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Jon and Kate Plus ...

What IS it about "Jon and Kate Plus 8"? You'd have to be under a rock on a desert island these days to miss the reports that seem to be coming out daily on the heads of household in the Gosselin family.

A photo of Jon leaving a club at 2 a.m. with a woman not his wife. Denials of an affair followed by supposed confirmation of the affair followed by more denials. Kate, making the TV rounds to promote her new book, ends up answering questions over and over about dealing with the tabloid allegations. Then, allegations of an affair by Kate -- which she has also vehemently denied.

It's enough to make one wonder why in the world these parents continue to subject their family to the rest of the world (and who's watching all those kids when their parents aren't). And yet, the reality TV show continues. Its fifth season is supposed to begin airing in two weeks.

The Gosselins' reality TV life first began to intrigue me when Kate showed off her post-children belly, noting that this is what everyone's curious about, right? Listening to Jon and Kate's parent-only sessions on the show, I've always wondered about how their sniping affected their relationship. But good or bad, they are who they are, and as Kate Gosselin says, she doesn't pretend to be perfect. What she does enjoy is her fan e-mails, in which parents tell her that they realize they can handle two kids after watching her handle eight of them.

Kate's parenting tips have made the rounds here a few times, with WDC 21113 noting in a picky eater blog last February:

To quote Jon (from "Jon and Kate Plus 8") -- "she's not a short order cook". If someone doesn't like dinner, there's always breakfast the next day.

and stephs98 earlier this week:

I don't watch "Jon and Kate" on a regular basis, but she's said a couple of things in interviews and on a few episodes I have watched that I really liked. Like when feeding eight kids at once, it's easy because "there are no options." Meaning -- what she puts on their plate is what they get! I heard her say that and I thought to myself "there's something there -- why wouldn't that apply to just one or two kids?" So we've always followed that example - our 2 year old gets indulged with her "favorites" now and then, but what we put on her plate is what's for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Period.

I've also heard her say that sure, it's difficult going out and doing stuff with eight kids at once, but it's better than NOT trying to do stuff and just sitting at home all day. Whenever I feel stressed at the thought of managing an outing for our 2 year old, I remember that. Just helps me keep perspective.

What do you think of the Gosselins? Do you watch the show or avoid it? Do they make you feel like you've got it easy in comparison?

By Stacey Garfinkle |  May 13, 2009; 7:50 AM ET  | Category:  Newsmakers
Previous: Why Can't I Stop Fighting in Front of My Kids? | Next: More on the Juggle

Comments


"What do you think of the Gosselins? Do you watch the show or avoid it?"

I've watched "Yawn and Hate" about 4 times when I was visiting relatives. That was more than enough for me. I was mildly surprised to find that the show is VERY popular with female college students. They can't stand Hate, but they love the kids. Go figure.

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 13, 2009 7:57 AM | Report abuse

Unfortunately since neither John nor Kate are working (outside managing their children and Reality show), and they just bought a big new house, and have a security staff, publicist and additional other people on their payroll - they might HAVE to keep up with the show. I suppose Kate's book brought in quite a bit of money, but they seem to have large expenses on top of raising 8 kids.

I don't watch the show regularly but have seen some over the years. The Gosselins seem to be discussed everywhere, TV, internet articles, radio shows. It gets to be a bit much, but this free publicity probably only increases their bottom line, so maybe all this "controversy" is all contrived? Who knows...

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 13, 2009 8:12 AM | Report abuse

yyaaawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn.

Posted by: interestingidea1234 | May 13, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

I watch the show sometimes -- I don't tivo it, but if it's on while I'm flipping channels, I'll stop. I think the kids are cute. And it is interesting to see how they deal with so many kids.

I don't love either Jon or Kate, but I don't think they're monsters, either. They clearly love their kids and I like how Kate tries sometimes to start special family traditions.

