"Back to School" Recap

Submitted by ThreeFarmers

The twins are headed back to school and the tups enter Pre-K. Will the children miss being away from their parents? Or will they look at their parents and realize that through education life will give them many options that don’t involve exploitation, an inflated sense of entitlement, or the fraudulent solicitation of charitable dollars from people of lesser means than they? Time will tell.

It’s notable that, for the first time, Jon and Kate take to the couch separately. I’m interested to discover if Jon can construct a complete thought on his own and to see how Kate responds when she has no one belittle. They explain the situation by saying that their schedules are just too busy to be in the same room together.

Pre-school is three afternoons a week. For the first time the tups will learn to make friends who are outside of their sextet. This, to me, is startling. How can a young family with eight children living in a nice suburban neighborhood be so isolated that the children have yet to socialize with anyone their own age? Before school starts, they have to get their wellness checkups. During the weight/height check we learn that Hannah is the heaviest and Joel is the littlest. This is shocking to Kate because, in her expert medical opinion, Collin’s head should cause him to tip the scales. Kate later states, while the kids are being questioned about what foods they enjoy, that her kids will eat anything. That’ s because they are all very hungry, Kate. You’re vain. We get that, but you need to remember that you’re raising children, not hummingbirds.

Next, it’s time to pull out the sphygmomanometer and check everyone’s blood pressure then it’s into the gowns. Alexis gives Aaden a poke and he says “ouch” and Jon admonishes him for over reacting. For the first time in many, many episodes, we hear Kate tell Alexis to keep her hands to herself. Apparently, if their image consultant won’t allow Kate to hit, then no one else can, either. Leah has achy ears, so she got some antibiotics. Although Leah has been complaining about her ears for a while, Kate didn’t think a special trip to the doctor was necessary.

Speaking of that doctor, isn’t medical information supposed to be private? What sort of doctor would allow cameras in the room where a physical examination is taking place? Particularly when it involves children who are not old enough to give their consent. After the vision exam, we learn that Aaden’s vision is stable. The interviewer asks Kate about Aaden’s eye exam and she said she doesn’t know. Let’s rewind for a moment. When Kate was in NYC on her business trip she got snitty when Jon didn’t phone her to get her opinion about a tiny cut on Alexis’ head, but when asked about an issue at least as important as Alexis’ cut, Kate, who was there, albeit in another room, doesn’t care enough to learn the results. Poor Aaden, that’s the burden of being a boy in the Gosselin house.

Joel is despondent while being questioned about his likes and dislikes. He is sick to death of being last all the time. Kate does everything in birth order, which is her pathetically logical excuse for Joel’s place at the end of the line. She states that she might consider doing reverse birth order sometime so Joel won’t always be last. Hey, Kate. You’re mean. No child will ever understand your birth-order logic. How difficult is it to take turns? Teachers manage to do it with 20+ kids everyday because they understand that having the chance to be first now and then makes a child feel special. Kids are keenly aware of their place in line and in a family and to consistently put the same child last because of something as completely circumstantial as birth order, affects them deeply. If you knew that Joel was sad because he was last, then you knew enough to do it differently. I’ll say it again. You’re mean. By always using birth order, Joel already knows that he is last, no matter what.

Back in the driveway, the vans are parked sideways so there will be no drive-by gawking at the Gosselins. The kids play with a couple of remote controlled Tonka cars and Kate comments that since there are only two vehicles, the children will fight over them. Did you hear that? KATE NEEDS MORE THAN TWO! CARS SO THE CHILDREN WON’T FIGHT. I guess it’s easier to have six of everything than it is to teach the children to share. When I was a kid, we weren’t allowed to fight over toys. If there was a fight, the toy was put away for at least a week. Perhaps Kate should get her head around the fact that those cars only run on two frequencies so you can only have two running in the same place at the same time. If there are more than two, the trucks will all react to the signal coming from the remote that is on the same frequency and they will all run into each other. Perhaps the Gosselins should know something about the products they agree to endorse on the show.

