Thursday, December 11, 2008

One year ago today we were on Dr. Phil

For those of you that don't know.......Grayson and I were on the Dr. Phil show. It is a long and crazy story, click here to read all about how this whole thing started and click here , here and here for more info. Grayson and his friends decided to mattress surf (they pulled a mattress behind a truck out in a field) and they filmed it and put it on You Tube. A few days later the producers from Dr. Phil called and asked if we would come on the show. We were very leery and concerned, as we were worried that Dr. Phil would "attack" the boys or make us look like irresponsible parents. After many conversations on the phone with different producers, and being reassured by them that that would not happen, all of us parents decided that this was an okay thing to do and would probably be a great experience for the boys. We foolishly believed all the promises that we were given by the producers!

It was pretty exciting, but also very disappointing! Last year I was scared to death to talk about it because we signed all kinds of contracts that we would no divulge any information before the show aired. By the time the show did air, we were so sick and tired of the whole thing and really, really disillusioned and disappointed in Dr. Phil that I didn't want to talk about it. Now that a year has gone by, I am able to remember mostly all of the good and I am slowly forgetting the bad! Above is a picture of the kids and the parents waiting at the airport.
Dr. Phil flew us to LA and paid for most of the expenses. Here's Grayson and I in the airplane. Cute picture of Grayson......bad picture of me!
It was really, really exciting because it was Grayson's first time to fly! I love this picture of him looking out the window. It was fun flying with him because everything was so new and exciting to him!
Here's a picture of the boys getting off the plane in LA!
The airport was huge!
This was such an exciting experience!
When we got to the parking lot there were four limo drivers, one for each family! They held signs that said our last was so cool! Here's Grayson in the limo!
This is our limousine driver. I forgot his name, but he was really nice.
When we got to the hotel there were a series of unfortunate events. One thing was the water was freezing!
The boys didn't care though, they still enjoyed the pool.
Here's the boys at dinner, from left to right, Cody, Conner, Grayson and Garrett. One of the promises they made was that they would pay for our dinner, but only at the hotel and guess what.......the hotel restaurant was closed when we got there! We called the producer and complained and at first they said there was nothing they could do, order room service. We were so angry and called them back reminding them that this is one of the perks that made us all want to fly down there. They finally said okay, that we could go out on the town and they would pay for it. They told us they wanted us to enjoy our experience with the Dr. Phil show and said go out and have a great time and give us the receipts in the morning, the Dr. Phil show will pay for it. So, we took a couple of taxis and went to a nice restaurant (it was the only open restaurant that was near by and it was expensive).
Here's the parents at dinner, from left to right, me, Letty, Nicole, Chris and Tina. We told the kids to order what they wanted and we ordered what we wanted. Unfortunately, after the show was over and we were to receive the money for the restaurant, they did not pay for it! The dinner cost over $600.00 and we all had to split the bill. Grrrr! They also said they would reimburse us for lost wages; two of the parents have jobs where they work 10 hour shifts, so they lost 20 hours in wages, but the show only paid for 16. It is just story after story of things like that were so wrong and you realize that because we signed contracts there was nothing we could do......they "owned" us.
This was the morning view from our hotel room.
It was really fun to wake up and see the Hollywood sign!
Grayson loved staying in the four star hotel (we were told it was a five star).
Grayson and I enjoyed a lovely breakfast in the hotel.
The limo driver came and picked us up again and took us to the studio.
It was a cool experience to be driving on these lots!
They escorted us to the green room (even though this one is blue). Here are the boys getting ready for make-up and wardrobe. Speaking of wardrobe, they told us to wear what we wanted, so I bought Grayson a new outfit, but when we got there they made him and Cody change clothes. They made me change from my jeans to some of the pants from wardrobe (do you think that Robin wore them at one time????LOL!). It was so silly because I didn't even get on the show. Nicole finally said, "This isn't church, it's a talk show for pete's sake!" We were getting really irritated by this point!
There were lots of good times, here is a picture of all of us in the green room, but there were so many broken promises. If you ever have an opportunity to be on a show like this, just beware!
They did all of our the kids make-up. They did some of the mother's hair and make-up, but I did my own and they touched me up a little. That is all of the pictures I have of the show, they would not let us take our cameras in. We were pretty upset when they started filming as they were not truthful with us. I specifically asked the producer if they were going to have the family on the show that their son was killed while mattress surfing. They told me no. The truth was, their family did come on the show and they had an "expert" doctor on the show too trying to discourage the boys from doing it.
We made the best of it and came home. It was neat to have this experience. A few weeks later the show aired. It was so weird to look at Dr. Phil's website and see my son's picture!
We had a "Dr. Phil" party at Chris and Nicole's house. It was really fun. By this time we were mostly over our frustrations and it was neat to watch our kids on TV! While we were on the set filming we realized that they were making our boys look like crazy teenagers and were making us parents look like losers who are irresponsible. We were very upset about this, but when the show aired, it wasn't so bad. They cut a lot of it out and the show actually made the boys look like pretty neat kids.
I recorded the show and tried to take pictures from the TV. Here's a picture of all the boys explaining about mattress surfing. Grayson is on the left.
It is so surreal to see your kids on national television! Grayson didn't get to talk much, but that was okay, he still had a great experience.
I never did meet Dr. Phil, which really surprised me. Here they flew my under age son out to LA to be on their TV show and Dr. Phil never came into the green room to meet us. He only met the boys when he came out on the stage about three seconds before the show started. Grayson said it was weird to see him so close and that he looked funny with tons of cracked make-up on and pink lipstick! He was not very friendly, in fact, he actually was rude and yelled at one of the boys once, but of course they cut that part out.
This is the part that was really humbling to me. It was so not fair! They sent a crew out to Oregon to interview and film the boys while mattress surfing. They wanted the parents to come along too. Well, this particular day it was pouring down rain! They filmed the boys out in the field and I guess I was the only mom that they filmed out there too. Later in the day, we all went to a nice hotel and they did professional interviews with all the mother's and the sons. Well, they did film me at the hotel and I was all dressed up and had fresh hair and make-up. They interviewed me for about 15 minutes or so, but for some reason they only showed the shots of me all gross and wet outside! They showed the other three mother's looking their best at their hotel interviews, but not me! I was soooo embarrassed and disappointed!
The first part of the picture above is what I looked like right after my interview in the hotel, the middle picture is from earlier that day during the field shoot before I got soaked, but they decided to show the one of me all wet and yucky! Talk about humbling! Oh, it is not about me and never was, I was okay with it, but this was my ten minutes of fame and I had to look like a drowned rat!!!! I think they wanted me to look like white trash or something! LOL!
This was such a neat experience for these four boys and they will always remember it. Even though things did not go perfect, it is really cool to say "hey, my son was on national television!" If you would like to see excerpts from the show, go to Dr. Phil's website and click on archives. Then type in "Mattress Surfing" or the real name of the show was "Shocking Trends of the New Year" and you can see a few pictures and read about it. I was sitting right behind the doctor, so in some of the shots of him you can barely see my face. The funny thing about all of this is that our boys only mattress surfed about three times and have never done it again since!

