Collin Gosselin blames reality TV for destroying his family: ‘I think it tore us apart’
Kate placed Collin in an institution to help him deal with his alleged behavioral issues years ago.
In his first-ever interview, one of the sextuplets from TLC’s hit show “Jon & Kate Plus 8” is opening up about what life has been like as a member of one of America’s most famous families. Collin Gosselin opened up to “Entertainment Tonight” about his parents’ acrimonious divorce, his relationship with his mom, Kate, as well as his other siblings.
Collin, who is now 18, reflected on his experience in front of the cameras of his family’s reality show, which ran from 2007 to 2017 (later called “Kate Plus 8” after the couple divorced). He also shared why he believes he and his mom are estranged.
“I want to believe it was because of TV and what being in the public eye does to a family. I think it tore us apart,” Collin, who began filming the show when he was still in diapers. “It gave us less time to actually be together as a family [and] more time to be in the public eye.”
Several years ago, Kate publicly shared that she had placed Collin in an “institution” to help him deal with alleged behavioral issues and “special needs.” Collin says being institutionalized was a traumatic experience, and upon his release his dad Jon was awarded sole custody of him.
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“It’s unfortunate that that’s how my mom, you know, phrased me as a person,” he said. “You know, I don’t see those things and I don’t think anybody else sees those things, but if that’s how she sees me then, you know, that’s her point of view and I hope that, if we met again one day, she would understand that, you know, it’s not the case.”
During his time at Fairmont Behavioral Health Institute when he was just thirteen, he began writing his dad letters and begging for help. He says he was so young he didn’t have “a lot of life skills” and became hopeless.
“I was in a dark place mentally. I think being in a place like that does more damage than it helps you.”
Being placed in the institution severed his relationship with his mom, though Collin says they didn’t have “much of a relationship” with Kate prior, either.
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Kate and Jon first became parents with the birth of twins Maddy and Cara in 2000. In 2004, they welcomed sextuplets Alexis, Aaden, Hannah, Leah, Joel, and Collin. Collin and Hannah currently reside with Jon, and the relationship between all the siblings remains fractured.
Growing emotional while discussing his estrangement from his siblings, Collin says he hopes to one day have a relationship with them as well as his mother. He shares that he’s resilient and has come out “on top” of his negative experiences—and that he even plans to become a Marine.
“My one message to everybody, to the world, in general, is just be kind to people,” he said. “It’s really not that hard, you know? Be kind, talk to people, hear other people’s stories, just spread kindness.”