Jon does a training wheel-ectomy on Joel’s bike and everyone gets a chance to experience life on two wheels. With one quick push Joel gets his first taste of freedom and he takes to riding that two-wheeler like Kate to fertility treatments. GO, JOELLY, GO! All the other kids get a turn on the two-wheeler, but gravity isn’t working in their favor. Some of the kids are quite upset, but I am tickled to death that Joel is FIRST in something that is totally out of his mother’s control. Good for him. May this be the start of many exciting firsts in this little boy’s life. J&K have to mention that Joel was whining the whole time he was riding his bike. I don’t suppose it would have anything to do with his lack of confidence that comes from being last all the time, would it? Maybe it’s because every time he does something well, his parents have to find something negative to tell the cameras.

Too much fun and everyone is late for school. It’s a mad rush for the van and they make it just in time to be greeted by Miss Kimberly, their teacher. We don’t see any other children there so we really don’t know how the tups are socializing with other kids. Kate goes over the green/yellow/red method used for monitoring behavior in the classroom and lets everyone know that her children would probably never treat other children as badly as they treat each other.

It’s right about now that Kate slips in another of her made up words. This week’s entry is “stampled” which seems to be a mutation of “stomped” and “trampled.” It’s time that we start making up words to describe Jon and/or Kate. Here’s my entry: egophile- someone who is so enraptured by their own over-inflated self worth, that they fail to recognize the damage they are doing to those who are placed in their care.

As the show comes to a close, I look back at the title, Back To School, and notice that the only children going back to school are the twins and they weren’t seen in the episode at all. Did the twins get a break from filming or was their footage not interesting enough to save it from the editing room floor? I don’t know, but for some reason, they were omitted from an episode that was obviously named because of their perspective.

Jon is glad because the kids are getting bigger, doing things, and going places. He admits that time is flying. Kate tells us that she can still see “baby” when she looks at them. I would imagine that would have something to do with the bibs around their necks. That, and the fact that the children have the self-control of two-year-olds. She says that as they get older (like Mady and Cara) and start getting attitudes, she’ll be in trouble. That’s true. Exploitation does require some cooperation on the part of the children.

42 comments:

Ravello said...

3Farmers, thanks for an excellent wrap up. You write beautifully, a pleasure to read your summaries.

I was very angry with the filming in the pediatrician office. Just when I think the KONS cannot sink any lower, they do.
That physician must have wanted her 15 minutes of fame. It was shameful to film what appeared to be a mini developmental assessment.
A physical exam should be a private event. There are HIPPA laws in place to protect the privacy of a patient. Once again, these small helpless children are exploited for the sake of money. They have 40 episodes to film this season and nothing is sacred.

I was thrilled to see Joel ride his bike but the KONS managed to ruin his moment by dissing him because he was "whining".
Joel is definitely low man on the totem pole, he is barely on his mother's radar. To make excuses he is last in birth order does not describe the magnitude of his mother snubbing him for love and affection. Joel has been cheated out of way more than a turn in the doctor's office.

Anonymous said...

I can't imagine why you don't have a column.....

Diane said...

I hope that Kate will change her ways and not say anything negative about anyone in her family. Does she really have to say to Joel, "I thought you wouldn't make it"? Shouldn't she say "I knew you could make it, I'm so proud of you!"

I totally agree with you and was thinking the same exact thing when she said that. Gosh Kate, you couldn't just say "GOOD JOB JOEL!"?? I guess no matter what any of the boys do it won't be good enough for her. It really is quite sad. She needs some serious help.

ThreeFarmers said...

Frankly, I think Kate was irritated that Joel road that bike first.

Lonnyswife said...

Excellent as always. I still think these would work as voice-overs for repeats of episodes.

