Will Stopping the Show Help?

This was submitted as a comment from Danielle, but we feel it is worthy as a post.

So I must admit, I have been a strong supporter of... So I must admit, I have been a strong supporter of J&K ever since I first saw the show despite all of the criticism I have heard about Kate. Today I spent a little more time really reading up and hearing what everyone has to say and, although I never thought Kate was perfect, I am less and less impressed by her. However, in response to criticism about the show being fueled by Kate's selfishness, why does anyone think stopping the show will safeguard her children from their mother's personality?

My mom is very much like Kate- although she claims that she is a selfless mother, reality shines through pretty clearly. Whether or not the show continues or not, the Gosselin children are always going to have their needs somewhat neglected (albeit not in a seriously abusive way). I have always felt that at least these kids really are getting these tremendous opportunities- I never had such experiences and I still have the same hang-ups anyone with a selfish and know-it-all mother like Kate would have.

I admit that I don't know what the future damages might be as the kids are so exposed and everything, but it's important to recognize that they will have the same parents whether the show airs or not. At least maybe they will have life experiences that will help them find themselves as individuals in the future. That's all we can hope for as viewers who truly care.

Identity Crisis

Each time I watch Jon and Kate Plus 8, I worry that the Gosselin children do not have their own identities. I am an identical twin, and family as well as strangers regularly referred to my sister and me as "the twins" or "the girls." Our younger brother was never referred to as "the boy"; of course, he was always called by his name. I hated being one of "the twins," to the point that now (as a 29 year old) it makes me happy when anyone calls me by my first name. I craved that someone would want to know me, as opposed to us.

Watching Jon and Kate constantly refer to their children as "the girls", "the boys", "the little girls", "the babies", "the twins" etc. makes me very sad. I know what that was like as a child and can only imagine what it feels like to these children - especially Cara and Mady. They not only have to deal with being twins, but it is likely that they also feel they are competing with a set of 6 younger siblings that many consider more "special." They are taken on various TV shows/talk shows and often are not even addressed by the interviewer (all of the kids now are old enough to answer a simple/fun kid-type question). How does that make them feel individually? What is the purpose of them being there? I guess to be on display for the audience to gawk at, much like animals at a zoo.

Another very common and very negative part of being a multiple is the matching clothing. It alarms me that the Gosselin children are always dressed alike on outings and special occasions. This is something I also experienced as a child; sometimes my sister and I wore outfits in different colors, but they we were always dressed alike. I realize that with 8 kids it might be easier for them to wear the same clothes. However, it would be a huge boost to each child's independence and sense of identity if they were allowed to pick out their own clothes. Mady and Cara are clearly old enough to do so, and the sextuplets could also begin to have that freedom. I am not saying Kate should go out and buy them all different clothes, but she could allow them to pick which outfit they would like to wear that day. Every time they go out in public or on trips the children are dressed alike, as if to draw more attention. They are paraded around like perfect little identical dolls. The episode at Dutch Wonderland with the numbered shirts made me cringe. The idea that Jon and Kate numbered their own children but then were too "embarrassed" to wear their own matching shirts just made me sick to my stomach. How do they think it makes the children feel - especially Mady and Cara, who are old enough to understand the dehumanizing purpose behind the numbered shirts. I don't buy the excuse that the numbers make it easier for them to keep track of the kids. The same could have been accomplished by allowing each child to choose their own shirt, perhaps in a certain color.

If Jon and Kate are not careful, their children will grow up with serious social and emotional problems. These children need individuality and a sense of self, separate from a numbered position in a "group" of siblings.

Submitted by Diane