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Door County Cherry

The Blended Bunch

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In a small town in Utah lives a widow and widower who, combined with their 11 children, have formed the modern-day Brady Bunch; Spencer and Erica Shemwell have found love after loss, but blending a family this big can come with some major challenges.

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They seem likeable, one bratty daughter. Sorry, if Erica's first husband was first diagnosed with cancer at 23, why have so many kids? Don't understand that. 

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I don't agree with the name change of Ecria's kids. They can adopt but legally keep their father's last name. 

I didn't catch the time frame all of this happened . From when the deaths occurred to the marriage.

I agree with the grandparents - let the grandparents decide what they want to be called by who. If is their legal first name or a cute version of that - so be it .   Like Mimi from the show that came on before this one. Many grands come up with cute names that fit their personality and family style better than grandmother/grandfather.  

Edited by sATL
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I noticed the town they live in is Lehi Utah, same as where the Sister Wives first started off! Is this a fairly large city? I wonder if they are Mormon? 

Erica's brother gives me a bit of a creepy vibe. He also reminds me of Donny Osmond and her sister a bit of a darker skinned Marie! Is she a tanner? Because she looks really dark compared to the rest of that family. 

I don't know....something about this show seems so fake, even more than the rest of the large family reality ones. I don't think it is going to make it! What do you all think?

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I stopped on this show while channel changing and saw/heard a bunch of screaming kids. I didn't stick around to see if they quieted down. 

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2 hours ago, BradandJanet said:

I stopped on this show while channel changing and saw/heard a bunch of screaming kids. I didn't stick around to see if they quieted down. 

They didn't. 

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The father was getting on my nerves with pushing the kids to be one big happy family.  Those kids deserve to be able to grieve in their own time without the adults in their lives pressing and expecting them to everything all sunshine and rainbows.  

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Thanks Door Country Cherry. I did not know the rules about posting to new forum. Apologies. These people seem nice, a few bratty kids. My first thought, if Erica's first husband was tragically diagnosed with cancer at 23, why have such a large family? 

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19 hours ago, readheaded said:

The father was getting on my nerves with pushing the kids to be one big happy family.  Those kids deserve to be able to grieve in their own time without the adults in their lives pressing and expecting them to everything all sunshine and rainbows.  

I think there are at least three that need to be in some kind of grief counseling as well.  Maybe they already are and they are rightly not airing it to protect the privacy of the children.  There are some obvious struggles and resentments that either Erica and Spencer aren't seeing because there's so many of them or they are hoping the issues resolve themselves with time.

Emma, Erica's oldest daughter, was the first red flag that I saw.  Telling the four-year old, although I'm sure it wasn't intentional, that her grandparents weren't his grandparents and that he shouldn't call them that, was kind of harsh.  He's four.  He just sees his closest step-siblings calling Dave and Paige grandma and grandpa, so he wants to as well.  Not a big deal IMO.  But I absolutely see why it would matter to Emma.  A couple of other comments from her rubbed me the wrong way too.  Again, I don't think she's intentionally trying to be mean, but she could probably benefit from an outlet to talk to.  She definitely isn't going to react well to a change in last name, although I would agree with her on that point.  Spencer can adopt them and they can keep their last name to honor their father.  Emma is all about the separation between the "Means" and the "Shemwells."  She's 10, so she doesn't understand, but that constant separation and counting what belongs to the "Means" versus the "Shemwells" isn't good for any of them.

The 6 year old Tanner is also another one who needs some counseling.  They've already said he's super sensitive, the crying at night, he didn't actually SAY much to be six years old.  The 3, 4, and 5 year olds all had more to say than him.

And then Spencer's only daughter, Hayley? Hannah?  She was definitely mouthy and disrespectful with the "you're not my real sister" and the "you're not my mother" stuff, but she also seemed to be VERY aware of the cameras and "on" for a lot of the time.  She seems like she's the only one where time might be enough to work out her issues.  Her and Erica's daughter Sophie appear to get along pretty well.

Good, and lucky, for the 12-year old boys and the youngest 3 for just clicking and making the best of the situation.  Erica and Spencer need to get better control of those youngest 3 though.  All that yelling and screaming at bedtime?  No, ma'am.