Just an extra note: I was doing some writing regarding Kate's 'abuse' of the English language and I went on line to see if it were in fact a word.
What I ended up finding was this:

http://blog.psychic-wisdom.net/2008/10/19/cnn-and-paul-petersen-from-a-minor-consideration-take-a-look-at-the-gosselin-children-exploitation/

Where, not only did I find 'favoristest' I also found 'stampled' and 'smallen', as in 'can you smallen the beads'.
I was fearful about looking up any of the other horrendously horrendous words she spouts for fear they would be contained there as well.
Who knew? All this time we thought she was ignorant when really she's just been good in the 'hood!!!

Lonnyswife said...

cRAP!! Wrong link!!
Here's the right one--

http://www.urbandictionary.com/

Anonymous said...

I too was extremely bothered with the whole "I don't know what the eye report was" thing. Something about how she said it seemed so cold and pretentious. I've heard her take that tone before in the past too.
Almost like she is saying "why should I know? I'm way too good to keep track of those kinds of things"

I hate when she does that.Like it's not important enough for her bother with. Ridiculous.

And the only time she praises those kids is when they are doing something that will benefit in making her life easier. For example, Pooping in the potty. Now if any other mother who was actually loving, attentive and praised every little thing their precious children did, took pictures of the first poop in the potty, we wouldn't be so shocked about it. But when we see Kate, who takes no interest in the achievements of her children, all the sudden take actual photos of the feces, it really catches us off our guard . The only reason she was so incredible happy about the poop was because this meant she didn't have to bother herself with changing anymore diapers.

Anonymous said...

Here's one for you:
Conven-ophobe.
When it is convenient for Kate she will be a germaphobe or OCD, or whatever her excuse of the week is.

ThreeFarmers said...

convenophobe

Excellent and quite appropriate, I might add.

Anonymous said...

3F, thank goodness you don't have a big head like Kate, otherwise, all this praise being lavished on you might make you mean =)

You are a truly gifted writer- thank you for putting the effort each week to bring a little lightness and brightness to an otherwise very sad situation.

Of course, there is so much to comment on, so I will pick just one : Kate not knowing/caring about Aaden's eye report. She sure did care when she was trying to milk more money out of the state for Aaden's "disability"......

Lonnyswife said...

I wasn't the least bit surprised by Joel and his biking without training wheels accomplishment.
Which one of those kids would have more reason to skedaddle than the last one to be picked for ALL things??
They best put either a Geo tracker or a long leash on that bike as I predict one day, he'll walk outta the house with his little name-blacked out back back, hop on his two-wheeler and head for the hills.
And if he doesn't do it, I imagine the thought is sitting there percolating in his head.

avasmommy said...

Did anyone notice all the cars lined up on the road in front of their house? There was even a little white car in the driveway. How do people not realize that J&K HAVE help....

Anonymous said...

:::::That, and the fact that the children have the self-control of two-year-olds.::::

Look, I understand that you don't feel bad about ripping on the parents, but leave the kids alone- they didn't ask for this.

ThreeFarmers said...

Look, I understand that you don't feel bad about ripping on the parents, but leave the kids alone- they didn't ask for this.

I believe the behavior issues that exist with the children are the fault of the parents. Kate has said many times that she doesn't bother breaking up every little fight. We witnessed in this episode that Kate would rather have more toys than teach the children how to share. I have never blamed the children for anything that is happening to them.

Anonymous said...

I have contacted Hasbro Toy Co. as they have a phone contact for consumer questions. I explained Kates' comments and told them it was almost like a slap in the face because you only gave them two if you did. The lady answering the phone was very polite thanked me for my concern and told me she would pass on my comments to the advertising department. As a 50yr old man I remeber the GI Joe Hasbro days well. Surely these companies could find more grateful recipients of there product. Or at least better actors to promote their product placement.

Anonymous said...

