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September 16th, 2010 by Dr. Phil

Mommy Meanest?

blog9039_1In all the years I’ve been doing this show, I’ve never seen an audience react as strongly as during the taping of “Mommy Confessions.” I happened to look around the studio and noticed my wife, Robin, in tears. The video of a child’s sobs as he’s forced to stand in a cold shower as punishment literally took over the stage. It brought up emotions so powerful, I don’t know that there was a dry eye in the building. In fact, Robin told me that it was the first time she ever wanted to get up and walk out.

Jessica, a mother of six, sent me that shocking video. She admits to having difficulty disciplining her adopted 7-year-old son, Kristoff, and says that she’s tried other methods, but nothing works. Before you judge too harshly, remember that this 35-year-old, college-educated mom came to the Dr. Phil show for help and guidance. For Jessica, the cold shower — along with other punishments, such as pouring hot sauce in the young boy’s mouth — is a last resort to scare her son into behaving.

I want to make one thing clear: the video you see was not taped by the Dr. Phil show. Had it been, we would’ve intervened immediately. Jessica’s 10-year-old daughter shot the video, and Jessica sent it in as a desperate cry for help. Here’s what I want you to think about as you watch this episode: There are more mothers out there like Jessica than you think. In fact, in a recent study about anger, the University of Toronto found that among 1,800 Americans, moms with young kids are the angriest.

blog9039_2You may call women like this “Mommy Meanest,” and think only bad moms allow their emotions to get out of control when disciplining their kids. But it was brave of Jessica to show us her true colors, and admit to how angry and overwhelmed she feels, and to show us exactly who pays the price. Like so many mothers, her day begins at the crack of dawn and is spent getting all six kids ready for school and out the door. She says she only has two hours to finish the household chores — laundry, bills, cleaning. By the end of the day, she admits that she’s exhausted and quick tempered, and says Kristoff’s behavior pushes her to the edge.

I’m sure many of you have had days when you’re at the end of your rope with your kids. You may even have a moment or two where you’ve snapped at your children that you wish you could take back. I’d like to hear from you. What parenting mistakes have you made? Or, on the other hand, what did you do to control yourself and defuse the situation? Do you think it’s possible for a mom like Jessica to change? This is an important conversation we need to have.

Would love to hear your thoughts.

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564 Responses to “Mommy Meanest?”

  1. Josie says:

    Well, i just watched the show yesterday. Every shows of Dr. Phil is being recorded. I am a home stayed mom but busy all the time. Yesterday, finally i skipped some shows and tried to look this shows thats really bothers me. I asked my 10 yrs old daughter and 6 yrs old son to watch the show with me. All of us are crying. My daughter even says that, what if they do it to her as well. And even my 6 yrs old said the same thing too! This shows, made me realize that if a mother cant protect their kids who will. I dont agree with all the stuff that she did. My son got yellow and orange too! But you know what, everybody has a bad day! I always talk to both of my children. I always explain of what gonna happen if they keep on this bad day situation. Communications, spending quality time and loving them and assuring them that you are there for them. Until now , while i am typing this comment, i am still crying. I was just in the shower awhile ago and tried to turn on the cold shower for a little bit and my gosh i cant stay with even one minute, and how much more with that 7 yrs old. That WOMAN should go for a counselling and Kristoff should be taken out of her house as soon as possible because Kristoff dont deserve her to be her mother. She is a monster. She didnt even have any facial reaction when the video is on. I had to put it to mute when they played it. and keep hugging my son. I dont want to watch the show but i just want to watch it with my kids so that they realize that there are a lot of people in this world that can hurt them. In this shows, my kids are more concious now of what they are doing. and becomes a joke that when they start arguing, i said to them, that i will call the WOMAN to pick them up and they behave. I hope the show helps every single person that abuses kids to realize that it is not fair to the kids to be treated that way. Kids are the future of our country. I wish Dr. Phil all the best and continue of fighting the abuse and bullying. GO GO DR. Phil.

  2. Joan Adams says:

    I am not saying that I perfect as a parent. I was a single parent of three kids and I have never done that. There is just no excuse for it at all. On the other hand it is extremely hard to get help for yourself to STOP doing these things. There is just no help when it comes to this situation of a parent getting too mad or upset at you kids and abusing them. I hope she got the help she needed to stop this. One word of advice to all. I’m a mother of four for 26 years. The calmer you are with your kids the calmer they are. I used to scream and yell ( not good I know ). The day I stopped is the day they stopped behaving badly. Calm assertive is the way to go. Walk away when you get too mad. Take a time out for yourself. Think and start again. Take a breath. Go have that cigarette ( I know another bad, but hey it’s better than hitting or saying something wrong. And still better than a drink or drugs. Talk to a friend in my case my Mom was the best for me. And one more thing you would not want your kids to hit or abuse their kids. It will continue on to your grandiose if you don’t stop. That’s what made me calm down, just the thought of it. Even though they were not here at the time. Think about it.

  3. Jim Ferrell says:

    Does your host have kids?

