Couples Therapy Recap: “Fired Up” [Episode 9] By Sandy Malone
Someday, when I rule the world, no singles will be allowed to attend “Couples Therapy.” At least 80 percent of the couples will actually have to be married (or at least engaged) and it will not feature complete assholes like Jon Gosselin so that he can have a TV platform again to air his nastiness about his former wife. You remember her, right? She’s the one who is home with the eight kids while he’s completing his downward spiral.
No, wait! To be fair, there was some good accomplished on “Couples Therapy” last week so we should start there. We’ll come back to Jon and Liz. Even though we all know that’s not who he’s really in therapy with inside his own head.
Once again, for me, the highlight was Whitney and Sada, and not just because they’re actually married and working on their relationship, but because THEY ARE SO REAL. Watching their disagreement in the beginning (a carryover from last week when Sada went to take a shower after a difficult counseling session and told Whit she didn’t need her, and then got mad because her wife didn’t follow her after she told her not to), my husband Bill’s comment about Whitney was “she’s the husband.”
By that, he meant that Sada expected Whitney to read her mind when she was upset, much like many women (myself included), expect their husbands to automatically know what their wives need even when we’re telling them the opposite of what we really actually want. Not at all confusing. Ha! But as a woman, it was fun to watch it unravel and see Whitney’s frustration as her wife got upset with her doing exactly what she told her to do. What I’m curious about is this: do those two women switch up roles, with Whitney sometimes being the unreasonable one, or is she always more like my husband, wondering what the fuck just happened when I tear though like a tornado?
Big kudos to Dr. Jenn Bermann for the coup of bringing in Sada’s dad for a one-on-one counseling session. That was really sad, and sort of uplifting, to watch. It’s like a textbook example of how a father can really screw up his daughter for life by being a bad, abusive or absentee parent when she’s in her formative years. Sada clearly still loves him and wants his approval. Dad seems remorseful and to love his daughter and regret his actions – or he’s a hell of an actor. For Sada’s sake, I hope there’s more counseling ahead for them after the show. Women tend to love their abusers but maybe Sada isn’t completely screwed for life yet.
Speaking of loving your abuser, I’m still totally baffled by Taylor Armstrong and her boyfriend John Bluher’s participation in “Couples Therapy.” The only problem in that relationship is Taylor’s head – and she needs intensive one-one-one, right Dr. Jenn? I am so much more concerned for her daughter Kennedy as I watch this. I do kinda like John – what’s not to like about the guy? He seems all about Taylor and he never says stupid stuff because he never talks. Or production just never shows him talking because of the negligible value-add of his participation.
Did you see that teaser for next week, when he’s handing her some papers like it’s a big surprise or gift? What is that? If her ex weren’t already dead, I’d think lawyer boyfriend had sorted out something regarding custody or whatever. It’s not a book deal. She’s already written a book to “help victims of abuse” – and I just spent an hour researching that (talk about wasting an hour of my life I can never get back) and came to the conclusion that it’s a bunch of shit. First off, I can’t seem to figure out who she gave money to. No need to start your own foundation Taylor, there are plenty of domestic abuse charities already out there accomplishing something who could really use your contribution.
Also, there’s the creepy factor of that book coming out less than seven months after her husband Russell hung himself. Look, I know that publishing houses can turn shit around overnight, but wasn’t she supposed to be a giant emotional mess coping with huge financial issues and taking care of Kennedy in the wake of her daddy’s suicide? Plus filming a television show. How did she do it? I mean, even a ghostwriter needs a LOT of time with the “author” to research the book. I’ll just say it – it doesn’t add up. Does she strike ANYONE as somebody who is organized or motivated enough to have accomplished all that successfully while grieving with her daughter? But I’ve digressed big time from my point… what is John giving her in that sheaf of papers next week? Maybe a pre-nup? Nah, John’s not that tacky.
Was anybody else weirded out when Farrah jumped into bed with Taylor and John to take selfies? I think it further demonstrates that Farrah has absolutely no idea why she’s in therapy and what it’s all about. But I have to say, without her, we wouldn’t have gotten to see that incredibly fucked up exchange with her ex-boyfriend Daniel in the last episode.
I do not think Daniel ever actually looked at Farrah except for when he first walked in and when he said goodbye. Super class move not to shake his hand, Farrah. Sigh. You are hopeless! Look, you couldn’t get our own significant other to show up for “Couples Therapy” at all. You should thank this guy for giving his time to pop in – at least he cared enough. I didn’t even get the “look at me – I wanna be on TV again” vibe from him at all. More like he was there because he cares about your daughter.
Daniel described Farrah as “extremely rude, no regard for anyone else…” but he’s sympathetic to the fact that she’s not doing it intentionally. “I don’t think she notices it.” Is he letting her off the hook?
