May 18, 2009

Kate Gosselin Steps Out with the Eight

Posted: 01:59 PM ET

By Kristin Boehm

art.kategosselin.cnnThe show – and the party – must go on, and Kate Gosselin made sure that happened over the weekend.

Outside Saturday, her minivan and two cars affiliated with the TLC show Jon and Kate Plus Eight were trailed by about five cars filled with paparazzi to the Party City in Reading, Penn., where she and all eight Gosselin kids shopped for supplies.

Kate kept the brood in line while buying streamers, balloons, plastic trays, candy and two Backyardigan piñatas. The celebration? A one-week-belated fifth birthday party for sextuplets Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah and Joel at The Blue Falls Grove Water Park on Sunday.

(Read More/See Kate w/ the family this weekend)

Filed under: Kate Gosselin • Larry King Live

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kim of berks county   May 18th, 2009 2:30 pm ET

gosselin without pity blog…
Kate, How do You Sleep at Night?
I began to think about this last night as I struggled with my own bought of insomnia. I realize Jon is certainly an avid participant on the greed wagon, but from my perspective I see you, Kate as the driving force of this whole debacle. Kate, you have done nothing to contribute to society or make this world a better place. In fact, neither you or your husband work to support your own children. You chose this path. You chose to use fertility methods with increased odds of high order multiples. Instead of working to support the family you created, you have parlayed your children’s private moments into a lucrative lifestyle of your own by throwing them into the world of reality television. What about the “love offerings” you gather at churches? You claim to be “Christian”, yet you have the audacity to take money literally stuffed into buckets called “love offerings” from people who are living lifestyles far more simple than yours. Have you ever thought of the people who are giving you these love offerings? They are more likely than not your average American family struggling to pay their own bills in this economy. Why do you not tell them the truth about your good fortune? Why do you not tell the truth that college funds were in fact created by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for the sextuplets? Why do you lie to them? Do you ever wonder while you lie awake at night if perhaps a family gave to you that did not have an excess to give because they believe your lies? It was not your faith or your god who chose you to be a mother of eight. Do you really think parents like the Baileys (who were also featured on TLC with a sextuplet pregnancy) wanted their babies any less? Do you think they lost two of their babies because they had less faith or fortitude than you? It was fertility treatments and then chance and only chance that led to the successful birth of your sextuplets. Why couldn’t you just be thankful for the lives of your children? Why couldn’t you just be thankful they were all healthy? Why couldn’t you be thankful for what was offered by your overwhelmingly generous community? When did your joy turn to greed and, as also discussed on this board, entitlement? Do you sleep better at night knowing your children had six matching cribs instead of the ones originally donated out of love? Do you sleep better at night knowing that fabric from Wal-Mart has never touched their skin? Are you proud of yourself when you walk out of Gymboree with bags filled with clothing that you haven’t paid for, haven’t worked for, and haven’t earned? Do you sleep well at night knowing that the show you sought for financial gain has shown your precious children at their most private moments (including nudity) for anyone to view as long as the internet exists? Are those trips to the spa actually relaxing when they have been paid for at the expense of your children’s privacy and dignity? Do you sleep well on all of your luxurious vacations knowing it has once again been paid for by the hard work of your children? Make no mistake Kate, those children are working. The camera does not lie. They are not having fun. They are not enjoying being raised in a studio that doubles as a home. Do you sleep well knowing that the kids are missing Aunt Jodi, Uncle Kevin and their cousins? Do you sleep well knowing that you allowed your children to love Beth, Bob and their kids and then cut them off as well? Really Kate, how do you sleep?

Submitted by Jennifer, mommy of two

i want this read and reread by everyone who say they love these kids.

Imperfect World   May 18th, 2009 5:32 pm ET

Jennifer, You are absolutely correct. Tell it like it is. And you did.

Avery   May 18th, 2009 6:09 pm ET

Anybody who has watched the show knows that Jon & Kate clash sometimes on the raising of their children, and Kate is defintely more commanding than Jon is. But I honestly feel that this whole drama is a publicity stunt to get more people to watch their show. If the kids aren't being abused it's non of anyone's business what goes on in their private life. Their show is a documentary of mulitple families, not a soap opera.

nick   May 18th, 2009 6:44 pm ET

LOOKING forward to Larry's book tomorrow,,will be @ Borders @ 9 am,,thanks,,,

Carolyn   May 18th, 2009 11:21 pm ET

People who bash Kate, a very responsible and organized mother, are completely ignorant. Kate gave Jon eight gorgeous and healthy babies, taking first rate care of them day in and day out. She deserves nothing but praise and support from her husband. He signed up for 'Til death do us part', not 'when things get a little uncomfortable, quit'. It's normal to go through ups and downs in a marriage, and for people to encourage him to quit his marriage & family for such trivial reasons is unfortunate and completely selfish & irresponsible. But, like Avery, I agree this is a publicity stunt for their upcoming season.