  4. iris combs says:

    I have a 4 yrs old daughtar that makes me so mad at time, I think it’s because she’s the only child and wants alot of attention from me, I am a single parent but I do have a booyfriend in my life thats been here for about 2 and a half years now. my daughtar was living with my parents 2 years of her early life because i was in a abusive relationship and i had to get away, so i moved away for awhile and left my child with my parent to get myself back together while doing that i met a guy thats been here for me since i met him. Now we are closer then ever as a family, she is now staying with me and has been for around 2 years, she’s so stubburn but what childs not, I sometimes get really mad when she’s being bad but I always catch myself, because i feel like even though I do have a boyfriend and he’s in both of our lives, its still me and her and thats how its going to always be with my child and i. parents are not perfect but dont blame your mistakes on your childs actions and dont treat the child like there just some animal or something. there are so many families out there wanting children but some women who where blessed to have them treat them like trash and its not right. god bless

  5. Barbara West says:

    I didn’t watch this show because the previews were enough for me to see that it wasn’t something I could manage.
    I’ve tried to watch a few clips but what I REALLY want to know..is this child in the hands of anyone now who cares about what has been happening to him?How was this woman able to adopt him or are ALL her children adopted?

  6. Tina says:

    oh my gosh…how can people do something like that? Does she have no heart or did actually God created her without a heart? I get totally shocked! I’m pissed at how she can ever think of doing something like that? I watched your show Dr phil, I live in Norway, im a girl just 18 years old, I am a young girl, but I had never found to treat my baby that way, and im fully shocked at what I saw. I feel so sorry for the little boy who actually had to live with that family. Have you contacted the child welfare? What happens to the boy? I have gotten a glimpse of that the world is actually not ful of good people. There are as many sick people that is bad people, as if it’s good. How could they let the family adopt that little boy? I love your shows, Dr Phil, although it was the sickest thing I’ve ever seen and im a big fan of your! I hope they will take the boy away form her, she made me sick!

  7. BILL V says:

    I am 6 FT 2IN US Soldier, I am quite assuming to witness when “I do my job” however I just watched the clip of that little boy and his so call caretaker mother and cried with anger and rage when I witnessed her obvious abuse of that little child.

    She says she’s tired but she can take the time to physically to mentally torture this 3 year old. As we say in the military that IS the WRONG ANSWER- She is a sadist, possibly passive aggressive, one moment she hugs you then she tortures you, that’s classic.

    Dr Phil, she is lucky I was not sitting in that audience, that is all I will say. The entire country would have seen my rage, enough said. She needs to experience the treatment she gives that child personally to fully appreciate what he “almost” feels when he has terror in his heart. The reason I say almost is this is all he knows of the world since he is so young, All he knows is fear and pain, YES PAIN. Hot sauce, cold showers, in government terms is IS torture and against the law. WTF is wrong with this person. sorry I am just so angry no one was there to protect this defenseless little boy, I don’t care what he did at school HE IS ONLY THREE, he is a baby!

    God I could go on, please get those kids out of there before he turns out to be a
    mass murderer, abuser himself OR she just kills him.

    Dr Phil if you were wondering, yes she almost reminds me of my mother without the alcohol-

    Bill V

  8. Dave says:

    Funny thing is up until Dr. Spock et. al. this sort of discipline was though OK. Mom’s routinely washed their kids mouths out with soap. Dad’s gave their kids the swift back of their hand. My bet is that she had parents like that and in frustration she reacted the way her parent’s trained her to react.

    My Dad told me that the teachers used to smack kids with their yard sticks and the strap was used quite often. In my area the strap was used for corporal punishment in the school system up until the late 1970’s. My grandmother tells me that routine punishment back in her childhood was to “cut a switch” so that her Dad could give her a few smacks with it.

    The thing is violence begets violence. When you spank, smack or yell (yes even yell) at your child it teaches them how to react when they become an adult. A calm non violent approach show your child that you are in control of your emotions. It show them that there are better ways to deal with problems other than making them endure physical or emotional pain.

  9. I saw the video and I can’t stop my tears. I’m deeply shocked i’m from Tunisia. I have children, I am 37 years old.I can’t believe that a mom could do all horrors to her child! It’s indeed not her own child and it explains all things. I just want to know if legal measurement were taken in help the child? I really need the answer!!

  10. Amalina Anuar says:

    I just have to stop playing the video when i heard the son cry..you are torturing your own son my goodness..how can you do this to your son??although he is your adopted son but you shouldn’t do this kind of thing and stuff alike to your son. to all mothers out there please and please take good care of your children. he is just a lil kid growned up lied and he is innocent and yet it is too much to punished him in such that way. this is totally wrong way to teach your children. it is so mean, enough said.

  11. Cor says:

    I have not seen the show because I live in the Netherlands
    But when I read the stories …. I get dizzy.. Shocked by what happened in this world.
    Dr. Phil help them please.

