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Season 9 Reunion Part 1

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It was interesting that Jen and Larry (inadvertently) kind of dropped the "Ryan is fine!" conceit. Jen's tearful comment that she knew Maci would never abandon Bentley if he were an addict and Larry's vehement insistence that they never let Ryan threaten Bentley's safety were telling. I think Larry meant Bentley's physical safety and was responding to people worrying that they would let Ryan drive B somewhere or something, which, apparently, Jen and Larry at least tried to prevent from ever happening. But Ryan is supposed to be a sober and loving dad, so why would that be necessary? Ryan might cuss them out because, according to him, they should have said that Ryan has turned his life around and it's horrible how Maci lies about him and tries to make him look bad.

They're very dysfunctional and they need to go to Al-Anon, but I feel bad for Jen and Larry. They are caught in the middle and Ryan is a horrible, manipulative person. Some addicts are lovely, kind people, but he's just an asshole. Larry seems like kind of a dick, but Maci and Taylor are dicks too.

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I...don’t think Amber misheard Kristina’s statement about being a bonus mom. I think Amber is literally so self-absorbed and delusional that she’s mad Kristina didn’t say MORE to defend Amber. 
 

I think Amber wanted Kristina to gush about her, like, “Oh no, I’m just the bonus mom. Your real mom is Amber and you know she loves you so much and she has done so much for you...yada, yada, yada.”

 

When it comes to the Bentley situation, I think Maci and Taylor would be fine with them seeing Bentley more, IF Jen and Larry could keep their relationship with Bentley 100% separate from their relationship with Ryan. But they just can’t seem to do that. They could have their cake and eat it too, but they’re too busy trying to force Bentley over to his father’s house, to hug Ryan, etc.

 

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8 hours ago, Vandy10 said:

I...don’t think Amber misheard Kristina’s statement about being a bonus mom. I think Amber is literally so self-absorbed and delusional that she’s mad Kristina didn’t say MORE to defend Amber. 
 

I think Amber wanted Kristina to gush about her, like, “Oh no, I’m just the bonus mom. Your real mom is Amber and you know she loves you so much and she has done so much for you...yada, yada, yada.”

 

When it comes to the Bentley situation, I think Maci and Taylor would be fine with them seeing Bentley more, IF Jen and Larry could keep their relationship with Bentley 100% separate from their relationship with Ryan. But they just can’t seem to do that. They could have their cake and eat it too, but they’re too busy trying to force Bentley over to his father’s house, to hug Ryan, etc.

 

Agree. I think the only reason Amber misunderstood what Kristina said (which was perfectly clear) was because Amber’s so self-centered that she assumes every statement beginning with “I” is about her.

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It still blows my mind that Amber thinks that it is Gary and Kristina's job to defend her and paint her in a positive light. They actually have done a pretty good job of how they handle her and Amber thinks they should do more? Meanwhile she does less and less. I don't understand her thinking at all. She is never around her kids, how can the other parent and his wife do more when the other person won't even try and thinks every one else should do it all.

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19 hours ago, TheRealT said:

It was interesting that Jen and Larry (inadvertently) kind of dropped the "Ryan is fine!" conceit. Jen's tearful comment that she knew Maci would never abandon Bentley if he were an addict and Larry's vehement insistence that they never let Ryan threaten Bentley's safety were telling. I think Larry meant Bentley's physical safety and was responding to people worrying that they would let Ryan drive B somewhere or something, which, apparently, Jen and Larry at least tried to prevent from ever happening. But Ryan is supposed to be a sober and loving dad, so why would that be necessary? Ryan might cuss them out because, according to him, they should have said that Ryan has turned his life around and it's horrible how Maci lies about him and tries to make him look bad.

They're very dysfunctional and they need to go to Al-Anon, but I feel bad for Jen and Larry. They are caught in the middle and Ryan is a horrible, manipulative person. Some addicts are lovely, kind people, but he's just an asshole. Larry seems like kind of a dick, but Maci and Taylor are dicks too.

I feel nothing but sympathy for Jen and Larry.  They are absolutely needing to go to Al-Anon, I hope they have looked into it.  It could teach them that unconditional love doesn't mean unconditional access.  They are trying to do what is right for their son, knowing he has a problem, and trying to do what is right for Bentley - they just don't know how to go about it.

I have said this before, I think being the parent of an addict is a horror show, my heart breaks for parents of addicts.  The person you love is very ill, killing himself, and there is nothing you can do but love them and try to set boundaries.  I think Larry is worn down by all of the crap Ryan has put them through, and he is sad and angry.