3F said: I believe the behavior issues that exist with the children are the fault of the parents. Kate has said many times that she doesn't bother breaking up every little fight. We witnessed in this episode that Kate would rather have more toys than teach the children how to share. I have never blamed the children for anything that is happening to them.
___________
I would venture to say that Kate has pretty much abdicated her parental responsibilities entirely. The only interest she has in those kids is how she can market them for more $$$$.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Look, I understand that you don't feel bad about ripping on the parents, but leave the kids alone- they didn't ask for this.


If the show was about a lazy slacker and his emasculating wife, sitting on a couch reveling gaily in their ignorance, none of us would care. What we care about is that there are eight little kids held hostage by the greed of producers, sponsors, a network, and their own parents. The strange, inappropriate signs in the children (uncontrolled tantrums in one 8 yr old, grownup-long fingernails on the other, and six 4 yr olds who act like they are 2) are necessary to point out because they are indicators that these children are being negatively affected. Of course they didn't ask for it, that's the point.

Anonymous said...

First, kudos to Three Farmers for doing another fine recap job. And I agree, 3F, Kate was p*ssed that Joel was the only tup able to ride a bike without the training wheels...all I can say is 'Go, Joel, go! I'm sure she was rooting for Hannie. Second, with regard to Kate not knowing about Aaden's eye exam...anyone remember the trip to the furniture store to 'buy' big beds for the tups?? That was the day Colin's constipation problem was broadcast for millions to witness and I recall Kate something like, 'oh, I'm not sure how long he had the problem, don't remember the last time he made number 2' She brushed it off as no big deal, dragging him to a store while he was obviously uncomfortable to say the least!! Kate's concern that day was picking out beds, not her child's pain...how embarrasssing for the little guy. At least Jon got in there and helped Colin out, while Nurse Ratchett...I mean Kate...picked out the all-important beds...

Sharon in Vermont said...

Do you know if KON ever visits here, and if so, if they have ever posted? How can they in all good conscience continue with this show? We struggle on a month-to-month basis and I would rather this be the case than exploiting my children to live in a 8,000 sq. ft. home. It just makes me ill, this whole situation. Those are lovely children with horrid parents. My message to the parents, please stop. You are horrible examples. Maybe someday your children will forgive you.

Anonymous said...

"The strange, inappropriate signs in the children (uncontrolled tantrums in one 8 yr old, grownup-long fingernails on the other, and six 4 yr olds who act like they are 2) are necessary to point out because they are indicators that these children are being negatively affected. Of course they didn't ask for it, that's the point."

Not to mention a sign, in a child's own writing telling the cameras to keep out, a child walking around with a blanket on their head to avoid the camera, a child placing their hand out in a gesture to block the camera, a child esaping to a room and slamming the door so the cameras cannot follow.

Anonymous said...

Sharon in Vermont said...
Do you know if KON ever visits here, and if so, if they have ever posted?
Most certainly J & K's, and or their PR team have and are frequent visitors to this blog site.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
That was the day Colin's constipation problem was broadcast for millions to witness and I recall Kate something like, 'oh, I'm not sure how long he had the problem, don't remember the last time he made number 2' She brushed it off as no big deal, dragging him to a store while he was obviously uncomfortable to say the least!! Kate's concern that day was picking out beds, not her child's pain...how embarrasssing for the little guy. At least Jon got in there and helped Colin out, while Nurse Ratchett...I mean Kate...picked out the all-important beds...


That struck me as beyond bizarre, and really says it all about Kate. Allegedly a trained nurse, she allows her husband, who has no medical training (or any other higher education as far as we know) to manually disimpact her toddler son, out in the parking lot, not caring to even supervise.

Anonymous said...