    Sorry for my bad english

    Sincerely Cor Heeren

  12. Hello cominicacion desire to achieve infinitely Mr. Jessica, I have many opportunities to help in his new life with her son, as the Employee tecncas for me to rebuild a damaged relationship that way, work with excellent results, it has nothing to do money or interest of any kind other than an immense desire to help.
    I would like to be friends, do not think it a bad mother, I think we accomplished a lot and so will get their reward as a mother and as a person, there are worst but hope to do better too, for this reason I ask you at least give me message, from my heart Thanks
    “sorry for the grammatical errors, do not speak English, but I manage”

    Maria Elena Casanova

  13. Jamie says:

    I watched the video and I am literally shaking. She is a very disturbed person. This child needs to be removed from the home immediately, do not wait for Jessica to get help. This child deserves better, a lot better. We need a follow-up. We need to know that this child is safe and what is being done. Will Jessica be charged? Is this child receiving help? Who can we contact to make sure that this child will not get lost in the paperwork…someone has to be his angel. Dr. Phil, is this child safe? How do you know for sure?

  14. Karoline says:

    I totally agree with you Jamie, I’m in shock. I really need to know that Kristoff is safe now!!!

  15. Thierry L. says:

    I’m not American, I am French.
    I stumble upon this video, then on this site. This shocked me. I do not know anything of this woman, but the fact that she is tired or that it is difficult does not excuse what she did. we do not swallow strange things to a child to punish him, we do not leave under a cold shower. The end of the video is simply unbearable. I do not know how things happen in your country but in France, this woman would answer for his actions in court. It is simply outrageous! And to see people’s reaction on set, I’m not the only one to think. For information, in France, it was not so long ago, a child who has suffered this kind of things have been taken to hospital.

  16. Rhonda L. says:

    I agree with Bill V. the soldier. He took the words right out of my mouth. The Mom seemed so cold and uncaring. Tired would look like laying on the couch. Not the endless torture that this child has to endure. The emotionless look on her face reminded me of someone who has mental issues. Was she checked? Let’s hope and pray that she gets the help she needs or gives the kids up. Not everyone is called to be a parent. People can change but, it didn’t even look like she was a bit concerned. The first step is to know “hey I screwed up big time I will never do that again!!!” And yes, I was raised by my grandparents because my mother was also like this Mom without the drugs. Thank God for my grandparents!

  17. Rhonda L. says:


  18. Norma L says:

    I saw the previews the day prior the show, I told my husband that I did not wanted to watch that. We have 3 little girls and I am completly against any type of child abuse. I can’t handle watching a child suffering.

  19. I am a 26 year old mother of 2 little girls. One is 5 and my youngest will be 3 Christmas Eve. These 7 words ring through my head constantly. And that is ”You can’t change what you don’t acknowledge.” And this show was a HUGE eye opener. I have reached my breaking point to where nothing works! Spanking, raising my voice, time outs…etc. I have used hot sauce before on my children. Not every time though, only when things got really bad. I NEVER went to the extent of making them swish it in their mouths. But I admit I have used hot sauce for discipline. As far as a cold shower… I have done that too. My oldestused to have out-of-control tantrums. The difference is I used it to snap her back to reality…I never got down and told her I was doing it. I would just hold her in the cold shower for a few seconds to shock her back. It worked the first few times. As she got older, I figured there were other ways. My youngest has gotten hot sauce twice and a cold once. I have to say that I havnt done that for at least 6+ months. I am happy to say I have changed my discipline techniques. But I notice I still yell and spank. Theres anger coming from somewhere…I just don’t know where. Dr. Phil, thank you for your show. I have come to accept that this was wrong and yes, I have damaged my kids. I have also acknowleged it so I can change it. Thank you again! God Bless.

  20. A Dad says:

    There is no love there. All I see is rage, and barely contained, at that.

    I physically disciplined my child when she was younger, but only when she did something likely to endanger herself or others. (Running out into the street comes to mind). A firm swat on the behind, and a stern “NO. You mustn’t run into the street. If you get hit by a car, you will most likely be very badly hurt or even killed. Do you understand?”

    Hugs and soothing words always followed immediately after, and a further clarification/assurance of understanding as well. Tears from both of us, at times. FWIW, she has grown into a wonderfully polite, thoughful, and self-disciplined child.

    I feel awful for that little boy…that’s not parenting.

  21. Scentsy says:

    I don’t agree nor condone this method of discipline, and it is difficult to understand how someone could jump to these drastic measures. I also think this kind of behavior only creates a more vicious cycle. Perhaps if this parent had a chance to regroup and take care of herself, she would be in a better position to take care of her family. If there is something more deep rooted going on, I hope, especially for the sake of these kids, she will consider getting help.

  22. Ronna Dalton says:

    I watched this show & I was so mad at Jessica for discipling her little boy the way she did that it made me start crying! Does she not realize that her son is a gift from the Lord? Apparently she doesn’t feel like he is a gift!! When she gets angry with him she first needs to remove herself from the scene, take a few deep breaths, and then go back to her son. If he continues with that behavior she needs to try and explain to him why it is not acceptable for him to act that way, but that she does love him very much! You know if he heard her declare her love for him then he might not act that way! Sometime just a simple “I love you” is all that children need to hear! Thank you for letting me share my comment!

  23. Shari says:

    SIX children, hello??? What in the world is this woman doing with SIX children??? She clearly cannot deal with so many children and should give at least poor Kristoff up to a family where he will be LOVED and helped to HEAL from what Jessica has done to him :(

    I hope Jessica is in intensive counseling along with her 6 children and husband also getting serious help because this family is broken. fwiw, Jessica may have been horribly abused as a child herself, dissociating the memories to survive … but, memories never die. They get stronger as time goes on and can leave people doing outrageous things like Jessica is doing. Which is NO EXCUSE EVER but can help us make sense of Jessica’s insane behavior.

