May 28th, 2009
07:06 PM ET
“Daddy, I don’t want you to leave anymore.”
An adorable little girl in braids hugs her father at her fifth birthday party as they share a bittersweet, private moment. It is a heartbreaking scene for any child whose parents are going through a difficult time in their marriage but for this little girl things are more complicated because her life is being played out in front of the entire nation.
The little girl in question is Alexis Gosselin and she is one of the stars of Jon & Kate Plus Eight. Her parents are in the center of a media storm as allegations of affairs on both sides fly left and right and the scene is from the season premiere of their reality TV show.
When the Gosselin sextuplets were born in 2004 they became overnight celebrities. Jon and Kate were already parents to twins Cara and Mady and their brood had grown to eight overnight. TLC followed the family for a series of documentary specials and public interest was so high that a weekly television series followed soon after.
Jon and Kate said that they originally wanted to do the show to keep a record of their children growing up- all of the memories and pictures that they wouldn’t be able to get themselves. It appears that now the show is recording the downfall of a marriage- are viewers still going to want to watch that? The season premiere had record ratings, but the format was drastically different than the usual episodes and fans were taken aback by the shift in focus away from the children and onto Jon and Kate.
The larger question still remains- is it fair for Jon and Kate to be putting their children in front of the camera during this difficult time? What do you think?
Paul Petersen, the President of A Minor Consideration, a children’s advocacy group and former child actor himself joined us on Showbiz Tonight for a fired up debate!
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