Posted by: newsahm | May 13, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

I never thought I would watch a show like this (I hate reality tv and most tv in general) but I love this show! I find it so inspiring to watch them handle 8 kids and I think I learn a lot. Kate is super organized. Also, I like seeing how each kid has his or her own personality. I hope everything in the news lately is false but sometimes the old saying "where there's smoke there's fire" is true. I don't blame them for doing the show-they have 8 kids to support-but I do wonder at what age the kids might say, "Enough." There are episodes showing them in the bathroom etc that will be embarrassing when they are school age.

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 9:28 AM | Report abuse

I thnk they are pimping their children and they should be ashamed of themselves. As Cheekymonkey said, neither of them work aside from the show, so they have to keep doing it. I feel sorry for the kids because when they have problems, they are broadcast on national TV, they don't get any privacy.

Posted by: dennis5 | May 13, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

"You'd have to be under a rock on a desert island these days to miss the reports..."

Never heard of the Gosselins. Don't read tabloids either, but now I feel like I'm *really* living in the dark.

Now that I've made my comment for today, I guess I'll go and crawl back under my rock.

Posted by: WhackyWeasel | May 13, 2009 9:34 AM | Report abuse

I find them to be a loathsome pair. They were 23/25 when they went through in vitro to have these (too many) children. In what parallel universe is a 23 y.o. worried about infertility?

Posted by: flabbergast | May 13, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

Flabbergast, some 23 year olds do have trouble with infertility. They were married and ready to start a family-what is wrong with that?

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 11:14 AM | Report abuse

"In what parallel universe is a 23 y.o. worried about infertility?"

A friend of mine had a diagnosis of infertility relatively early. Ironically, the diagnosis was wrong as she unexpectedly conceived a daughter with her boyfriend.

If there is a diagnosis and one is ready, I'd say get a move on. I've had two close friends whose wives were diagnosed with endometriosis. In both cases, the symptoms became bad around the age of 30 and neither couple was able to conceive.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | May 13, 2009 11:30 AM | Report abuse

She already had two kids - she even says: oh, I just wanted one more. BUT SHE WENT thru fertility drugs. WHAT did she expect???? Cause the first time, she had twins, without expecting THAT.

In any event, that's one reason I don't like the show, cannot related to Kate, I feel sorry for the husband, who has to live with her (i.e., she just seems selfish, and he never says anythign about it).

I do like the ...um...what's their name? 18 and counting that christian family. I just think THEY are so darn cute and sweet. A little odd, and it doesn't make sense how they can afford what they have either, but no one's asking me for money, that I know of.

Of course, I agree re: 'pimping' your kids - they didn't get to choose it, it's a little weird.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 13, 2009 11:33 AM | Report abuse

but, see, it's not like people are ENTITLED to have their own children. Sometimes it's not to be.

I know, a very unpopular opinion.

Posted by: atlmom1234 | May 13, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

i graduated recently from the college where Jon's first brush with infidelity occurred and know people involved with the situation. Honestly...if i was married to Kate I would run screaming too...

Posted by: clearbluewater33 | May 13, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Where's the back-up topic?

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 13, 2009 11:39 AM | Report abuse

I don't care for the program, but at least it's "better" than the duggar family cult show. THAT show makes me want to hurl. The girls are all in dresses, the boys get to wear jeans, and they're all little Stepford kids. EWWWWW

Posted by: Alex511 | May 13, 2009 12:01 PM | Report abuse

What channel is this show on? Why do you watch? Is there something to learn from them? Only heard of them when the infidelity news hit the air. I must live under a rock with my two kids.

Happy.

Posted by: TTCP | May 13, 2009 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Kate has PCOS, and was told very early that she was infertile. And as loyal viewers know, she and Jon never wanted sextuplets for the second pregnancy, only a singlet or another pair of twins, and they have described themselves as a infertility treatment "nightmare" and "failure." However, they did not want to reduce the pregnancy, so 8 it is.

I really hope they work out their problems, because they are truly devoted to their kids, and it would be a shame for the kids for the parents to divorce.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 13, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

What are the IQ levels of the loyal viewers of the show?

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 13, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 13, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I get the fertility struggles, sure. But "need fertility drugs" does not equal "must risk having sextuplets." The worst-kept secret in fertility drugs is that doctors know exactly how many eggs are developing -- and no responsible doc will continue treatment if there are too many (BTDT).