  24. Mary Kohn says:

    Regarding “Mommie Meanest” – OMGosh, this really struck a nerve with me. I was given up for adoption at 4 years of age. My biological mother kept me in a basement by myself without family interaction plus a lot of physical abuse. My paternal aunt was the one that discovered this and turned my mother into the authorities. My dad was in the military and wasn’t home much and remember he tried to protect me as best he could when he was home. I was the 2nd eldest of 4 children. My brother was a year older than me and my younger sister was just a baby. I remember a lot of the abuse from my mother. I was the only sibling taken from the home. Unfortunately, the abuse only continued when I was adopted at age 6. I was still sucking my thumb and my adoptive mother would tie my hands to the bed at night. So today I still bite my nails. Whenever she thought I was bad (which was almost every day) she would do drastic things. I remember when she tried to get me to tell the truth she would place me in a tub of scalding hot water and when I was determined to keep from telling her she would do the opposite and place me in a tub of very cold water. When I would finally give in, then she’d beat me. She would make me eat horseradish right from the jar and if I threw it up, I had to re-eat it. If I didn’t like something she made for dinner I would have to sit at the table until I ate it and sometimes it would be 10:00 at night and I’d still be sitting at the table begging her not to make me eat it but all my pleadings got me nowhere. I got my face slapped on a daily basis. She once cut all my hair off and I was humiliated at school. She would make me wear these awful clothes and I would get teased. I had a few friends that felt sorry for me and would bring me a change of clothes but my mother would come to the school and catch me wearing someone else’s clothes and then get beat when I got home. She also abused our animals and when she’d beat our poor poodle, I had thoughts of killing her in her sleep. This kind of abuse happened until I finally moved out after I was 18 1/2 years old. The last straw was when she rubbed my underwear in my face accusing me of having sex with my boyfriend. The more I denied it to her, the meaner she got. She tortured me to my breaking point that day. I hauled off and slapped her across the face, called my boyfriend and asked him to come get me because I couldn’t take another day in that hell hole. I eloped with him to Vegas and we got married. I felt this was my only option out of my desperate situation. I am now 53 years old, on my 3rd marriage and am still regretting not having a childhood to this day. I have scars that will never heal, even after therapy. I’ve been on anti-depressants for years and suffer from severe depression. I hate my life and have very little self esteem. It is amazing how another human being can ruin someone. There’s so much more but you get the gist.

  25. tina says:

    Dearest mary. l am sitting here tonight reading about your cruel and disgusting childhood! it has made me cry and wish l was there for you when you were a child, l cant even imagine what it must have been like ? all l can think of saying is that it wasnt YOUR fault! NONE of it! l take my hat of to u and think u are beautiful just being alive ! well done to u . l hope u have more happiness in your later yrs !IT IS NEVER TOO LATE. take care please luv tina

  26. Penny H. says:

    First of all to Mary Khon, my heart goes out to you ! Now, concerning “Mommy Dearest” – kudos to Bill V & to Shari’s comments.

    I watched this episode, like all others, and found this one to be “messed up.” She should be glad that her daughter took it upon herself to video this so she could rat herself out to Dr. Phil to get help. Otherwise it would have only been a matter of time that she would have gotten busted and it wouldn’t have been pretty!!! Her daughter did her a favor !!!

    To subject this child to the torture she has put on him is depiscable. I wish for ALL of the children that they could be removed from her care in to another family member’s care, and not the fathers either, he seemed clueless, excuses for her behaviour, & just plain out dumb. He may have a degree in his profession but hes dumb as a rock with rearing children.

    As for the friend who recommended this treatment of such to children, God only knows whats going on behind her closed doors as well.

    This is brutal, disgusting, inhumane, and the “mom” does not deserve any of these children. Robin hit the nail on the head when she said that the “mom” herself, lied to this child. Promising the child she would “love” and take care of him and promise him a beautiful life. Ummm Ummm Ummm. Kudos Robin!!! I’ve never been soo angry @ a mother before. To sit there in your own house and watch just “one” time at what this woman did to her child, adopted or not, if I could have come thru the screen w/ the rage & emotions that I had, she wouldn’t have had time to scream for help. She would be promtly introduced to texas pete and frigid showers – combined !!!

    For her to sit on that stage and think that she could actually pull off the part of being the “victim”, was and is SAD!!! Who does she think shes going to fool?! She was so opaque / transparent she was sickening especially with that “I need help, tell me what to do” attitude. Sick, just sick.

    Dr. Phil, as for the show, I am a HUGE FAN of your show. I do hope that you will be able to help these children, one way or another, as I know you will. Idk if theres any help for this mom or dad. I will say one thing that I found to be quite disturbing as well, other viewers may not feel the same, thats cool too, but it was one thing to watch this brutal video once at the beginning & “maybe” once in the middle, but seeing it replay several times, I found it extrememly hard to focus on the show for the drama in the back. Your audience, in house and out is already outraged with her. I found it hard to watch you speak to her and counsel her without getting sidetracked w/ the footage. Just food for thought !!!