His parting shot – “Make better decisions… Set a better example for Sophia,” was excellent. Farrah’s response to that in interview was sort of disturbing. “I am always a very good role model in front of my daughter in real life.” What does that mean? Sophia’s life has been documented since she was an embryo, for God’s sake. The kid is going to hear all about how mommy made a sex tape and beat up Grandma. What exactly does Farrah mean when she says “real life?” Inquiring minds want to know.
Kelsey only gets a head shake from me at this point. The couple has, I believe, officially split up. Hey Vh1 – Can’t you make a rule like if you break up and the doc agrees that Ghost is a cheating scumbag, they get sent home? I don’t want to watch them anymore. Kelsey must be stuck there because of her contract… or she has no pride left at all. Why is she counseling him, telling him he can love again the future? Barf. Go pack Kelsey. Seriously. If you’re that desperate to stay on TV, get Vh1 to do a show where you find the love of your life. Everybody else has one.
Alright, so I failed to see much value in the whole smash-up-the-living-room scene unless, of course, it was just for the drama. They wouldn’t do that, would they? A few of them definitely released some pent up aggression. The only one who really freaked me out was Jon Gosselin. Way to butcher “the family table.” I mean for REAL. That footage is definitely going to help in future custody battles. He smashed the table to bits, and then took on the television set. Nice symbolism.
“I wasted my whole fucking life. Ten years of WHAT??? Everything was fake.” Jon’s screaming was freaky and horrible to listen to – but it demonstrated that he truly has plenty of emotional issues to qualify him for therapy. “All of it, worthless.” Um pardon me, Jon – what about those eight darling children you claim to want custody over? Are you saying they’re worthless too?
After watching it together, my husband looked at me and commented, “Probably a good thing they got divorced.” Um, yep. Again, Jon is failing to acknowledge that his older daughters are most certainly old enough to be seeing this. It’s available to them online, for God’s sake. Their friends are watching it and talking about them behind their backs. To borrow my favorite line from Dr. Phil: “WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING?”
Earlier in the episode, Jon bitches that he has written a book with HIS side of the story but’s he’s afraid to publish it. He says that if he uses the words “I feel” when he says nasty things about his ex-wife or whatever else, it’s not defamatory. Way to share your strategy, Jon.
Did anybody else notice Liz not looking super-excited when Jon was ranting about getting custody of whichever of his children want to live with him? Probably oughta discuss that with her first. But back to the show that Jon is putting on about Kate – you know, the one his children will all be able to watch online for the rest of their lives.
After supposedly hanging up from a phone call with their mother, he rants, “She needs to eat shit and die!!!…there’s your honest depiction of Kate Gosselin. So fuck it. Piece of fucking shit. What a shitty human being. I don’t even want… I need a fucking punching bag.” Maybe that’s where the idea came for the whole trash-the-house scene. Nice. Way to be inspirational, Jon.
This guy makes me sick, but it’s hard not to be morbidly fascinated by his implosion now because I watched his family’s show from beginning to end and all I keep thinking is, OMG, the kids are going to see this. Kate’s gotta wish she could pick them all up and put them in a media-free bubble. How do you protect eight impressionable children from the vitriolic rants of their father on a major cable network? He’s in all the tabloids too. Does he even realize that he’s making Kate look better and better every week? Her hater’s club has to have shrunk dramatically.
Serious question – is it considered emotional abuse to mess up your kids’ heads via reality television? I mean, if he was screaming these things and smashing furniture in front of the children in the same room, there wouldn’t even be a question about the damage he’s doing. But he KNOWS the kids are going to see what he’s doing on “Couples Therapy” and to those kids, it will be like being there in the room with all of daddy’s rage. It cannot be healthy. And he’s doing it intentionally. I’m no lawyer, but I’d be going for sole custody with no visitation rights if I were Kate. Once the kids are older, if they want to see their father, SUPERVISED visitation only.
Let’s wrap up with the scary news – Jon is going to give Liz something in a jewelry box. Please let it be a “promise” ring not an engagement ring. The teaser just shows enough to make us wonder if he could be THAT stupid. We all know she is. Remember after the smashing scene when he tells her what he needs? “I want you to love me unconditionally.” She agreed to. Oh shit.
So it’s a toss-up as to whether we need popcorn or barf bags this week for both John and Jon’s big surprises to their ladies. I know I’ll be watching. JUST SAY NO Liz. OMG, I can’t even think about it. Ick!
Sandy Malone is the star of TLC’s reality show “Wedding Island” and a regular blogger for The Huffington Post. She’s the owner of Weddings in Vieques, a successful Caribbean destination wedding planning company based on tiny Vieques Island, seven miles off the coast of Puerto Rico. She also owns Weddings in Culebra, Flowers in Vieques and Boutique in Vieques……..Contact Sandy: