• Tue, Feb 12 2013

Brandi Glanville & Company Give Co-Parenting Families A Bad Name

brandi glanvilleVery rarely, unless there is some form of proven child abuse, do I come right out and call people that I don’t know personally “bad parents.” Will I call Madonna an embarrassing mom? Sure. Will I call some reality television stars exploitative moms? You bet. But saying that someone is a bad parent is a really intense statement, and I don’t think it should be made lightly. With that in mind, I’d like to say that I think Brandi Glanville, LeAnn Rimes & Eddie Cibrian are bad parents. Really bad parents.

I am so exhausted with hearing interview after interview, tweet after tweet, comment after comment about how much this co-parenting trio dislikes one another. Brandi insults LeAnn. LeAnn offends Brandi. Eddie sits back and lets the two women fight over him, as if he’s blameless in the whole mess. It is the very worst that co-parenting has to offer.

The latest installment came on this morning’s Today Show, where Glanville admitted that she doesn’t even speak with her ex anymore, even though they have two young children.  She was repeatedly asked about the affect that her very public feud with her ex and his new wife will have on her children. She bizarrely attempted to assert that she was “always thinking about her kids,” and “only cared about them,” even as she continued to make their lives more difficult by trash-talking Eddie and LeAnn. For his part, Eddie provided the show with a statement about his concern for his kids because of Brandi’s actions, which only furthers the fight and extends his kids’ suffering.

The fact that all of this bickering and bitterness is being done in the name of these two young boys is truly despicable. Anyone with an iota of emotional intelligence would be able to tell you that this only serves to make life harder for these boys, caught in the middle of an adult melodrama.

My daughter’s father and I were never married. We broke up shortly after our little girl’s birth. No, it’s not the same as a cheating spouse, but there were plenty of hurt feelings to go around. But you know what we did? We grew up and we realized that we needed to get along for the sake of our daughter. We treat each other respectfully. We communicate. We do everything in our power to avoid arguments, because we both care about our daughter more than we care about our own pride or ego.

Criticizing your ex or your child’s step-parent in public isn’t just tasteless and rude. It hurts your kids. It puts them in the middle of a tense relationship, struggling to make both sides happy. It makes the lives of your children more difficult. It is the very definition of bad parenting.

Just like most people understand that celebrity marriages rarely mirror the real-life institution that they claim to resemble, I hope that the public knows that co-parenting families don’t have to be like this. I hope enough of us understand that blended families and separated parents do not have to behave like middle schoolers in a cafeteria, forcing people to take sides and airing everyone’s dirty laundry out of spite. That is not how the majority of co-parenting families behave.

Brandi, LeAnn and Eddie are bad parents. But if they would like to get better, they can start by shutting up in the press and concentrating on their kids, instead of their PR campaigns.

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  • Guest

    I got an advance copy of Brandi’s book and read most of it. It’s repetitive, but probably cathartic for her. I don’t agree with the public ex-bashing, but bad parent seems a bit extreme. The book does note that her and her ex do not communicate at the request of LeAnn and exchange the kids via his assistant. Whether that’s true, who knows.

    I’ve never gone through a cheating scandal where my husband married his mistress. I’ve never had to see my kids in pictures with the woman my husband cheated on me with. I can imagine that the hurt would drive me pretty crazy for a bit. For that, I’m slightly sympathetic. I don’t think the publicness of the situation really changes all that much, though. Bitter exes still talk about each other, whether they’re celebrities or not. Kids will pick up on that whether in private or in the papers.

    Lets keep bad parent labels for those who do truly heinous acts. Otherwise, it’s subjective. Some people might think I’m a bad parent because I didn’t breastfeed. Or because I let my kids play outside without keeping an eye in ten 24/7. Or because I write a mommy blog and post enough information about where I live, what type of school my daughter goes to, and what grade she’s in that any person can find her (ahem, Ms. Cross).

  • http://www.facebook.com/houde.veronique Véronique Houde

    If you’re so tired of hearing about this, why do you feel the need to bring it up again? Instead of constantly talking about how dysfunctional you find them, why don’t you talk about couples who have been able to successfully co-parent? Negativity breads negativity.

  • Eileen

    I knew a girl in college whose parents had divorced when she was quite young, and remarried. I don’t know much about their family situation, of course, but the daughter adored both her families, including her younger half-siblings, and was really grateful to have four loving parents looking out for her. I had another friend whose mother, father, and stepmother all worked at the same office – I didn’t ask about that! – and still managed to get along well enough that she could have a great relationship with her mother and also a close relationship with her step-mother. There’s another friend whose mom and step-mom sat together and chatted during their soccer games, and another whose wedding pictures include tons of mother, stepfather, father, and stepmother happily posing with the newly married couple. (and on and on) Glanville/Cibrian/Rimes might be giving blended families a bad name, but in our real lives it should be clear that grown-ups can act like grown-ups and not do everything in their power to make life harder for their kids.

  • the ugly truth

    You know what is more tasteless and rude than criticizing your ex in public? Letting your immature, selfish, nasty new wife do it on Twitter. Brandi is no prize but you really went easy on Eddie and LeAnn, considering they are so narcissistic they blocked Brandi’s phone number so she couldn’t reach them in an emergency and then LeAnn cried victim over Twitter. They are all a total mess but it’s not all Brandi.