ETA:  The date of the original post is from 2019?!  Has TLC been sitting on this for that long?  I wonder why . . . 

 

Edited by KBrownie
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I just saw the first episode of this show. I didn’t realize it first aired in 2019.  
 

I had a lot of issues with it.  Like how some people don’t realize that children need some peace in their home.  It didn’t seem like the parents put much thought into the kid’s feelings.  That couple hasn’t even known each other long enough to really know what they are truly like. I agree with mom’s brother.  A quick adoption is very risky.  What is they later divorce or one of them dies?  The adoptive parent could move away and the bio family lose all contact.  They need to each get legal advice, as well as input from a child psychologist on this.  
 

TLC seems to think chaos and a bunch of screaming kids running around a house entices viewers. Imo, it’s a big turnoff on this channel.

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2 hours ago, KBrownie said:

And then Spencer's only daughter, Hayley? Hannah?  She was definitely mouthy and disrespectful with the "you're not my real sister" and the "you're not my mother" stuff, but she also seemed to be VERY aware of the cameras and "on" for a lot of the time.  She seems like she's the only one where time might be enough to work out her issues.  Her and Erica's daughter Sophie appear to get along pretty well.

 

Harper. And yes, that child is full of sass.

This show was a hot mess. I did lol when little Bexley said the other two littles were his favorites because "they poop in the bed". It was such a little boy thing to say.

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On 3/17/2021 at 9:54 AM, jacksgirl said:

They seem likeable, one bratty daughter. Sorry, if Erica's first husband was first diagnosed with cancer at 23, why have so many kids? Don't understand that. 

1) They're Mormon.

2) I'd bet he was in severe denial about his mortality.  To his credit, surviving eight years with a glioblastoma is nothing short of miraculous. Either it was found very, very early, or he was in some sort of experimental treatment that prolonged his life exponentially. It is rare to live more than 2 years after being diagnosed with a  glioblastoma.                                                   

Edited by eel21788
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On 3/17/2021 at 2:13 PM, readheaded said:

The father was getting on my nerves with pushing the kids to be one big happy family.  Those kids deserve to be able to grieve in their own time without the adults in their lives pressing and expecting them to everything all sunshine and rainbows.  

After the first episode, I'm done. This show is all kinds of wrong. Going through the grieving process in childhood is an extremely difficult process in private. Expecting them to do it in front of TV cameras for the world to see is beyond inappropriate and unfair. I hope the kids are getting the counseling they need, especially the four who were in the same accident that killed their mother. . . and, no, sitting on a couch conversing with TV show producers is not adequate therapy.

Edited by eel21788
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On 3/17/2021 at 10:54 AM, jacksgirl said:

They seem likeable, one bratty daughter. Sorry, if Erica's first husband was first diagnosed with cancer at 23, why have so many kids? Don't understand that. 

It could be that the couple thought husband would survive, and lived their lives as if he would.       After reading more, it was an awful thing to continue having children, knowing they have a 50/50 chance (each, it's not as if they don't all have the chance of inheriting the gene).  

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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I'm still stuck on changing the last name of Erica's children...  Is there a money reason ?  maybe so they can collect new hubbies social security if he dies? To add them to his health ins plan , hmmm..

Edited by sATL
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8 minutes ago, sATL said:

I'm still stuck on changing the last name of Erica's children...  

According to IMDB, all of their last names are now Shemwell, so the name change must have been allowed to happen.

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After some googling, I’ve found that 4/7 of Erica’s children inherited the lfs gene which gives them a 90% chance of developing cancer in their lifetime. I can’t believe they CHOSE to have more children despite knowing the risks. I’m sorry but this comes off extremely selfish to me considering options like adoption are sitting right there. 

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3 hours ago, eel21788 said:

According to IMDB, all of their last names are now Shemwell, so the name change must have been allowed to happen.

That gives me the sads.

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18 hours ago, TipseyGirl said:

Harper. And yes, that child is full of sass.

This show was a hot mess. I did lol when little Bexley said the other two littles were his favorites because "they poop in the bed". It was such a little boy thing to say.

I can't be critical of Harper.  Her pain, grief, and anger are coming out as sass and defiance, but her "parents" aren't bright or attentive enough to recognize it, hear her, and help her.  Meanwhile her father's moved her across the country, away from everything she ever knew and wants her to shut up and like it.  As if because he's replaced his late wife, his kids should just be happy they have a new mom.  I'm pissed off for her and her siblings.

