smart enough to get a couple of prescription pads from the doctor's office in the '70's to write a script for the meds he needed.

I miss him so much and still do.  When we were kids we were very close.  He was a genious.  When we were in our early teens, he wanted us to develop a maching that developed controlling the brain waves for patients in a depressive state - he was ahead of his time.

When we were younger, I would sometimes climb on top of his bunk and we would sometimes talk so much, that we would wake up cuddling as small children for comfort in a hectic life.

Suicide has been critized as being a selfish act.  It was Nietsche who said that "...it is always consoling to think about suicide, in that one ges through many a bad night."

I know the act of suicide can tear a family apart.  But do not people commit suicide to hurt one's loved ones.  He is schizoprhenic and I am bipolar or manic depressive, and I have been very suicidal.  But I do not want to have attempts - I want to get it right the first time.

The feeling of no other way to turn is at least gives one some hope out of this world.  I believe that doctor assisted suicide or instructions on how one can die a peaceful death should be provided to all those that are struggling with the pain of life.
Replied By: passat on Jul 16, 2009, 10:21PM - In reply to teach282
Have you had a child die on you?  Easy to say "Are you kidding me?"  But you havien't walked in their shoes.  I've lost a son and to move on is easier said than done.  Dr. Phil gave them some valuable tools and the show brought out how they are doing much better. 
Replied By: passat on Jul 16, 2009, 10:15PM - In reply to love32084
The Bible teaches that when a person dies he is aquitted of his sin.   Only God can be the judge of the final destiny of our loved ones.  My mother commited suicide and the one that gave her memorial talk read from the Bible Ecclesiastes 7:7; Romans 6:7.  I truly believe she was not in her right mind (as is true of most that take their life) and God see's the heart and knows all the circumstances.
Replied By: passat on Jul 16, 2009, 5:41PM - In reply to puggerluvr
HI Puggerlvr - Just thinking of you and wanted you to know we care about what you're going through.
Another thing I read (which you may have read too) is that the most comfort comes from those who
have had the same lose; namely - losing a child.   We have found this to be true.  Hope you're doing
as well as can be expected.
Replied By: grandmashell on Jul 6, 2009, 9:21PM
This show was so riveting to me, I can hardly begin.  I tuned in to Dr. Phil's show on the day it aired in our area and was only able to watch the last 20 minutes or so of the show., missing the initial part of this couple's story and the loss of their little boy.  The tears flowed.  Our grandson, Andrew was 3 years old when he died on Sunay,August 24, 2008 in his front yard .   It was the result of a freak ATV accident in speed of less than 10 miles per hour, later proven by law enforcement .  His father was the driver, and his 8 year old sister were on board as well.  I have watched my daughters young family try to reconnect with life throughout this past year and I dread the anniversary of his death.  I can't begin to tell you how much he is missed or the impact this has made on their family and ours as grandparents.  I trust that God along with family and friends will help us heal.  This 4th of July holiday was painful, as Andrew loved every holiday. I struggle everday missing him, as many others do as well.  Andrew had his Golden birthday (turning 4) in heaven.  I sometimes still muddle through days, and think...it's been almost a year.  I wish peace to anyone who experiences this much heartache.  With prayers, Grandma Shell
Replied By: laboiteajack on Jul 2, 2009, 1:34PM
What a powerfull show.  I can say that I know how it feels like when you loose a son.  In 1977 I lost my son and to this day I feel guilty.  Although he had a sickness (neuroblastom) I always thought there was something I did.  He died 3 months later.  I never thought of letting him go.  In February 2005 I lost my husband.  Hart attack.  In February of 2009, I lost my mother.  She had dementia, but died of a breast cancer.  I learned very important tools today.  Hope I can put them to practice.
Thank you
Replied By: passat on Jun 30, 2009, 11:00PM - In reply to puggerluvr
It's  so very hard.  As I said in my comment; I found the show impowering in defining our loss by the good memories of our child rather than that tragic moment he died.  It puts an awful burden on our deceased loved one and on us as parents to carry on.  We have strong faith in the promises God gives in His written word the Bible.  We KNOW we will see our son again in the resurrection.  Our faith has been the strongest help of all and reading the Bible daily.  Drawing close to God at such times is so comforting and praying for understanding.  The Bible does say "Time and unforseen occurance befall us all".  Ecclesiastes 9:11. I am so very sorry for your recent loss of your beloved son.  We can so relate to what you're feeling although each persons grief and experience is different.  For me as a mother it was not being able to breath and the heaviness on my heart and chest - literally.  I'm sure you have felt this.  I feel it is important to be in contact with your physician as I'm sure you have been - and that anti-depressants or other medication can be helpful if needed.  Even though we have faith of seeing our son again we desperately miss having him with us now.  Like with your son's motorcycle accident - tragic things happen so quickly.  It rips your heart out.  A couple of books I especially enjoyed are:  "The Grieving Garden"  (living with the death of a child) by Suzanne Redfern and Susan K. Gilbert; and  "Resilience" by Elizabeth Edwards.  I've read many things but those 2 books stand out.  I also got a puppy - something to hold on to - and that has helped.  I'm here for you whenever you need to talk.
We feel your pain.  I'm so very sorry for your loss.
Replied By: susarean on Jun 30, 2009, 9:36PM - In reply to puggerluvr
Hey Puggerluvr,

I'm so very sorry to hear about the passing of your son. An accidental...or unexpected...death is so difficult to accept. I can tell you from experience, that it does get better, but it takes many many moons to reach the place of acceptance.

I thought Dr. Phil had a lot of good suggestions...trying to remember the good times instead of focusing on the moment of death...that we don't want pain to be the only remembrance we have of our loved ones. And then, of course, there was the incredible story about the little boy who went to a place where there was no cold water, no darkness, no pain. There were a lot of other children there, and everyday, god would come and take the children for a walk. Before their walk, they would all light a candle to take with them on their walk. One day, someone noticed that the little boy never went with the others for the walk, and they asked him why? He said that everytime he lit his candle to go on the walk, his Mommy's tears put his candle out.

That story is so powerful, in and of itself, but here is one that floored me...hearing that story at all...

15 years ago, my best friend and her daughter, who was my daughter's best friend, were killed in a freak boating accident. "Morning Star" was 36. Eliza was 12.

Three days before the accident, my daughter and I spent the day with them. Eliza told my daughter about a dream she had had the night before...

She dreamed she was in heaven, and there were lots of children there. They were all holding lit candles, but Eliza's candle wasn't lit. Her father asked her why her candle wasn't lit, and she said, "Because, Daddy, every time you cry, you put my candle out"

Now, this dream came years before Dr. Phil origanally aired this program, even though it is from the archives. I'm so curious to know if anyone else has ever heard it before. Where did he get that story?

Again, I'm so sorry for the passing of your son. I hope you can KNOW...with all your heart...that he is in a place of perfect peace. He would not want you to be sad. But Alas, grief is a process that we must get through in order to find the peace that comes when we can finally reach acceptance. Allow your Self to feel the emotions and hang on tight. My heart goes out to you.

Wishing you All that is Good,
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