Also I fucking hate Maci and Taylor.  Bentley DID NOT WANT TO TALK ABOUT his therapy on tv.  So Maci calls the therapist to discuss it.  She knows that there is nothing else to film so she is making a choice and putting this on tv.  That is the ultimate low even for this show.

Taylor on his high horse benefits from Bentley's pain. 

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11 hours ago, heatherchandler said:

I feel nothing but sympathy for Jen and Larry.  They are absolutely needing to go to Al-Anon, I hope they have looked into it.  It could teach them that unconditional love doesn't mean unconditional access.  They are trying to do what is right for their son, knowing he has a problem, and trying to do what is right for Bentley - they just don't know how to go about it.

I have said this before, I think being the parent of an addict is a horror show, my heart breaks for parents of addicts.  The person you love is very ill, killing himself, and there is nothing you can do but love them and try to set boundaries.  I think Larry is worn down by all of the crap Ryan has put them through, and he is sad and angry.

Also I fucking hate Maci and Taylor.  Bentley DID NOT WANT TO TALK ABOUT his therapy on tv.  So Maci calls the therapist to discuss it.  She knows that there is nothing else to film so she is making a choice and putting this on tv.  That is the ultimate low even for this show.

Taylor on his high horse benefits from Bentley's pain. 

ITA. I have hated Maci for a a long while, but her using Bentley's pain over his (non)relationship with his dad for a storyline is a new low. Taylor wasn't factually wrong about anything he said, but Drew was (shockingly!) right when he said that Taylor's tirade wasn't in Bentley's best interest. Blind people in Siberia (as well as Jen and Larry) see that Ryan is a shit dad/person. It's totally unnecessary to call him a "worthless excuse for a human being" (or whatever Taylor actually said) to his parents (and, by extension, his bioson Bentley) on international TV over and over. Yes, we get it, Taylor (and Maci). Ryan is a piece of shit as a human being and as a father. He's a drug addict and his whole life is a facade. Maci and Taylor are FAR BETTER PARENTS (because they're parents at all). Ryan is a total loser. He sucks. WE GET IT. Jen and Larry get it. Bentley gets it. Deaf-blind people in eSwatini get it. It's super fucking clear.

It seems pretty clear that what they want is for Bentley to repudiate Ryan, as well as Jen and Larry, in order to embrace the wonder of McKinney fabulousness. Fair enough, we all have our fantasies. But it seems that Bentley feels a connection to his paternal grandparents, and even to Ryan and Ryan's other kids. B is struggling with how to sort all of that out now, but, from what we've seen on the show, it doesn't seem like he's landing at a place of "Fuck Ryan-- and Memaw and Papaw!" So let him be. Let him figure out what relationship he wants to/can have with his paternal family. That's what super awesome and supportive parents would do, regardless of how it made them feel to see Bentley give his family "undeserved" chances or benefits of the doubt. Though Larry's "where were you for the first 4 years?" comment was dumb, it resonated in terms of how J&L's commitment to/love for B originated long before Taylor even knew B existed, which does/should count for something.

Edited by TheRealT
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The thing for me is, nobody would be commenting on Jen and Larry's relationship with Rhine if Bentley wasn't affected. When Jen and Larry made the comparison to how Maci would feel if Bentley later developed similar issues, it wouldn't be a fair comparison unless Bentley had a child. That's the whole point, here. Handle your addict son however you see fit, but it becomes everyone else's business when a grandchild is involved. 

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22 hours ago, heatherchandler said:

I feel nothing but sympathy for Jen and Larry.  They are absolutely needing to go to Al-Anon, I hope they have looked into it.  It could teach them that unconditional love doesn't mean unconditional access.  They are trying to do what is right for their son, knowing he has a problem, and trying to do what is right for Bentley - they just don't know how to go about it.

Same.   I can't get up any hate for Jen and Larry.  It's clear they adore Bentley and he adores them - especially Jen.   I always thought it was cool that Maci encouraged that relationship long after Ryan checked out.   I hope everyone can calm down and work it out for Bentley's sake. 