Edited by readheaded
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4 hours ago, CrazyInAlabama said:

It could be that the couple thought husband would survive, and lived their lives as if he would.      

It was still totally irresponsible. He inherited a gene from his mother that gives you a 100% chance of being diagnosed with certain highly fatal cancers half of which occur before the age of 30. He passed that gene on to 4 of his 7 children. Now those kids are going to have to watch each other die, as if they haven't already been through enough grief in their young lives.

https://fundamentalists.fandom.com/wiki/Means_-_Shemwell_Family

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 It was totally irresponsible to doom your kids to an awful death like that.     Also, why force the name change?    You don't have to all have the same last name for health insurance, or anything else, especially if the new husband adopted the wife's kids.  

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On 3/17/2021 at 9:59 AM, sATL said:

I didn't catch the time frame all of this happened . From when the deaths occurred to the marriage.

Father died 12/2/2016

Mother died 11/13/17

Surviving parents began dating 11/24/2018 and got married 1/22/2019

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They only dated for two months?    That's barely enough time to plan the wedding or work out the logistics of where to live, or anything else. 

 

Edited by CrazyInAlabama
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Have these kids had any therapy? I feel so bad for them and kinda sad that Quinn seems to be the only one thinking about them.

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On 3/18/2021 at 7:58 PM, CrazyInAlabama said:

They only dated for two months?    That's barely enough time to plan the wedding or work out the logistics of where to live, or anything else. 

 

And worse, it was online since Spencer lived in Virginia and Erica in Utah.  Those poor kids didn't get to know each other or their new "parent" at all before having to learn to live together while grieving their dead parent.  And, Spencer's poor kids had a cross-country move thrown into the mix.  That's a whole lot to ask of kids, especially to indulge the parents' relationship.

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On 3/18/2021 at 7:05 PM, eel21788 said:

It was still totally irresponsible. He inherited a gene from his mother that gives you a 100% chance of being diagnosed with certain highly fatal cancers half of which occur before the age of 30. He passed that gene on to 4 of his 7 children. Now those kids are going to have to watch each other die, as if they haven't already been through enough grief in their young lives.

https://fundamentalists.fandom.com/wiki/Means_-_Shemwell_Family

from above site - I didn't know Aimee was pregnant at time of the accident...😪

image.thumb.png.d29910fb6ab98cdc3cdd79b884870876.png

the footnote 7 is this news story link: https://royalexaminer.com/pregnant-linden-woman-unborn-child-die-warren-county-crash/

Edited by sATL
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I think this show is a hot mess. I clicked on after seeing previews and had to fastforward through all the screaming children. There is literally nothing interesting about this family, other than that they’re another big Mormon family on TV.

It’s obvious Erica and Spencer made little effort to ease their kids into this situation and the oldest daughter’s resentment doesn’t surprise me one bit. She’s 10 so she doesn’t have much of a filter yet but I can hardly blame her for expressing herself. She may come off bratty but it doesn't seem like she's been given an outlet to speak her mind, and now there's these cameras in her house. They moved way too quickly into wanting to get together and be "one big blended family" without much thought to their kids, it feels very very fake. Also the whole premise essentially hinges exploiting their spouses death to be on this show, it does not sit right with me.

also the name change definitely pisses me off. There is no reason why those kids shouldn't keep their father's surname, or at least be allowed the choice. It's unbelievable how selfish these people are. I feel for all of the kids.

Edited by overtherainbow
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TLC audiences, meet the Shemwell family!

This March, viewers will be officially introduced to Erica and Spencer Shemwell, who are both widowed, and their combined 11 children on the network's new series, The Blended Bunch.

Prior to the couple's introduction, mother of seven Erica — mom to Landon, 12, Emma, 10, Lily, 9, Sophie, 8, Tanner, 6, Amelia, 5, and Caleb, 3 — lost her husband, Tony, to cancer, while Spencer's wife Aimee — with whom he shared Brayden, 12, Harper, 8, Avery, 6, and Bexley, 4 — died in a car crash.

