The newly made-over mom of eight is looking for romance but her dream guy sounds like a drill sergeant! Is that really what the Gosselettes need?
If Kate Gosselin was to write a personal ad for the man of her dreams, it wouldn’t include anything about candlelit dinners or moonlit walks along the sand. Oh no. It would sound something like: Single mother of eight seeks drill sergeant. Must have loud voice and be into yelling!
The 35-year-old tells Us Weekly that she wants “a tough guy, like a cop, to whip my kids into shape.” Yikes! That sounds like a direct slam on her ex, Jon Gosselin, who is the opposite of a tough guy. In fact he’s sort of soft and squishy.
Kate obviously comes from the tough love camp, as anyone who has seen her TV shows will know. Remember last year when her daughter Mady, 9, said she was thirsty and Kate ignored her, took a sip from a bottle of water and then placed it out of Mady’s reach? Her daughter tearfully cried, “You’re really really mean!” Kate’s retort? “Be quiet.”
Experts are concerned about Kate’s description of her “perfect” man. “Tough love is sort of a misguided attempt to discipline kids when they really need a combination of limits and parental affection and love and nurturing,” says pediatric psychiatrist Dr. Susan Abbott.
She suggests that Kate is looking for someone who’s the opposite of her laid-back ex-husband because she feels like she wants to make a better choice and “find a real partner who can love her kids and structure them.”
But bringing a tough guy into her family could also totally backfire. “She should not be looking to hook a guy who is going to be her children’s disciplinarian. That’s Jon and Kate’s job,” says relationship expert Dr. Gilda Carle. “How long will it be before the children turn around and say, ‘You’re not my father!’”
What Kate should be doing is making an effort to get along with her ex and co-parent her children with him.
“I hope she’s not looking for someone else to be the parent in the situation,” says Dr. Abbott. “Divorced or not, Jon and Kate should be working together in all aspects of parenting.”
But Dr. Carle has some tough love of her own for Kate: “Do the work you’re supposed to do as a mother!” She says that Kate should be concentrating more on her children and less on a new relationship. “She shouldn’t be looking for any guy! If she’s out parading around looking for a man, her children are going to be left without a mother who’s emotionally present.”
And after the year those kids have had, that’s the last thing they need.