Does this make me a celebrity??? LOL!!!!

I will be showing more of our Christmas decorations and our Christmas party in the next few days.

"The Lord is on my side; I will not fear. What can man do to me? The Lord is on my side as my helper; It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in man.It is better to take refuge in the Lord than to trust in princes." Psalm 118:6,8,9

Merry Christmas! Sharon


Connie said...

You're a celeb, sweetpea!! Yessssssss, the L.A. airpost is HUGE!!! I hate it....... But I'll bet the boys will never ever forget it adventure.

Brenda said...

Gosh Sharon,time passes so fast. It doesn't seem like a year ago.
I guess the show never checked back on you guys?

grey like snuffie said...

How fun, I guess. :) Crazy the whole story. Kind of gives you a glimpse into the "real" world of staged Hollywood. I never buy what I see on TV but this really makes me think twice. Glad you were all able to work through the negative part.

Lille meg said...

I can understand you had a great time, and you will rembember this, I guess!
Have you really been on TV,too?

Now it is time for you to recall these memories.

Have a nice day!

Sarah said...

This is so weird because I remember watching this show and thinking it was kind of crazy the light they were shedding on the mattress surfing. I am from the country and we did crazy things as teenagers. Stuff like riding the three wheeler on ponds when they were iced over and we even take a plastic sled and pull it behind a four wheeler out in the field. We call it sled riding. Personally as a mother I would rather my kids grow up doing fun stuff like this than to be out partying and doing things they shouldn't. I don't see a problem with old fashioned fun. Granted they could hurt but anyone can get hurt doing anything including driving cars. So should we get rid of car? Lol.....looks like your boys had a great time doing something fun.

Guess I was a little suprised to realize that all that stuff happened to you on the show. They always make it look so glamourous!

Have a great day!

Jocelyn said...

Oh the horrors of Hollywood. It is absolutely awful, not somewhere I would ever want to be.
WOW! You got your 15 minutes of fame!
You looked beautiful even with wet hair and sliding down make up!

luvmy4sons said...

Wow. What an experience. There is much to learn from yours! I would be so humbled and bummed that theyshowed only the gross picture of me! But I think you still looked lovely. I suppose it could have been so much worse. Guess it is true that you simply can't trust the majority of Hollywood. Thanks for sharing this story. I didn't know about it. Wow!

Amy said...

I remember that episode of Dr. Phil. My husband is a youth pastor so when were hear something about teens we watch so we can know more on what is going on through their heads since we don't have teens in our home yet.

I can understand your frustrations though. I'm sure it was a great experience though.

Sharon said...

Like you said you had your ten minutes of fame!
Unfortunate how somw things get all twisted, but you had an experience of a lifetime. Who knows maybe some will see you picture and cast you in a smash hit movie!!!!!
Thanks for sharing.

BTW I showed my husband your chees grater luminaries, and he thought they are cool! I am doing them on my front outside stairs for the holidays.

Liz said...

That is just the coolest experience! And you DID NOT look like white trash. Rain or no rain.. you always look beautiful.

But, it would have made me upset too. :)

Mrs.Ruiz said...

Thats pretty cool:) I was invited to go on Judge Joe Brown but declined the offer:) i had a supicion that doctor Phil wasn't all what he appeared to be:)

YaYa's Funhouse said...

May I have your autograph?? tee-hee
Chalk the experiece up to..."makin memories"
Enjoyed reading your story.
I love your decor on your blog.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I'm sorry it was such a mixed experience. I'm glad the show itself wasn't too slanted.

onlymehere said...

I'm a friend of Kathi's and I really enjoyed this post. What an eye opener as to how things really were. I don't watch Dr. Phil much and it's good to know that things aren't always what they appear or we're "assured" they will be. I really like your decorations in the Christmas blog too. Cindy

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