"My husband, Tony, passed away from brain cancer three years ago — I feel like my heart was ripped out of my chest," Erica, 33, says in the series supertease, exclusively debuted by PEOPLE.

Spencer, 32, remembers the heart-wrenching moment he had to tell his kids about Aimee's death. "I said, 'Mommy passed away,'" he tearfully recalls. "I thought there was no way that I could ever love anyone like Aimee."

I didn't see a thread for this show about a couple of widowed lunatics with 11 children between them living in Sister Wives' territory Lehi, Utah about a lovely blended family.  

Anyone else watching?  

Where does TLC find all of these fucking weirdoes with gaggles of kids lovely families?

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Good question--where does TLC find these people?  I was ready to change the channel after about 15 minutes but decided to stick it out to the end.  I don't understand why mother Erica continued to have so many children year after year after her husband had been diagnosed with brain cancer.  Seven kids is a bit much within 10 years.  She must have known she would end up a widow and be solely responsible for these kids.  

I'm not all that knowledgeable about Social Security benefits, but I suspect both Spencer and Erica are collecting SS benefits as widow/widower for the 11 children and will until the kids become adults.  Without that income, I don't see how Spencer as the only working adult in this marriage would be able to afford to support all those people.  They probably qualify for other benefits as well such as SNAP food stamps.  With his being self-employed, their health insurance must be astronomical unless there are government benefits for that as well.  They probably pay little to no income tax which would be a big help to them.

As far as the kids, there was one girl about 8 or so who is either deeply affected by the loss of her mom or dad (don't remember who she lost) and needs therapy or is the brattiest, meanest kid ever.  Obviously deeply hurting.

I plan to watch the next episode and then make a decision whether to watch further episodes or not.

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On 3/20/2021 at 12:38 PM, seasons said:

So Spencer was driving, made the left turn during a red light and they were hit by the truck that had the green light? So he is at fault?!?

Yeah. If you're going to play chicken in an SUV, don't do it with a semi.

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Once adopted, are they still entitled to the deceased parents’s social security benefits?  I’m not sure.  
 

I can’t bare to watch this show.  It’s just so sad to see parents ignore their children’s feelings without any real thought.  

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 I don't understand why mother Erica continued to have so many children year after year after her husband had been diagnosed with brain cancer. 

I know of a Mormon woman who had six children.  She got pregnant with the last one after being diagnosed with ALS, so she knew she wouldn't be around for her.  She felt there was a soul still there that needed to be born.  I guess it's a Mormon thing.

I do not understand how these parents could "date" for just two months, then get married without even considering how the children would handle it.  Those poor kids have been through the wringer and deserve better.  I get the uncomfortable feeling that the whole thing was done  with a TLC show in mind.

Putting tweens' "birds and the bees" talk on national TV is just cruel (even if it was just for the show and not real).  Oh yeah, their friends won't tease them at all.

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Does new hubby know about  grave marker with 1st hubby?

image.png.8ddbf32136629018554c9bc74db03d37.png

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Interesting that there is a pentagram on the headstone.  I'm sure it means something different to them, but I associate it with Satanism.

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3 minutes ago, camom said:

Interesting that there is a pentagram on the headstone.  I'm sure it means something different to them, but I associate it with Satanism.

 I am still googling what that is ( in between commenting on Outdaughtered's thread) ... the symbol caught my eye before seeing Erica's name..

Edited by sATL
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I searched the pentagrams online, and the LDS church used the tilted pentagram for many years, even during their period in Illinois, and it symbolizes the wounds of Jesus.      

 

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They should have never filmed this shit show. I feel bad for those poor kids who are clearly not over the grieving process. And why is her brother stalking the husband and questioning him when he doesn't even seem to want to get to know him. The two little boys are just too adorable

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1 hour ago, Mahamid Frauded Me said:

They should have never filmed this shit show. I feel bad for those poor kids who are clearly not over the grieving process. And why is her brother stalking the husband and questioning him when he doesn't even seem to want to get to know him. The two little boys are just too adorable