Helen A. Dixon   May 18th, 2009 11:21 pm ET

I am so through with Jon and Kate! They both make me sick and wondering just how much further is all of this "propaganda" going to go?! And how long do they really think the public is going to 'fall for their deceptive games' they're playing, while trying to drum up some new "suckers" (perhaps curious enough to want to see what it's all about) and you're hoping to snare into your greedy little web so you can keep your stupid "reality show" alive for one more season or two?
And, in the process, you won't have to WORK anymore for that year or two, hmm?

Now, true REALITY was the "Farrah Story" that we all watched last night! I'm sure you two, and your producer and staff didn't bother to watch it, of course - but you should have! That was an honest look at life and love and what is truly important!! "Life and/or Death" and how it's handled is the stuff of *Reality* and what really matters!! Your contrived little lame performances on your 'show' has worn thin, and all we can do now is hope that it will go away, and for the sake of your
- 8 - you can retire to "real life" with them (and hopefully they won't be too damaged from it all, and you can possibly be a real family, instead of egomaniacal imposters of one)!!! I could go on, but I won't - I've spent too much time on this now, and you're really not worth my time!

SLM   May 19th, 2009 11:58 am ET

This is NO reality show, it is all staged for the cameras.

Carrie   May 21st, 2009 12:51 am ET

I think that most of us could agree that if we had cameras in our faces all of the time we might crack under the pressure of constant scrutiny. This show started out as charming because we were in awe of a unique and interesting family. A simple curiosity. It is unfortunate that it has received negative gawking and boundries have not been respected in regard to privacy. If my marriage were being filmed most of America would assume that we were on the verge of divorce every day and perhaps hated each other at times but in all reality we love each other very much. I think that it is natural to want our way and bicker over stupid things. It does not mean that we are not willing and able to compromise or work together. We see 8 healthy and adjusted children, is this not a an accomplishment in itself? Until we are in their shoes we really don't know what it's like. They deserve a break.

kim of berks county   May 22nd, 2009 9:00 am ET

An open letter to Kate Gosselin:

Dear Kate,

Thank you for coming to Detroit last Thursday and being a part of Metro Parent Magazine's Distinguished Speakers Series. I know the hundreds of moms in the audience were excited to see you. I also appreciate your sharing with us the difficult time you are going through right now. The life of a celebrity isn't an easy one, as you are learning first hand. You're in the spotlight now. Surely, you're facing some trade-offs for offering your family to the public.

You've become a public figure yourself, Kate, and what you say and how you behave will be examined under a microscope. That's the price, I suppose, for being willing to share your life on your television show, "Jon & Kate Plus Eight." You get a nice paycheck, some great perks and celebrity status. In the balance, your life becomes exposed and you no longer have the same control as you did when you led a more private life. I'm not sure I'd take this deal, but your priorities are clearly different than mine and I applaud you for trying to keep it real.


Quite honestly, although we were delighted to bring you to town, as a mother myself, I was surprised that you've hit the road to promote your two books, given all that's going on and the responsibilities you have with eight children, all 8 years old or younger. You have a full plate, and it must be a struggle to balance all of the demands on your time and in your life. You obviously don't wish to compromise on your own needs either.

At our program, you spoke at length about your adorable kids - twins and the sextuplets (I recall hearing you say you didn't like the word sextuplets and prefer referring to them as multiples). Although you have a beautiful family, it can't be a piece of cake raising such a large brood! You said it yourself: Nothing has come easy for you; you and your husband, Jon, have struggled for everything. Although I'm not a regular viewer of your show, I've heard from many moms that your show's popularity is due to the fact that "ordinary moms" relate to you and feel that if you can swing it, so can they.

Your remarks at our presentation offered several lessons for the 800 (mostly) moms who came to hear you. You had some great insights, which I've classified into the Four Gs, or four lessons that have guided you since the birth of your set of six children.

The Lesson of Gratefulness

The first lesson you've learned raising eight kids is that parents should never take for granted all of the wonderful things that we have. Gratefulness is indeed important and, as a parenting tool, it's even more relevant. Children learn this attitude of gratitude from their parents.

Gratefulness gives rise to happiness and focuses on the fullness of life. Without gratefulness, we can't appreciate the small and large wonders our children provide. Without gratefulness, we can't value the truly remarkable blessings they bring us, even when we're tearing our hair out! Without gratitude, our mind focuses on the next thing on the list that needs to get done, rather than being mindful and grateful of the here and now. The Lesson of Gratefulness is crucial to living a rewarding life. As Albert Einstein observed, "There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle." Yes, it can always be better, but it can always be worse, too. Much worse.

The Lesson of Giving

Before your children, you characterized yourself as being self-absorbed. You indicated you were never one to look beyond the needs of your own family or yourself and help others. With so many people helping you during that first year after the birth of your multiples, you began to appreciate the importance of giving to and sharing with those who had less.

However, I found your comments about giving and generosity a little self-serving. I was a little put off by your insight that when you give, you are rewarded in turn. In theory, I support this notion, but the rewards can be far less material than you suggested, Kate. You explained how when you give, you almost always get something tangible back in return, confirming to you that your gift was the right thing to do. To be honest, your story of writing a check to a nearby family who had some major struggles in their life only to receive, almost serendipitously, an anonymous gift card for the exact amount was disheartening to me.