    She obviously cannot handle 6 children, why, why, why, did she adopt the last 2?
    May God Bless this child and her other children. Dr. Phil, please do your magic!!!

  27. Arthur Billings says:

    A cold shower? are you kidding me? If I ever got such light punishment when I was young
    I would not have the great memories of my childhood today, and before you read this, you need to know that I am a fine warm adut who raised four children of my own, who today have kids, and we have all survived and are doing well. My dad put me in the corner of the room on my knees, my nose touching where the two walls meet, with pinto beans on the floor for me to kneel on. My dad kinda like in the movie, “A Christmas Story”
    where Peter Billingsly put abar of soap in his mouth for saying the F word, I was made to bite it off and chew it untill he felt it was enough, I couldnt taste anything for over a week.
    Spanking, with a belt, with a bull whip, an extinsion cord, in the dark, hit any place, Mom came in with the camphore to treat the bleeding welps after. We are good friends today, I’m 57 hes 84, I have many fond memories where my dad gave me liberties other kids didnt get, I grew up knowing, Life is all about choices, I just chose to make good ones.

  28. Angela D. says:

    I am a stay at home mother and also home educate my fifth grade son. I also have a daughter in junior high. I have not been a perfect parent, however I was sickened by what I saw. I do dvr Dr. Phil and watch them back later so I am a bit behind on this story. I just wanted to take that little boy home with me. I could love him as if he were my own. My last child died while I was pregnant and I just wonder how some people don’t see the gift of life in children. (It doesn’t matter adopted or not.)
    It was apparent to me that the “mother” didn’t want the child from the begining how she stated she had a connection with his twin in the picture but not him. You would think she wouldn’t have adopted him if she truly didn’t want him.
    Where is the follow up on adoption? I am stunned that this poor boy was put up for adoption maybe from a mother thinking he would have a better life in America, only to come here to be abused.
    I don’t cry often, but this show had me there. I was rasied in abuse and it’s not fair. Who can speak for the child if someone doesn’t step in? I hope she gets help, but I think all the children should be removed immediately from her care. I wondered too, if they are all adopted or just the boys?

  29. Miryam says:

    For all the moms who are being abusive with their child, be sure that children never forget the pain they had to deal with. I’m so frustrated against moms who mistreat their child like that… I mean, what’s the point of having a child if you’re not able to treat him properly and respectfuly? This mom has a heart of stone and doesn’t deserve to have a child. May God bless this poor child. I hope that she will pay for what she did. I was raised in abuse since my parents got divorced. Since the age of 12, I lived mainly with my mom and my younger brother. She was being mentally, emotionnally and sometimes, physically abusive with me. I can tell you that words can hurt as much as physical violence. I was doing the best as I could to be nice and kind with her, but she ALWAYS find something wrong with me. I was doing many tasks for her, like doing her laundry, washing her new boyfriend Calvin Klein boxers..while she was simply sitting on the couch and reading the newspapers. It was NEVER enough. Never. She was never satisfied. When I was trying to talk to her, instead of listening to me, she was searching some mistakes in my sentences! When I was nominated for a gala at my school, I’ve put on her sweater (it made a dress for me) and her necklace and I could see the anger and the jalousy in her eyes while she was looking at me. Also, she was always comparating me with her friend’s kids and with my cousins. She told me that it was normal that I don’t have many friends, because I’m too egocentric, I only think about myself and I don’t have anything interesting to say, I have no life, etc. She kept telling me things like that, and I was crying everyday. I’ve tried to talk to her about how I feel, she told me that I was playing the victim. One day, when I was 16, she was being physically abusive with me, I couldn’t take it anymore, so I called my dad to go live with him. She didn’t think I was able to do a such thing. This is the hardest decision I’ve made in my life. It broke her heart and mine too. But it was for my mental health. I was crying everyday and I was always depressed. My message is also for all the people who have to deal with an abusive relationship like that. You have to think for YOURSELF and for YOUR health before anything else. If you don’t feel good in your relationship with your mom or with anyone else, you have to do something to make things move on. Don’t stay alone.

    P.S:Sorry for my english, it’s not my first language

  30. Asem says:

    I have never commented on any of your shows before, but on this one I couldn’t keep the silence. I know it is a bit too late to comment since the show was aired in Nov 2010. But in the country I am from (Kazakhstan-former Soviet Union republic) the episode was shown only this week on prime national television as a main topic in all the evening News. I was already shocked enough from what they showed in the news, but I still went on line and searched for it more on youtube. And I just could not hold back my emotions. I am very disguised by the actions of that self-proclaimed Mom. And the fact that made me even more angry was that this kid was from a Russian orphanage, and believe me orphanages in Russia, Kazakhstan or in any other former soviet union republics are horrible and presence in those places is abusive and traumatic enough already. The orphanages are under funded by the governments so there isn`t any psychological help provided to those kids. And even good quality and well nutritioned food is a luxury itself. Most of these kids are physically and emotionally abused in those foster homes. And the fact that this boy has lived only short 7 years until now, but had already experienced so much stress and pain and unfairness makes these story even more devastating. I just hope that drastic actions were taken towards this woman and this kid is in the safe environment right now. I wish this boy not to lose faith in good people, in ability to love and care. I am praying to God for this child to give him very loving and affectionate parents, who would love, nurture and pamper him. I am praying for this child to experience parental love and care in the very very very near future.

  31. chicagoannie says:

    2-1-2011 The View show just reported that the mother is in trouble with the authorities for child abuse.

    I sure wish Dr. Phil would update us on little Kristoff. I am still thinking about that child months after I could not sit through the show that featured his abuse.

  32. Sylvia Smith says:

    Where does one begin. I watched the first show and the follow-up. I’m appalled that this child, and all of the children weren’t removed from that home. I don’t think she got it. I don’t understand why she adopted 2 special needs children with overwhelming problems, including not knowing the language, and expected them to toe the line. I am familiar with what Dr. Phil called saucing. It’s inexcusable. However, it’s usually shaking a drop or two of hot sauce into the child’s mouth. Not filling the mouth with the hot liquid and requiring the child to hold it. No matter how many experts were consulted, they were wrong. It only takes a few minutes of research to determine that this amount of the burning liquid, held in the mouth for a sustained time, can damage the mouth, throat, esophagus, and entire digestive system. Dr. Phil said she needed help, not punishment. Ironic. That’s what the child needed. My heart cries for that child every day. He would be better off in an institution than with that hateful, sick excuse for a mother.

  33. Karina says:

    I am a mother of four children, I had my first when I was 19. My husband and I have very little support or help with our children, we are pretty much all we have. I am not perfect, neither is my husband. I get tired, frustrated…our house is noisy, busy, chaotic, crazy. But, never, ever for a second would I ever touch our children in anger or rage. I am in Australia and I just saw this episode and Dr Phil, I cried so hard. I have never felt so angry or upset. I actually can’t wait for my kids to get home from school this afternoon so I can hug them and remind them of how much I love them and how lucky I am to have them. I can’t believe someone could put hot sauce into a child’s mouth and put them in a shower…he is a little boy. At my 5 year old son’s school, they have a card system too. He was a warning off getting one yesterday because a boy in his class annoyed him and he jabbed him in the arm with his finger…you don’t solve a problem or bad behaviour by stripping a child of their dignity and hurting them physically and mentally with torture. I talked to our boy last night on how if he is having trouble with someone he needs to tell the teacher and not hurt other people.
    I actually feel a little traumatised by what I saw on your show with Kristoff. I felt sick to the stomach. I know this lady needs help and I hope she is getting it, but this child deserves to be loved and he deserves to feel safe. I forgive her but I am sorry I just don’t think she should be allowed to adopt children. What about the millions of families who can’t have children, who want desperately to have children and who are on waiting lists to adopt and provide safe, loving and stable homes to children? Why should they miss out on giving Kristoff and his brother the love and childhood they deserve and this Jessica gets the chance and ruins this kid’s life!
    Please protect this boy Dr Phil, don’t let her hurt him again, I am begging you!
    I know you will, but I am just so disturbed by this story and I just could bare to see him hurt like that again.
    Tired, exhausted, whatever…never an excuse to hurt a kid!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  34. Filbert says:

    I am not a parent but I cannot believe how outrageous this mother is. I get that she has 6 children and is probably very stressed out at home. However, that is NOT an excuse for her to abuse her child like that. This is just taking the cliche “spare the rod and spoil the child” way too far. She is out of control and out of line. I have watched the show and when I saw that she showed no remorse and even raised her eyebrows at what some of the audience was telling her, it was obvious that she still felt that what she was doing was well justified. Frankly, that is so sad. A person who can’t even admits her own shortcomings. I firmly believe that to gain the trust and respect of others you have to admit to your own mistakes and find ways to make up for those mistakes and shortcomings. It is human to err but Cicero once said, “Any man can make mistakes, but only an idiot persists in his error.” I sincerely hope that this mother realises that what she has done is wrong on many levels. I am against corporal punishment in any shape or form and I don’t believe in putting any one down for any mistake that they make, let alone a child. John Wooden said, “The true test of a man’s character is what he does when no one is watching.” Obviously, this speaks volumes about what I think of the mother. I cannot believe how outrageous this woman’s actions are. I would be very surprised if she isn’t locked up for what she has done.

  35. Leonard says:

    This show revealed what is our society today. How many people are suffering right there. We should understand why we have a lot of violence in the street!
    That child is already desturoyed, but her mother too. It could be easy to condemn, to blame her, but we should stop a little bit and ask ourself why
    is she having such behavior? She is not ok. She needs a big help. And I hope the child is already out of that house.

  36. Laura says:

    I currently am about to marry an adult-child that was horridly abused. My fiancee was raised in a motorcycle gang, tortured physically, emotionally, psychologically, and other ways. He grew up to be a murderer on the border of Texas…so he perpetrated the same abuse on foreigners trying to cross the border!
    Today, he has nightmares, night terrors in which he screams in his sleep, fights invisible enemies, and has deep depression issues as an adult.
    I can tell you from being one who has had to live with the adult children that were abused, it takes YEARS to help them heal from the effects and sometimes, even years don’t help!
    The government, the towns, the cities, individuals need to start STEPPING IN! Children need to be REMOVED from homes of abuse, no questions asked, and never placed back in them for the rest of their lives! There are too many situations in which children’s cries are not heard and they are killed…by their own parents sometimes! Something is so wrong with this picture. We are said to live in the “land of the free, home of the brave” Who can be FREE while being tortured in their own home that is supposed to be a SAFE place? Who can be BRAVE when hands, voices, weapons are coming at you daily? Who are we kidding? America needs to WAKE UP and TAKE ACTION!
    Get this mormon lady some serious therapy and FAST! Take the child out of the home until you are sure things will be ok CONSISTENTLY. DO NOT LEAVE THIS WOMAN ALONE WITH CHILDREN! Have the children report on the lady’s behavior DAILY to someone until that child becomes a healthy, balanced adult! Give kids a chance!

  37. Bud Durham says:

    That Mother should lose custody of that little boy, and she should be jailed for child abuse….No Question about it!!!!!!!!!

  38. Sherry says:

    I am watching your show now about meanest mommies and I got goosebumps watching the show. I would like to know how that woman got custody of the little boys in the first place? The adoption agency must not check the adopting parents out got. When I saw what she was putting that little boy through I wanted to crawl through my television and give her a taste of her own medicine. I hope she has done what she said she would do and I hope that the children were removed until she got the help she needs.


    My step-daughter was a victim of abuse in april of 2011. Her abuse was being duct taped over her eyes, nose, and mouth. Then bound by the ankles and feet. Then, The coldest water possible was put on her until she became unconsious. Shortley after that, she was prounounced dead. The hospital tried to revive her for 3 hours. After being prounounced dead, the coroner came down to do her autopsy and noticed the blanket was rising and falling. My step daughter had brought herself back to life. This abuse happened by the hands of her mother who just set her under a cold shower just like this women on your show that aired in november of 2011. My daughter is now in a persistant vegatative state. She has very little brain activivity. She can not eat, drink, move, play, or do anything for herself. She is 100% dependant on somebody for the rest of her life now. The mother is now in jail, and that is where this women on your show should be sitting. No matter how much help she has gotton or therapy she has gone through, nothing will reverse the damage she has mentally caused her children. I am frightened for thier life, considering my daughters life got stole in the same exact way.

  40. cindy says:

    This lady needs to be trported and that child taken from her. Some one need to make her do hot sauce and cold showers. This made me so angry that I would love to be the one to punish her

  41. cindy says:

    I meant reported’

  42. Jillian says:

    I am a mother of four kids ages 11, 10, 6, and 5. I didn’t get to watch all of the “Mommy confesions” show but after seeing just the clip I knew that I couldn’t watch it. All of my kids are or have been through some trying things, for example oldest daughter was molested, 10 year old son was givin meth by his father, 6 year old is overweight with no apparent reason, and 5 year old is underweight and has a touch of autism, so you can imagine the behavioral issues that they have but I would never ever even come close to thinking of doing to them what Jessica is doing to that little boy. if she is so overwhelmed then why in the world would she adopt another child. I would hope that someone stepped in and either put her in jail or took all of the children away from her. I understand being overwhelmed believe me but I have enough self control that when I feel myself slipping I GO AWAY from my children even if it is to go into another room. What is she thinking, how would she feel if someone was doing those kinds of things to her? I just don’t understand. I think that her actions absolutely constitutes child abuse. Please get them kids out of there, if it was anyone else them kids would already be out of that home. There are plenty of loving nurturing people that would do a better job.

  43. all i have to say she needs not to b a mother i have 4 of my own children 4 not my i would never treat them that way
    my spouse now has raied his 4 children all alone and would never let himself or his new spouse treat his children or hers that way

  44. Jeanne says:

    I am the mother of 3 grown daughters/5 grandbabies and 1 great grandson.
    This was so disturbing to me Dr. Phil. Will you do a re visit and make sure this little boy is okay. Just sickening. I also had no respect for the Grandma. She had to know this was happening. Hopefully the little guy will be able to be helped and live a happy, loving life.
    I hate child abuse and it just seems to be rampant.
    I watched the show last eve and the tears were falling. My oldest daughter is adopted and so it was hard for me to imagine treating a child you want so badly so awful. Thank You for letting me vent. Please do not let this person be like this to this little boy. Jeanne

  45. Michelle says:

    That woman made me physically ill. Although I am not a revengeful person, I wanted nothing more than to pour hot sauce in her mouth and place her in a cold shower – maybe that would give her a wake up call. I found it interesting that she never answered the question about whether or not she was raised in the same way she was raising her children, since her mother was in the audience. She claimed to want help, but by asking Dr. Phil if she needed to “lower the standards bar” for the rest of her children, it’s very obvious she should not be a mother and have all the children removed from her house. I fully expected her to be taken off the show in handcuffs due to child abuse. Does anyone have any updates on this story?