I question both her brother and her parents too. It's like they are actively trying to break them up. Her brother can claim he's worried about her all he wants, but he acts like a jilted ex and it's just creepy. And her parents, especially her mom, are basically telling Spencer's kids that they don't matter. I saw Erica's parents tell a small kid, who's like 3 years old, not to call them grandma or grandpa last week, and this week she's trying to spin it that they didn't want to step on toes. Yeah, bullshit. You and your son aren't happy with the quick marriage and you're basically punishing toddlers for it. I noticed Erica's mom repeatedly said they didn't have a blended family, they don't know how it works. Bullshit again. I can guarantee if Erica had died, her family would be super pissed if her husband had remarried and his new wife's family treated the kids the way they are treating Spencer's kids. There's obviously tension between at least the 2 oldest girls, and it looks obvious that Erica's family is stoking that fire instead of trying to encourage the girls to get along. I felt bad for dead mom's family that Erica's family were pretty much flat out rude to them when they visit. Again, in the name of "not stepping on toes", but if you can't muster up the strength to spend a few minutes getting to know dead mom's parents, that says a lot about you. 

Edited by Fostersmom
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21 hours ago, Fostersmom said:

I question both her brother and her parents too. It's like they are actively trying to break them up. Her brother can claim he's worried about her all he wants, but he acts like a jilted ex and it's just creepy. And her parents, especially her mom, are basically telling Spencer's kids that they don't matter. I saw Erica's parents tell a small kid, who's like 3 years old, not to call them grandma or grandpa last week, and this week she's trying to spin it that they didn't want to step on toes. Yeah, bullshit. You and your son aren't happy with the quick marriage and you're basically punishing toddlers for it. I noticed Erica's mom repeatedly said they didn't have a blended family, they don't know how it works. Bullshit again. I can guarantee if Erica had died, her family would be super pissed if her husband had remarried and his new wife's family treated the kids the way they are treating Spencer's kids. There's obviously tension between at least the 2 oldest girls, and it looks obvious that Erica's family is stoking that fire instead of trying to encourage the girls to get along. I felt bad for dead mom's family that Erica's family were pretty much flat out rude to them when they visit. Again, in the name of "not stepping on toes", but if you can't muster up the strength to spend a few minutes getting to know dead mom's parents, that says a lot about you. 

In a way he has been jilted.

For the few short years between the death and the remarriage - she/kids probably leaned on him as a psudo-father figure. Didn't he also move later out to Utah or closer to her home, after the parents and sister did ? Then I think in one of the flashbacks, he and Erica also were close growing up , due to their ages. 

I also think it is pretty tacky for the grands to go completely MIA when Amy's parents visit.

  • First of all,  no one is expecting them to become best friends - just keep it cordial.  Shake hands, make small talk, raise a glass, eat a meal and keep it moving. Extend and accept the olive branch.
  • Secondly - Amy's parents are making a long distance, planned and expensive trips out - and it seemed to be infrequently - so its not like they are around all of the time.
  • Third - Amy passed. Its not like it was an  back-bedded secret affair/or high profile divorce that caused Erica to remarry. Death due you part also extends to grands and other family members. 

It makes me wonder if Erica's family discussed with her not to remarry, at all - that she should remain a widow. or remain a widow longer. I hate throw $$ into this equation - but did she get some large insurance-death payout, that has made her family feel more jilted ? Was there another potential beau, which they picked out,  that Erica could have married?

I wonder do we get to see the late husband's family come for a visit. How will Erica's parents treat them ?

Edited by sATL
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13 hours ago, Fostersmom said:

I question both her brother and her parents too. It's like they are actively trying to break them up. Her brother can claim he's worried about her all he wants, but he acts like a jilted ex and it's just creepy. And her parents, especially her mom, are basically telling Spencer's kids that they don't matter. I saw Erica's parents tell a small kid, who's like 3 years old, not to call them grandma or grandpa last week, and this week she's trying to spin it that they didn't want to step on toes. Yeah, bullshit. You and your son aren't happy with the quick marriage and you're basically punishing toddlers for it. I noticed Erica's mom repeatedly said they didn't have a blended family, they don't know how it works. Bullshit again. I can guarantee if Erica had died, her family would be super pissed if her husband had remarried and his new wife's family treated the kids the way they are treating Spencer's kids. There's obviously tension between at least the 2 oldest girls, and it looks obvious that Erica's family is stoking that fire instead of trying to encourage the girls to get along. I felt bad for dead mom's family that Erica's family were pretty much flat out rude to them when they visit. Again, in the name of "not stepping on toes", but if you can't muster up the strength to spend a few minutes getting to know dead mom's parents, that says a lot about you. 

