Why Baby Leah Thinks Mom Amber Portwood Is In Jail

Tue, October 9, 2012 6:02pm EST by 12 Comments
Amber Portwood Jail Daughter Leah
Courtesy of MTV, Twitter

Poor Leah! Amber is in jail for five years, and she hasn’t told her daughter the truth yet. She tells Dr. Drew why on the ‘Amber Portwood Behind Bars’ special tonight on MTV — be sure to check HollyBaby.com for our recap.

Troubled Teen Mom star Amber Portwood has been in jail since June 14, but she and her baby daddy Gary Shirley still haven’t told their three-year-old daughter Leah Shirley the truth about where mommy is — in fact, they’ve reportedly told her she’s in Hollywood making a movie!

“Amber and Gary are going with the idea that she is away shooting a film in California,” a source told RadarOnline.com. “They don’t want to tell Leah that she’s actually in prison, because they’re not sure she would understand and don’t want her thinking worse of her mom.”

There’s just a slight problem with their cover story — Amber has been almost as famous for her legal troubles as she has for her reality TV show, so everyone knows where the 22-year-old really is. Including the workers at Leah’s daycare.

“It’s only a matter a time before Leah overhears it, and that has got Amber and Gary in a panic that she will find out what’s going on before they tell her,” the source said.

Amber revealed to Dr. Drew Pinksy during an interview from jail, which airs tonight on MTV, that Leah hasn’t come to visit her yet, and it’s Gary’s fault for not filling out the paperwork.

“She doesn’t understand that I’m in jail,” Amber told to Dr. Drew. “I don’t know what to say — what do you say to a 3-year-old?”

Watch the clip below, and be sure to tune in to MTV tonight at 10/9c to watch the Amber Portwood Behind Bars special.

Get More:
Teen Mom (Season 4), Full Episodes


What do YOU think of Amber and Gary’s cover story HollyMoms?

More Amber Portwood:

  1. Leah Shirley Thinks Mom Amber Portwood Is Making A Movie — Report
  2. Gary Shirley: Keeping Leah From Amber Portwood Is Damaging — Experts Say
  3. Amber Portwood In Tears: ‘I Don’t Even Matter’ To Baby Leah

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Posted at 8:47 AM on December 8, 2012  

I am sorry but I have been put through a similar situation. My birthparents basically threw me away and the 12 years later they wanted to play parents. I know that she is only 3 but She is going to have some issues and when she finds out what really happened and she will she is going to have a lot of questions. It is in her best interest to her is to hear it from her parents instead of someone else who has only see and or read what happened.. She is going to have issues because of not having her mother she is going to think that Amber did not love and or want her. Your best bet is to have a therapist standing by when you finally tell that little innocent girl the truth… Parents can not use the excuse as I was a teen parent. I was a mother at 17 19 and 22 and I grew up as soon as I found out that I was pregnant and the only positive person that I had was my boyfriend at the time he is my husband now.. Get the negativity and negative people out of your life. Do what is right for your child/children.. Sorry I had to say this..

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Say what?!

Posted at 11:52 AM on October 26, 2012  

The girl is 3, what the hell is she going to understand anyways?

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Posted at 3:26 AM on October 10, 2012  

Does she need the money – is that why she is doing this “show”?

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Posted at 4:47 PM on October 9, 2012  

Too young…. too young for what, knowing about jail?

So, instead of allowing your child to see her mother and having to actually “parent” by explaining to your child what happens when you make bad choices and that sometimes people have to go to jail but that mommy is working on making herself better…. Instead, you tell her that mommy would rather spend time making a movie, then being with her. No matter what you tell her later on in life, as to why you said what you said, it will never erase or override the Childs inner turmoil of not seeing her mother for 5 years… abandonment issues are the hardest to recover from, they become deeply imbedded and cause major self esteem issues…. Gary, tell your child where her mother is, allow your child to see her mother, be a parent and learn the best ways to help your child understand. There are many books on this subject, read one so your child doesn’t think her mom left “her” to “make a movie”.

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Posted at 1:24 AM on October 10, 2012  

okay there is nothing worng with what they saying to leah,,she would not understand why
her mommy is in jail the lil girl is only 3 years old gary and amber are trying to make the BEST choices for baby leah ,,,,and you have to remember that in the end its really not up to you,,,ya you know what my sons dad was in jail for 2 years ya my son did ask me were his daddy was and why dont he see him you want to know what i told,,, my son i told him that he was off working thats what you tell a 3 yr old ,,,an anther way leah wont forget amber is by pics of her mommy tell leah who she is to her and tell her that her mommy miss her and loves you thats all i got to say

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Posted at 9:48 AM on October 10, 2012  


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Posted at 12:22 AM on October 11, 2012  

and for this child abuser you really dont know what that means do you no i would not thank so my son knows that he is loved very much and maybe you are not a parent be cuz if you were you would no that 3 yr olds would not in no way under stand why there mommy or daddy is in jail ya when they get about 4 or 5 ya tell them but you just dont say to a 3 yr old hey you know your mommy is in jail for 5 yrs and she not going to come and see you that just too wrong p,s WHY DONT YOU LOOK UP WHAT CHILD ABUS IS MAYBE YOU CAN GET SOMETHING OUT OF IT

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Posted at 9:28 PM on October 10, 2012  

So he was supposed to know what to do as soon as this happened?? I agree telling her she’s making a movie isn’t the smartest decision, but, he’s stuck between a rock and a hard place. Leah is 3, no matter what they tell her, truth or lies, there will still be abandonment issues. Amber made her decision to go to jail, she knew what she was doing ahead of time. She has spoken with Leah everyday. She can tell her. Gary is doing the best he knows how to do. It’s a had situation to deal with. Like Amber herself said, how many times can you say mommy is getting help and keep letting her down. It’s NOT Gary’s fault at all. And for her and everyone else to make him out to be the bad guy is ludicris. I like Amber, I have never doubted for a second that she loves Leah. Addiction is a horrible thing, and like Amber said last night, once you are in that life, NOTHING matters. She admitted that Leah didn’t matter to her (not that she didn’t love her, but that she wasn’t important enough to stop for). So why is everyone feeling sorry for her all of a sudden when she isn’t getting to see Leah. Oh she’s forced to be clean now, so he’s wrong….. No one knows what he has spent this last 4 months doing….Maybe he is educating himself on the best options for Leah. Like I said, he shouldn’t know what to do as soon as this happened. He needs some time to decide as a parent, as Leah’s father how he wants to handle the situation, and he can’t just rush things, because oh Amber misses her. She should have thought about that before hand. He is a good father to her and stepped up when Amber wasn’t there, which plenty of men don’t do. I don’t feel sorry for him, I don’t feel sorry for Amber, but I do feel sorry for Leah/

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Posted at 12:13 AM on October 11, 2012  

all im saying is that right now he has to be the mom & dad to leah
and no matter what people thank or say when it comes down to he him self
is going to have to make the best decision for her and just be cuz he tells leah that her mommy
is working dont make him a bad,,,dad it just means that he is trying to look out for her

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Posted at 3:38 PM on October 9, 2012  

Maybe there’s a childrens’ book… “Mommy’s In Jail, Now What?”

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Posted at 11:22 PM on October 12, 2012  

if not you could make one up would not be a bad ida

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Posted at 2:45 PM on October 9, 2012  

I kinda wonder why amber didnt tell her BEFORE going to turn herself in. A “moms going away for a few years and you’ll see her less” would of been good. I think its irresposible of her to not have taken her own initiative. Sad cuz they are the ones who should of done an open adoption.

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