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Anne Heche, What Is Up??

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OK, seriously. What is up with all the hateful talk about ex-spouses in the media right now?

Anne Heche, Coley Laffoon

Michelle Golland, Psy.D.: I understand these can be real, authentic feelings you are having, but please tell your therapist -- not David Letterman! I think Jon and Kate Gosselin unleashed Pandora's box of hatred for an ex and letting millions of people know about it. This is a BIG problem in our culture right now, and the only innocent victims are the children.

Anne Heche divorced Coley Laffoon in early 2009 after a two-year court battle over custody of their son, Homer, furniture, and alimony. The bitter divorce seems to have turned Anne into a very bitter person. She is humiliating her ex-husband, the father of her son, because she is required to pay him a monthly amount of child support, and was ordered by a judge to pay him half a million dollars in the settlement. This is what would happen if the financial earning roles were reversed, Anne, and I wonder if you would like being called a "lazy *ss." To me, this is further evidence of her instability, and it makes me question her parenting skills.

I think it is important to clarify the "soccer coaching" comments made by Anne. As a psychologist, I believe it is a good idea that a father wants to be involved in such a meaningful and connected way with his son. I also believe Anne should think more about Homer and his needs as a child than about her own need to vent on national television.

You may think it is cathartic to release your anger and rage in front of others, but you are really only damaging your children. Homer is 7 years old, and I am sure that if Anne is unable to control herself on David Letterman, she would have an equally hard time controlling her anger in front of her child. She is only shining a light on her own character flaws by behaving so poorly.

When you criticize, humiliate, or degrade your ex, you might as well say those same words directly to your child about their parent, because that is how they will interpret those words. Your children were created by both of you, and they feel equally connected to and protective of both parents, even if divorced. When you choose to be negative and take your frustrations out on your ex in front of your kids, they are hurt and confused. You lower their self-esteem and drive a wedge between yourself and that child.

As a mature and conscious parent, you are required to have grace, dignity, and respect for your ex whenever you are around your children (or on national television!). Your anger and frustration is not to be their burden.

next: The Last Birthday (Party)
8 comments so far | Post a comment now
homemom3 August 28, 2009, 10:47 AM

I totally agree and am glad I’m not the only person that is stating this. I understand that she has hard feelings and maybe she doesn’t even like him, but this is for the sake of their child. It sounds to me that he either still has a soft spot for her or wants that good relationship with her for their son. Not to mention the whole “soccer” issue, umm, so he’s the coach and is inviting her. Maybe (if she isn’t attending) their son is upset by this and has said something to dad, dad has invited so she’ll know he is okay with her being there. Either way I hope she realizes whatever she says now goes to print, one day her son will/may see this.

Chrissy August 28, 2009, 6:08 PM

Why does she have hard feelings? She cheated on him (and her son) by having an affair with her co-star.
He exhusband stayed home to raise their son while she went to work on her tv series and spent long hours on set.
And when they got married He was the the only working because no one would work with Ann after Her behaviour.
Anyone who should harbor hard feelings its Conley Laffoon not Ann Heche.
This is not the first time she has been dispictablely towards a former flame.

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