When Aimee's mother was talking about Aimee's death and started crying, I was disgusted that Erica couldn't drag her ass off of the sofa and go hug that poor grieving mother.

Erica is a mother herself 7 (11?) times over, yet she couldn't muster up any compassion for this woman crying about the loss of her daughter.  The bitch couldn't even fake it for the cameras.

That's one icy-hearted bitch.  And her parents and brother are fucking creepy as well.  

When her brother said, "Erica does everything and Spencer does his own thing all day."  

Yeah, if by his "own thing," you mean going out to make a living to support not only his four kids, but Erica and her brood as well.

No, Brother Erica, Spencer would not know your sister is having anxiety attacks if she doesn't tell him.  There's so much commotion in that goddamned house that a herd of wild buffalo could stampede through unnoticed.  Your precious sister going into her room for a few minutes to calm herself down would go completely under the radar, especially when she walks around with a maniacal smile on her face saying how everything is fine.  

Good gawd almighty, I'm glad I'm not their neighbor when all those kids go out to play.

It would take GET OFF OF MY LAWN to a whole new level.  😮 

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Will someone please tell Erica’s mother to brush her hair.

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I'm 3/4 through the first episode and not sure I want to finish it.

Agreeing with others upthread, my first question was that if Erica's first husband was diagnosed with the brain tumor at age 23, what would make them decide to have SEVEN kids with a diagnosis like this?

There is something so OFF about the entire scenario. The speed with which they met and married. Spencer uprooting his 4 children to move in with a woman with 7 of his own across country. They still both seem so not over the loss of their first spouses. Although they appear "in love", I can't imagine having those feelings for someone and the hurt of losing my spouse still so fresh. And throwing all those kids together and expecting everyone to "make nice". I went through a divorce and my kids were 4 and 15. Although I started dating fairly soon (the divorce was my idea) there was NO WAY I was going to step into a new relationship quickly, especially if the new guy were to have kids. I didn't meet my current husband until my youngest was 7.5 and luckily he didn't have any children of his own. If he had had kids, we might have taken things even slower. 

The constant chaos in the house (those three little ones, the "ABC's", oiy...), the creepy Uncle, the forced "Brady Bunch" ideals of Erica and Spencer, the "everything's fine" and forced smile of Erica, are totally off-putting. 

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Considering the ages of the parents, are there any rumors about more kids?    That would really make both sets of kids feel abandoned.   If the parents handle additional kids as badly as they handled remarrying, and moving, and throwing the kids together, and the adoption, I'm betting they would totally focus on the younger ones, and expect the older ones to turn into the child raisers, the way the Duggars did. 

People can love and cherish so many, so cutting out grandparents because they're not biological relatives is mean, and rotten.

Edited by CrazyInAlabama

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I really didn't understand the whole Grandma/Grandpa thing.

In many cultures addressing  a person of a certain age as Grandma or Grandpa is a given regardless if they are related to you.  Same as kids calling strangers Auntie or Uncle - it's a respect thing.

These people are just forcing a situation and the kids are paying for it.

I wonder why the rush to marry.

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I'd have enjoyed this show had they invited Iyanya to unfluck their family or had pre-marital counseling shown. Then give those poor kids privacy and help to adjust to several of the most stressful life changes around. Idiots.

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Ugh. I don't know, guys. This show just feels icky to me. Based on too much tragedy. Sure it is good to see that life has to go on and families can survive, even thrive again. But these people all need counseling but I kind of doubt that is happening.

 

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On 3/18/2021 at 3:01 PM, Coool.beanzz said:

After some googling, I’ve found that 4/7 of Erica’s children inherited the lfs gene which gives them a 90% chance of developing cancer in their lifetime. I can’t believe they CHOSE to have more children despite knowing the risks. I’m sorry but this comes off extremely selfish to me considering options like adoption are sitting right there. 