"Second, with regard to Kate not knowing about Aaden's eye exam...anyone remember the trip to the furniture store to 'buy' big beds for the tups?? That was the day Colin's constipation problem was broadcast for millions to witness and I recall Kate something like, 'oh, I'm not sure how long he had the problem, don't remember the last time he made number 2' She brushed it off as no big deal, dragging him to a store while he was obviously uncomfortable to say the least!! Kate's concern that day was picking out beds, not her child's pain...how embarrasssing for the little guy."
________________
How can these incidents alone NOT be categorized as blatant neglect?? And what about Leah's (or was it Alexis') ear infection that Kate didn't give a damn about? I interpret this as the kids being "products" that Kate "owns" to display for money. Where is the love??

Anonymous said...

What pissed me off about Colin and the bed buying show, was kate holding the kid for a second, and then says "its like holding and antelope". Why the heck would anyone in their right mind say something like that when a child is in pain.
So incredibly insensitive. Its all about Kate and what she wants, no matter who suffers in the process. She is a horrible mother!

Anonymous said...

"But when we see Kate, who takes no interest in the achievements of her children, all the sudden take actual photos of the feces, it really catches us off our guard . The only reason she was so incredible happy about the poop was because this meant she didn't have to bother herself with changing anymore diapers."
_____________
I think it's safe to say that what we have had here all along is an obsession with urine and feces. Since when do urine and feces make "good television??"

Rosemary Woodhouse said...

I cannot speak for GWOP, I can say that J&K and their people are frequent visitors to my Gosselin section over on my own blog, A Touch Of Tuesday Weld. I would bet cash money that they visit THIS site several times a day.

Anonymous said...

"That struck me as beyond bizarre, and really says it all about Kate. Allegedly a trained nurse, she allows her husband, who has no medical training (or any other higher education as far as we know) to manually disimpact her toddler son, out in the parking lot, not caring to even supervise."

While Jon attempts to manually disimpact his toddler son, his other same age son stands by and watches while a cameraperson lurks close by continuing to film the events as they transpire. IMO, the documented treatment of Collin in the bed buying episode is the worst to date.

Anonymous said...

Rosemary Woodhouse said...
I cannot speak for GWOP, I can say that J&K and their people are frequent visitors to my Gosselin section over on my own blog, A Touch Of Tuesday Weld. I would bet cash money that they visit THIS site several times a day
----------------------------------

couple questions...
1. Why do they visit your site?
2. How do you know its them?

Anonymous said...

Another great recap, 3Farmers, the perfect combination of humor and the hard realities of this show.

Anonymous said...

Obviously, the twins were NOT involved in this episode, because they have HAD IT!!

When they appeared on GMA, Cara looked like she was half asleep,
and Mady must have been bribed,
as she is usually the one who
misbehaves and shows attitude!!

Anonymous said...

Mom2--wherever you are as I can't find the post now--from your screen name I assume that you are a mother. I am. Yes, eight kids is a big family to take care of, but many people have big families; lots of families are larger than the Gosselins'. The point is would you put your children on TV using the toilet, taking a bath, or having a private, emotional moment? Would you do this in exchange for plastic surgery, exotic vacations, and high-end clothing? Would you have studio lighting installed in your house and a camera crew underfoot for hours each week? Would you give up your own honest employment to make your living off of your children? I'm going to guess that you would not. I know I wouldn't because I'd feel dirty. This is a devil's deal that has gone well beyond keeping food on the table. If the Gosselins' behavior is acceptable, why don't all large families scramble for similar deals? I can't think of any family other than the Gosselins who use their children this way to this extent. Please think about it.

Anonymous said...

Leah's ear infections make me so sad. When my daughter had ear infections, she was hurting, especially at night when she was laying down. I could always tell right away when she had one and would get her to the dr. the next day. Poor Leah had to suffer for who knows how long until there was a check up scheduled to have her ears checked.

Anonymous said...

The Gosselin children simply must learn to get sick only when there is a planned show visit to a doctor's or dentist's office. Their parents are much too busy with the family business to take time for such nonsense. The show is their life, don't forget.

Anonymous said...

