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The Gosselin family’s next reality TV project needs to involve intensive family therapy.
Mady and Cara Gosselin appear with their mother, Kate, on the cover of People magazine this week, and the Kate Plus 8 twins, who turn 16 in October, talk about their troubled relationship with their dad, Jon, whom they haven’t seen for several years.
Cara, the older of the two by six minutes, actually took the high road, if there is such a thing in this messy scenario, saying, “I wouldn’t even know what to say about him.” On the other hand, Mady had several things to say about the DJ — and none of them particularly flattering.
“He makes it seem like we’re being kept from him, which is insane,” Mady tells the magazine. “He should maybe spend some time thinking about why we don’t want to see him, and maybe realize that if he ever does want a relationship with us, talking about us on TV is not the way to make that happen. He doesn’t even know us — how can he dare he talk about us?”
While she doesn’t seem to realize that she too is airing their private grievances in public (the very thing that bugs her about her dad), she went on to call her relationship with the Jon and Kate Plus 8 father “toxic.”
“This year I’m going to turn 16. I’m going to be learning to drive, taking the PSATs, thinking about college… so much is going on in my life,” she said. “And the last think I have time for is a toxic relationship.”
Earlier this month, Jon told Entertainment Tonight that he wasn’t on speaking terms with the twins, who stopped coming to his house per his custody arrangement with Kate when they were 12 or 13 years old. Shortly after, Collin, one of the 12-year-old sextuplets, stopped coming as well.
In the People article, Kate also talked about Collin, who wasn’t present at the cover shoot because he’s not living at home with the Pennsylvania-based family. The boy, who has special needs, is now in a residential facility to address his issues.
While Kate wouldn’t share Collin’s diagnosis, she said that he has “educational and social challenges” and that the program is “helping him learn the skills he needs to be the best him he can be.”
While there is a “huge hole” at home with Collin away, “it comforts us to know he’s where he needs to be right now,” Kate said. “I feel like I’ve made an investment in Collin’s future. To know he’s somewhere that’s helping him reach his very best potential has been a relief in many ways.”
Kate added that his brothers, Aaden and Joel, attend special therapy sessions to deal with Collin’s absence. However, she said that Collin has always been on a different path than the rest of the sextuplets. “Over the past year or so, Collin had such a different schedule — different schooling, different therapies, his own room — that his leaving wasn’t like one day he was sharing a room and on the bus with them and suddenly he wasn’t.”
The former nurse said that the process has been very hard on her — especially being on her own. “I’ve felt very alone in this,” she said. “By the same token, it’s not something that has only impacted me or him — our entire family has been impacted. When you have a child with special needs, everyone is affected. The other kids, of course, realize that so much of my time and attention and focus has to be devoted to Collin and trying to get him the help he needs.”
Jon didn’t comment for the People article (or to Yahoo Celebrity), but when we interviewed him in June, he reiterated that he did not have a working relationship with Kate, which was the basis of their problems. As for not seeing some of his kids, he insisted the situation was out of his control because he has no say in who visits him. “If the kids want to come, they come. I love them all, but I am going to focus on the ones that want to come. My hands are tied.”