There's a long-form article  from 2014 about Tony's family that gives more context about their sad history with LFS. Apparently Tony's uncles and aunts begged him and Erica to go the IVF route to screen embryos for the gene and make sure any kids wouldn't have LFS, but Tony and Erica weren't having any of that:

Quote

At Bryce’s funeral, Jenni’s father, Jim Boud, urged the family to weed out the mutant gene, recommending in-vitro as a way to circumvent the suffering that otherwise awaited future generations. The grandchildren — Jenni’s nieces and nephews — have chosen to have children naturally anyway. Those with LFS have produced eight children; four of them have the gene, two do not and two are too young to be tested.

One grandson, Tony Means, discussed the in-vitro procedure with Jenni, but opted not to do it despite emotional pleas from Jenni and other aunts and uncles. He knew his late mother had had the mutant gene, but he didn’t know that he carried it himself when his wife, Erica, bore their first child. After a test revealed that Tony had the gene, he and Erica chose not to have the in-vitro procedure and had four children. Three of his five children have the gene and one of them, a 5-year-old girl, has a brain tumor.

On a Facebook page for an LFS support group, someone asked the group at large if anyone had chosen to have babies after a family member had been diagnosed with LFS. Tony responded: “After lots of thought and prayer, we chose to have four more children. Two of those four have LFS, as does my oldest son. It’s not easy, but we wouldn’t change our choice. Some people think we are stupid, crazy or even selfish, but this was our choice to make and we did so fully aware of the consequences and with our trust in God because it’s all in His hands anyway. You do what you feel is best and don’t look back.”

The article also discusses another Thompson family relative, Ricky, who died at 50 and whose two biological children died of cancer at the respective ages of 23 and 9. Bryce and his wife Jenni had one child (Kade) before they knew Bryce had the gene, who turned out not to have the gene, and then did IVF for their next children so that they could screen the embryos for LFS.

To be entirely fair to Tony, other grandchildren in the Thompson family also decided to forgo IVF and produced children with the LFS gene, but seriously, what the fuck?

Edited by Eyes High
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On 3/23/2021 at 10:12 PM, SunnyBeBe said:
On 3/23/2021 at 10:12 PM, SunnyBeBe said:

Once adopted, are they still entitled to the deceased parents’s social security benefits?  I’m not sure.  
 

I can’t bare to watch this show.  It’s just so sad to see parents ignore their children’s feelings without any real thought.  

MY RESPONSE TO SUNNYBEBE IS BELOW. SORRY, I MESSED UP THE QUOTE BOX AND CANT FIX IT. 


I can’t bold the first paragraph(messed up my quoting)of Sunnybebe’s post but the answer is ‘no.’    

My bonus daughter was married and had two children with someone who was arrested on serious, federal charges regarding drug smuggling about two years after their divorce. When the extent of his crimes was reported on for a few months, she petitioned the court to sever his parental rights, which was granted once the judge was briefed by a federal prosecutor as to what all he had done and that they couldn’t guarantee which, if any charges, he might be found innocent of and that as a ‘free man’ someday, he’d still be allowed to see the children.

She got remarried and had two more children with her new husband. When she, new hubby AND the two pre-teen children wanted new hubby to adopt them, they saw the attorney again. They were advised that her current husband shouldn’t adopt them or else the children would have no SS benefits to claim if the felon ‘passed away,’ as those of his ilk who serve their time and are released find themselves targets of the other criminals who he testified against. You get the picture. They were told to petition the court for a legal name change only, which they did and it was granted. Their family of six were officially the ‘Smiths.’
 

Hand to God, the felon was released several months ago and was killed two Saturday nights ago in a one car ‘accident’ out on a country, dirt road. He’d ‘simply’ run into the embankment on the two lane dirty road and died. He was found the next morning by a motorist. He’s been in the ground less than two weeks. 
 

My bonus daughter already has an appointment at the SS Office in mid-April to file for the benefits his children are entitled to. 
 

As for Erica and Spencer, the name change of the children, if any, who wanted to do it is what should have happened IMO. Even if they had to petition the court a few times as various children through the years were ready to be called ‘Shemwell.’ It’s a relatively inexpensive fix...less than $500 for filing fees and attorney representation in my bonus daughter’s case. 
 

This show is some kind of kooky and I’m being nice about it to stop there. 

 

Edited by HahYallDoin · Reason: Ugh, I STILL can’t fix the quote properly and also added the bolded to avoid confusion.
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