No Sympathy for Jon and Kate

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I admit, I’ve watched Jon and Kate Plus 8 and enjoyed it. Not regularly, but the episodes that I have watched left me smiling. They have my utmost respect because already just watching three kids of my own is crazy enough! I cannot imagine being in their shoes. They are the Super Parents of the decade.

The Gosselins do have my respect as parents. However, my sympathy, they don’t. It’s great that they want to show the world that they’re a normal family and that it is possible to raise that many kids in this day and age. But, why? Why subject their kids to such a public life?  Didn’t they stop to think before signing the contract that they’d be throwing themselves and their family to the wolves to be devoured? Did Jon and Kate really believe that they’d be immune to the curse of celebrity scandal and gossip? As a reality tv show, they’re entire lives are put under a microscope with every move being examined. Their skeletons in the closet are bound to come out. And that is exactly what happened.

What does the world expect from Jon and Kate, these two people who are utterly human? Yes, Kate may be bossy, demanding, and outspoken. And yes, Jon may have cheated on his wife. But tell me, what typical dysfunctional family doesn’t have these problems? Jon and Kate Gosselin are human. Raising eight kids is difficult enough and can send any parent to the brink of breakdowns and temptation to run away. Then add cameras in their faces twenty-four hours a day. How could that not drive anyone insane?

The ironic part of all is that the show has been on for several years now. And since its first season when the Gosselins looked like the picture-perfect family, how many times have they graced the cover of virtually every tabloid magazine? It’s only been since all the scandal and rumors that Jon and Kate have become full-blown celebrities. In actuality, their fifteen minutes have just begun. Reality tv has a way of making people famous. However, most times that fame takes a turn for the worst, as in the Gosselins’ case.

Of course, in the end, the children are the ones who will suffer. The most recent cover of one tabloid magazine mentioned about splitting up the kids. The Gosselin kids are special – twins and sextuplets. How can they be torn apart? Jon and Kate will be able to start their lives over separately if they divorced. But the kids will be the ones to suffer their parents’ consequences for displaying their lives to the world. These innocent little children didn’t ask to be on a reality show. They had no choice. What’s happening right now is their parents’ war, but they are dragged into it because it has turned into a public affair.

As parents, we have to make many, many choices. A lot of them will be difficult ones. Jon and Kate had a choice. For me, no amount of money in the world would get me to display my life and my family’s life to the public. Some people want fame and fortune; others don’t. Jon and Kate are not bad parents. They are just as normal as the rest of us. But was their choice to participate in a reality show a good one? Well, look at their lives now. It is sad because they are good people and America loved them. Only time will tell what happens to this once adored couple and their beautiful children.  

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