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11 hours ago, TheRealT said:

ITA. I have hated Maci for a a long while, but her using Bentley's pain over his (non)relationship with his dad for a storyline is a new low. Taylor wasn't factually wrong about anything he said, but Drew was (shockingly!) right when he said that Taylor's tirade wasn't in Bentley's best interest. Blind people in Siberia (as well as Jen and Larry) see that Ryan is a shit dad/person. It's totally unnecessary to call him a "worthless excuse for a human being" (or whatever Taylor actually said) to his parents (and, by extension, his bioson Bentley) on international TV over and over. Yes, we get it, Taylor (and Maci). Ryan is a piece of shit as a human being and as a father. He's a drug addict and his whole life is a facade. Maci and Taylor are FAR BETTER PARENTS (because they're parents at all). Ryan is a total loser. He sucks. WE GET IT. Jen and Larry get it. Bentley gets it. Deaf-blind people in eSwatini get it. It's super fucking clear.

It seems pretty clear that what they want is for Bentley to repudiate Ryan, as well as Jen and Larry, in order to embrace the wonder of McKinney fabulousness. Fair enough, we all have our fantasies. But it seems that Bentley feels a connection to his paternal grandparents, and even to Ryan and Ryan's other kids. B is struggling with how to sort all of that out now, but, from what we've seen on the show, it doesn't seem like he's landing at a place of "Fuck Ryan-- and Memaw and Papaw!" So let him be. Let him figure out what relationship he wants to/can have with his paternal family. That's what super awesome and supportive parents would do, regardless of how it made them feel to see Bentley give his family "undeserved" chances or benefits of the doubt. Though Larry's "where were you for the first 4 years?" comment was dumb, it resonated in terms of how J&L's commitment to/love for B originated long before Taylor even knew B existed, which does/should count for something.

They are all worthless excuses for parents for continuing to exploit Bentley on this show, instead of supporting him with jobs of their own. Period.

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Late to the party. Amber can't storm off, she has to give a speech and proclaim Gary is ok, but Kristina is the guilty party. This is all the beginning of the end for any relationship between Leah and Amber. Leah seems like she has friends who are up on all of Amber's social media. Amber bashes Kristina, Leah will know and pull away more. Amber, you are both stupid and stoned. 

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Seems to me that Amber should have a parole officer and/or a CPS case worker checking up on her, no?  After what we saw on reunion 1, I would think, at the very least, a drug test would be in order, if not a full investigation.

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14 minutes ago, salvame said:

Seems to me that Amber should have a parole officer and/or a CPS case worker checking up on her, no?  After what we saw on reunion 1, I would think, at the very least, a drug test would be in order, if not a full investigation

Well, she's not on parole, she doesn't have custody of her kids so no CPS involvement that I can imagine, and she hasn't actually committed any crime. Being loaded isn't a crime, drug possession can be but we don't see that and no one has any legal reason to search her or her home etc.  She is a horrible person but not a person the law would be investigating.  She is just a very visual member of a large community of awful people who exist in the world.

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3 hours ago, Andyourlittledog2 said:

Well, she's not on parole, she doesn't have custody of her kids so no CPS involvement that I can imagine, and she hasn't actually committed any crime. Being loaded isn't a crime, drug possession can be but we don't see that and no one has any legal reason to search her or her home etc.  She is a horrible person but not a person the law would be investigating.  She is just a very visual member of a large community of awful people who exist in the world.

Honestly don't keep up that much with these women (not gonna lie, I used to), but was Amber on parole for the machete incident? 

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13 minutes ago, jacksgirl said:

Honestly don't keep up that much with these women (not gonna lie, I used to), but was Amber on parole for the machete incident? 

From an article about the machete incident, dated October 31, 2019:

7E944DE6-CB4E-4DB3-A6AF-891875C67AAC.jpeg

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9 hours ago, Andyourlittledog2 said:

I haven't counted the exact days but it looks like probation ended also so she is off paper.  Loathsome person, but not legally actionable.

I think it would be April of 2022 ?

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16 hours ago, Andyourlittledog2 said:

Well, she's not on parole, she doesn't have custody of her kids so no CPS involvement that I can imagine, and she hasn't actually committed any crime. Being loaded isn't a crime, drug possession can be but we don't see that and no one has any legal reason to search her or her home etc.  She is a horrible person but not a person the law would be investigating.  She is just a very visual member of a large community of awful people who exist in the world.

Isn’t she still have an open custody case for Baby James?  A GAL would be involved for that, I would assume.  Probably not CPS, tho.  But you are correct as far as she’s probably not under and supervisions or reporting if she is off paper.  Sadly.