  46. RussianOrphansNeedInterventionNow says:

    Ok, deep breath… I recieved a text yesterday that I needed to watch this show and help this poor mother. I didn’t make it home in time but was able to watch the previews on the website and know first-hand what this mom means by the other punishments were not working. I would love to be able to get the word out to her and anyone else out there that has adopted a child or is raising a child with a traumatic history. Unfortunately they do not respond to traditional disciplines but there is a better way, a peaceful way to regain love and hope and have your family thrive again. In a nutshell but backed by lots of scientific research bad behaviors are caused by fear… children that do not have access to the reasoning portion of thier brain because of neglect are often operating 99% of their life out of thier primal brain which is in a fight or flight mode. It really doesn’t matter how safe the current situation might be they still have implicit memories floating around thier nervous system putting them constantly in a state of panic mode. As a mother to these children you start to feel like you are helpless…like you can’t penetrate through this shell, but stay strong and perservere.. if you look beyond the behavior at that moment and put yourself where they are and try to figure out the fear behind the behavior and calm that fear you would be amazed at how the behaviors will change, your home will change, and love and trust will flourish. Another aspect of a traumatized/neglected child is the brain organization. The foundation of the brain has holes in it. But the brain is maleable and can be reorganized through a type of therapy. It is called nueorodevelopmental reorganization. Although it is hard core committment to the hour a day excercises it is nothing compared to the intensity that everyday brought for my son and I. In only three months his regulatory system has improved dramatically. If you would like more information google it, I am just a mom of a Russian orphan who got to the other side of Reactive Attachment Disorder. And the view from here is beautiful, I promise!!

  47. cynthia vanlake says:

    I watched the episode today (8/15/11). As I began to wtach the utterly disturbing acts by this so called mother, I broke out in tears and coul notimagine the pain, humiliation, and torment this child had to endure. I still am having trouble sleeping tonight, just having the images in my head what the poor child had to endure.
    When my little boy waled in the door as I was watching the show, I continued to hug, kiss and hold him for long period of time. I can not imagine how that mother can feel anything but guilt and pain for what she has caused. As I watched the show I saw none fof that. Se almost looked angry as she was confronted. I saw no remorse or sadness in her eyes. I really hope that action was taken place and the children re constantly over looked by officals tat can possible care the the cild or children in a better manner and safer enviornment. There should be no reason the child services shoul not be involved.

  48. Rebecca A. Brown says:

    I was horrified by this video. I wish I could embrace these abused children. Teachers and other responsible adults should be on the lookout for abuse at all times and be ready to turn it into authorities. What this child did at school may or may not have been even that bad. Teachers be aware when you send these behavior reports home the pain that is inflicted on some children. I hope this woman is in jail. I would like her to endure this abuse and see what it is like. She is raising a child to be very bitter or even more sad to think this treatment is normal. I have seen many children hurt by words but this goes way beyond. I really hope she is in jail. Pity also to the daughter videoing and the other children and shame on any father that would let this happen.

  49. Candace says:

    Why is this child still with this woman? There are many families that would give anything they had to have that child including me. I disagree that she was brave to go on the show. Why would a woman with 4 children adopt an additional 2? and then to complain that her plate is too full? I adopted 2 children from Russia in 1996 (shortly after one of the moratoriums on Russian adoption was lifted) and they just graduated high school this year. While they could be downright rotten at times there is never any excuse for inflicting fear or pain into a child. How is it that these children continue to be adopted by Americans and we hear more and more stories of mistreatment? How is it that a mother of 4 could afford or be approved for an adoptions overseas? How could you think if you already had 4 children that you would have the time and energy needed for 2 more adopted children. It is insane to overlaod yourself and then complain of the overload. It is more insane to think a 7 year old won’t lie. We spent every last nickel we had and then some and went through intense scrutiny to get our boys and have been on our knees thanking God for making it happen every day. If you get pregnant, you have no guarantees(possible birth defects, personality disorders, etc). Why do adoptive parents think their luck would be any different!!!!

    She is dooming the other orphans needing homes and the families here desperate to love them in her attempt to gain attention.

  50. Donna Carmical says:

    This is so disgusting and tryng to justify her behavior is even more disgusting. I don’t care how TIRED she is there is no excuse, people have no right, to treat another human being this way.

    Kids are seen as chattel, they belong to their parents, caretakers, etc. and society does not know how to deal with it. We want to believe these people love their kids and maybe they think they do but the prisons, mental institutions and graveyards are full of human beings that were raised by people that thought they were doing right by their kids. We don’t really care. Social services are overwhelmed and the media is full of stories about how a dead or horribly abused child had been reported and nothing was done. Even if it finally gets to the courts kids are given back because after all don’t these “loving” parents deserve another chance no matter what the screw up.

    What about the rights of these kids? Do they deserve to grow up in an environment where they are not mistreated and subjected to horrible punishments. We somehow expect our children to be perfect, when not one of us is perfect … who’s pouring hot sauce in our mouths or giving us a cold shower for our misdeeds. Disgusting, but we really don’t care just want to act outraged when we read or see it and then we forget about it.

    In terms of exhaustion … ask the thousands of parents who are dealing with watching their child being exposed to the poison, cut and burn treatments as a result of childhood cancer and these people can tell you about exhaustion. These people wouldn’t hurt their kids no matter how exhausted, they spend all their waking hours on their knees praying to God for a healing and they would trade a lie anyday for one less surgery or chemotreatment.

    What do we do? Dr. Phil you’ve got the power, you take it on because society doesn’t know how and will continue to ignore child abuse.

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