I'd like to believe that the spirit of giving inherently suggests you won't necessarily get back anything in return. That's the whole point of generosity - giving for the sake of giving. What you get back is the intrinsic satisfaction of helping others. Still, the Lesson of Giving is an important one for all parents. True generosity springs from compassion. As the Dalai Lama once said, "Love and compassion are necessities, not luxuries. Without them, humanity cannot survive."

The Lesson of Getting Through

Next, you shared with us the Lesson of Getting Through - the lesson of "the grind." You noted how mundane and repetitive a parent's job is. "Moms get up, make breakfast, feed breakfast, clean up breakfast, then make lunch, feed lunch, clean up lunch ... and so on and so on." You mentioned how it sometimes feels like a pointless job, but it's an important one and parents shouldn't lose their focus or give up.

Kate, you are probably an expert on the repetition of parenting! One diaper after the next, one meal after another, one potty training followed by a second, over and over again. Of course, the endless litany of chores, responsibilities and tasks scream of being a mom or dad. I liked how you spoke of this aspect of mothering your kids, but I would have enjoyed hearing more about the fruits of your efforts. Think about it - we do this not because it's fun or easy but because there's purpose behind it. It's not pointless or futile, and the rewards are vast.

Rather than shuddering at the monotony of parenting, I suggest parents appreciate that children often thrive and grow into independent, secure adults when surrounded by routines, schedules and security. Without some order and, yes, a lot of repetition, our lives can become governed by chaos, clutter and ambiguity. The burdens - and ordinariness - of parenting also offer lessons in patience and perseverance. As a parenting coach, I advise parents to focus less on the arduousness of the work and more on the outcomes. Perhaps St. Thomas More said it best: "The ordinary acts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest."

The Lesson of Guiltlessness

Another key learning that you shared with us, Kate, is that guilt has no place in parenting. The Lesson of Guiltlessness is a good one, because too often parents feel guilty in how they raise their children. "Continue what you're doing," you offered the audience. "And never be sorry for a job well done."

You spoke about how "mommy guilt" can get to you. It must be hard for you, especially now that you're touring around the country. You acknowledged you don't get enough time to snuggle with each of the children and that, being so goal driven, it's hard for you to be "in the moment" with your kids. Your advice to "leave it alone - there's always tomorrow" is sound. Parenting has the unique capability of making parents feel guilty. You are quite right when you suggest parents should rid themselves of guilt. It's destructive and places the focus on perfection. Being a parent is a continuous process that requires making some mistakes in order to learn, improve and grow.

Graciousness, The Lesson You Left Out

I think, however, you forgot one very important lesson that is also a crucial skill for parents, Kate. Graciousness is a critical skill and attribute for all parents. You failed to show any graciousness in your appearance last week. I did not find you to be a particularly kind, warm or nice person. You were unfriendly and actually quite aloof and rude to your hosts and sponsors. There were many people in the audience who perceived a sense of snootiness as well. I know because they came up to me afterward and mentioned it.

I often tell parents that we model the way for our kids. The lesson of graciousness captures traits of kindness and generosity of spirit, both important in building character in our children. Graciousness is more than social etiquette; it's the quality of being pleasant, thoughtful and kind-hearted. As parents, when we act graciously, we demonstrate to our children that we value this trait and want to see it in them. The way to raise a kind and gracious child is to be a kind and gracious person.

Kate, I know you are going through a difficult time, as rumors abound about your marriage and personal life. Unfortunately, when you decided to share your life with a huge viewing audience, you gave away many of your rights to claim privacy. You clearly enjoy several benefits and perks of a celebrity lifestyle. This was clear in your new "look," sporting a lovely new hairstyle and arms that rival Michelle Obama's. But that doesn't mean that you need to be haughty or carry an air of self-privilege at the expense of others. Otherwise, you risk being seen as an opportunistic "Octo-mom" looking for fame and glory. Remember that parents said they like you specifically because they relate to you as the "mom next door" and not as a self-important starlet.

Kate, you are entitled to have it all. I wish you and your precious family much success in the journey ahead. You deserve a wonderful and enriching life. But please understand that you can't demand the accoutrements of a celebrity life without also knowing there is a downside: namely, losing some of your freedom and privacy. As you continue to be in the public eye, don't lose sight of this thought: Wherever you go, whatever you do, walk with kindness, compassion and gratitude for others as well as yourself and know that you model the way, not only for your children, but for parents everywhere. That is the most important message we can pass on to others.


Alyssa Martina

Metro Parent publisher and president and certified parenting coach

Alyssa Martina is founder, president and publisher of Metro Parent Magazine and one of Metro Detroit's

Jane   May 26th, 2009 12:10 pm ET


Here is a suggestion: since you love her so much, you could make a statute out of her so you can talk to her every day. Really! That massive!!!!

These people are clearly in this for the money...if you are so concerned about your children...stay home...take care of them...turn off the cameras...make a living like the rest of us...

Emma   August 25th, 2009 9:14 pm ET


I was just wondering if you are considering continuing the show. If so, how long, and do you think this will effect the kids?


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