And, Kate must be a fantastic nurse, because as Jon said on the show, Kate has an othoscope at home, but (and, I am paraphrasing) Leah moves her head to much. So, the Doctor can get Leah to keep her head still for a few seconds, but her mother can't?

michelle said...

Did the doctor, too, get her free endorsement from, yet again, the sextuplets.
Everything is at the expense of the children, especially the tups. Without them there would have never been a show.

Anonymous said...

What ever happened to the HIPPA laws?

michelle said...

I believe that the Doctor indeed wanted the "free advertizement" of her practice. More patients to go to the Gosselins' pediatrician, perhaps??

Maybe the HIPPA law only required the "okay to film this office visit" from the parents, Jon and Kate. I mean the children are all minors, they probably don't need their consent.

Anonymous said...

Maybe they act like 2-year-olds because she referred to them as "the babies" collectively until they turned 3. I believe it was their 3rd birthday when they became "the little kids." And I agree with you 100%...I know multiples experience developmental delays, but they are 2 months older than my 4-year-old and LIGHTYEARS behind.

I just wanted to add that TLC re-ran the very first hour-long special this week, when the tups were 16 months old...Mady was so gentle and quiet and loving towards the tups back then...I know it's not her fault she acts out, but there you go. Compare those first glimpses of the Gosselin family to the total overexposure now and it doesn't take a genius to figure out how the show is affecting them, especially Mady and Cara.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Maybe they act like 2-year-olds because she referred to them as "the babies" collectively until they turned 3... I just wanted to add that TLC re-ran the very first hour-long special this week, when the tups were 16 months old...
-----------------------------

I have seen that hour long special and I did notice the difference in the family, except Kate, who was already annoying in that first episode. The only difference was she was not as glamorous looking as she is now.
I just want to comment regarding the development of the kids. I have a nephew who is four years old and he does not sound at all like the Gosselin kids. He also plays Wii and other games with his brother and other older cousins. Another nephew of mine (I only have one niece, boys run in the family, Kate would hate that) can read books already at age four, his parents are both teachers though so I guess it depends on the parents.
I have also babysat a two year old and I can say that the Gosselin kids do not act like two years old kids, maybe not all the time. I guess because Kate does not do anything when they hit each other so they continue with that. I don't think they should consider the crew family because they don't even interfere when the kids fight each other. I remember lots of scenes where the kids look up to them cying, obviously for help, but they don't do anything, they just continue filming (Ex. when Collin pushed Alexis off the bench at the garage). I don't think that's family at all. If they really care they would interfere and tell Collin that he shouldn't do it.
I was really upset when Jon mentioned that Leah was having earaches and Kate give up on her because she moves her head too much! Shouldn't she have rushed to the clinic already as a normal loving mom would?
I don't understand why they have to blurt embarassing stuffs out about their kids. They are so shameless. At the christmas special they even mentioned that Hannah had an accident, but it was not caught in film at all so why do they have to say that?
I know of some parents who embarass their kids all the time and I personally think these parents have low IQs. Maybe both Jon and Kate have low IQs, but Kate has a very very low EQ.

Alice Amplified said...

ThreeFarmers cracks me up to no end....

"Hey Kate, you're mean"

"Meanwhile, back at the driveway.."

You're the best. You make me laugh so hard. I have children, I love them, I care for them....I am their biggest fans. What Kate needs is a bird, maybe a parakeet, something that doesn't talk back...but not six children....

Anonymous said...

i try not to watch this show, it's just so bad, the parents are like large children, who don't work now, make money off of their children.. it's really horrible to watch, and makes me cringe so very much.. i really think they need to stop, and get a real life, for everyone's sake.

Anonymous said...

It is not unreasonable to put bibs on young children!! If I had 6 four-year-olds I would to the same thing. From what I've seen, they aren't as misbehaved as you let on. Also, it's perfectly normal for a mother to still see her children as babies. I think you are reading too far between the lines regarding some aspects of the show.