The problem isn't the fertility drugs, it's the patients. That whole process gets so emotional and trying; you get completely invested in the success of each cycle (especially when you add the "how many cycles can we afford" pressure into the mix). So even when the doc has stopped treatment because there are too many eggs, a lot of women will go have sex on their own anyway, because they just want a baby so much. That's where you get 6 kids from.

But, hey, not my family, not my show, not my thing.

Posted by: laura33 | May 13, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

The Duggars are completely different in lifestyle from the Gosselins. I have a seen a couple Duggar Family episodes over the years too, and you won't see kids on the toilet or fighting. The Duggar parents are in complete unison.

While neither lifestyle or show really strikes my fancy, they are both making money by putting their families out there. So far I don't see any "scandals" from the Duggars such as infidelity - and I don't think there will be any. But the Gosselin's have to know they are going to be targets for the press, it is sad but true.

Posted by: cheekymonkey | May 13, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

I think that is rude to imply you have a low IQ just because you enjoy their show. It's not the smartest thing on TV but there is a lot worse and it's a nice break from all the negative stuff out there.

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 1:59 PM | Report abuse

I really hope they work out their problems, because they are truly devoted to their kids, and it would be a shame for the kids for the parents to divorce.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 13, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I totally disagree. If they were "truly devoted to their kids", they wouldn't be subjecting them to being on the show.

Posted by: dennis5 | May 13, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

The kids are adorable but the parents are another story. She is so obnoxious and rude to her husband. Why he takes it, I don't know.

But all of these families are using their children as a way of supporting or subsidizing the rearing of their children.

If you want to think about the future of the Gosselin kids, just look at what happened to the Dionne quintuplets. Not a pretty picture. Reality tv is just the modern form of a circus. It is setting up your kid's intimate life experiences for the world to view.

She is so nasty, I can't believe people like her.

Posted by: foamgnome | May 13, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

What are the IQ levels of the loyal viewers of the show?

Posted by: jezebel3 | May 13, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse


Considerably higher than trolls like you.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 13, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

WashingtonDame, and someone like you who attacks people on a Parenting blog must have a really high IQ and a really happy life...

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

WashingtonDame, and someone like you who attacks people on a Parenting blog must have a really high IQ and a really happy life...

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 6:16 PM

You're correct on both counts. :)

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 14, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

WashingtonDame, and someone like you who attacks people on a Parenting blog must have a really high IQ and a really happy life...

Posted by: sunflower571 | May 13, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse


And BTW, I was the poster who was RESPONDING to the person who accused loyal viewers of having a low IQ. Maybe you should try to understand my post before you attack me.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | May 14, 2009 4:19 PM | Report abuse

MARRIAGE IS FOR LIFE!

“A wife is married to her husband as long as he lives.”
1 Corinthians 7:39

MARRIAGE = A COVENANT BETWEEN ONE MAN AND ONE WOMAN …UNTIL DEATH

“Everyone who divorces his wife and marries another, commits adultery and he who marries one who is divorced from a husband, commits adultery.” ---Jesus Christ
Luke 16:18

Divorce + Remarriage = Adultery

“A husband must not divorce his wife.”
1 Corinthians 7:11

“Let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth.”
Malachi 2:15

“Thou shall not commit adultery.”
Exodus 20:14

“The man who commits adultery is an utter fool, for he destroys his own soul.”
Proverbs 6:32

http://www.cadz.net/mdr.html

http://www.marriagedivorce.com/mdreform2.htm

Posted by: SearchYourBible | May 15, 2009 1:39 AM | Report abuse

People, does anyone understand how much it costs to raise and educate even one child? Kate and Jon did the best they could. I love the show. As far as my IQ is concerned, it is in the Highest side of the range. That does not make me smarter about raising a child or two. That is from experience. I really do hope that Jon and Kate get past this. They will always regret the fallout if they give in to the anger and pain that must be with them now. God bless and keep them.

Posted by: stella_durham | May 18, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

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