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I hope Andrew gets full custody. I hope he gets her house and any other god damn thing he can get from repulsive Amber. 🖕🏻

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On 4/25/2021 at 2:08 PM, salvame said:

Seems to me that Amber should have a parole officer and/or a CPS case worker checking up on her, no?  After what we saw on reunion 1, I would think, at the very least, a drug test would be in order, if not a full investigation.

I think they could drug test that whole Reunion grouping!  I bet there would be lots of surprises!  Dr Drew and Nessa too.  

Then we’ll see who’s coming to Jesus and giving grace!

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I'm guessing that any meds Amber is on are prescribed. Can totally see her dr shopping and taking more than recommended dosages. She couldn't pry her darn eyes open the entire time.

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And really, would it have been out of line for someone to ask her (amber) if she was feeling ill or was running a fever as she seemed to be so out of it? And then maybe ask if she could possibly open her eyes? She does have squinting eyes normally but this was anything but normal. It is offensive the more I think about and read about it- that they went along with her act and didn't even mention it. And look, she stormed off anyway so what 's the problem?

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On 4/23/2021 at 1:33 AM, Vandy10 said:

When it comes to the Bentley situation, I think Maci and Taylor would be fine with them seeing Bentley more, IF Jen and Larry could keep their relationship with Bentley 100% separate from their relationship with Ryan.

I noted that the grandparents kept yelling how unfair it was to THEIR son Ryan and not Bentley.  Maci and Taylor were screaming for their son Bentley.  Big difference.  The kid comes first.

On 4/24/2021 at 2:18 PM, Cosmocrush said:

Same.   I can't get up any hate for Jen and Larry.  It's clear they adore Bentley and he adores them - especially Jen.   I always thought it was cool that Maci encouraged that relationship long after Ryan checked out.   I hope everyone can calm down and work it out for Bentley's sake. 

Bentley does adore them and they have screwed him over at every chance to spend time with them.  They are more worried about their baby Ryan than they are about Bentley.

On 4/24/2021 at 3:15 AM, TheRealT said:

He sucks. WE GET IT. Jen and Larry get it.

No.they.don't.  It's all about Ryan and screw the child and his feelings.

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On 5/4/2021 at 1:11 PM, jumper sage said:

I noted that the grandparents kept yelling how unfair it was to THEIR son Ryan and not Bentley.  Maci and Taylor were screaming for their son Bentley.  Big difference.  The kid comes first.

Bentley does adore them and they have screwed him over at every chance to spend time with them.  They are more worried about their baby Ryan than they are about Bentley.

No.they.don't.  It's all about Ryan and screw the child and his feelings.

I didn’t hear that at all, I heard Jen and Larry say that they love their son and don’t want to badmouth him on tv.  They know he’s a jerk and a loser, but he is their son.  

I wouldn’t trash my son on tv either so not sure why people want them to do that.

They obviously adore Bentley, they are trying to figure out how to be parents of an addict.  It’s living hell.

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On 5/6/2021 at 10:32 PM, heatherchandler said:

I didn’t hear that at all, I heard Jen and Larry say that they love their son and don’t want to badmouth him on tv.  They know he’s a jerk and a loser, but he is their son.  

I wouldn’t trash my son on tv either so not sure why people want them to do that.

They obviously adore Bentley, they are trying to figure out how to be parents of an addict.  It’s living hell.

Jen and Larry clearly were screaming Ryan and not Bently.

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On 4/30/2021 at 9:32 AM, Polliwollidoodle said:

And really, would it have been out of line for someone to ask her (amber) if she was feeling ill or was running a fever as she seemed to be so out of it? And then maybe ask if she could possibly open her eyes? She does have squinting eyes normally but this was anything but normal. It is offensive the more I think about and read about it- that they went along with her act and didn't even mention it. And look, she stormed off anyway so what 's the problem?

Just rewatched the reunion shows.. Drew actually did ask her if she was OK, but she misconstrued that,  just like she did Christina's "bonus mom" - Christina was referring to herself as the bonus mom. Amber is triggered by anyone who calls her out on her bs. She even pushed back on her brother.  She forgets that we have been watching her for all these years. 

I would like to see Leah go to some counseling, much like Bently. Having to interact with someone with substance abuse can really do a number on a kid. 

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Wait a minute, wait a minute. I just finished part 1. Did Taylor say he had a recording? I thought Maci said that those who would have recordings (like Andrew) are narcissists. She’s ok with them now? Lol omg that whole reunion was a joke.

Amber is not a mom. Why is she even on the show? 

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