‘It’s not a bed of roses,’ ‘Teen Mom OG’ star Mackenzie McKee told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY when she was asked about her life after her mom, Angie Douthit’s, tragic passing.
Just before the April 28 episode of Teen Mom OG, during which Mackenzie McKee‘s mom passes away after a lengthy battle with cancer, the 25-year-old spoke to HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY and revealed how she’s been doing since saying goodbye to Angie Douthit. It’s “one day at a time,” Mackenzie told us. “I’m surviving. But I’m kind of glad that the show doesn’t air live because I got some time to gather myself.” Angie passed away in December 2019 at the age of 50, and now four months later, that heartbreaking moment from Mackenzie’s life has played out on TV for the world to see.
But as hard as it was to experience Angie’s passing on camera, Mackenzie believes her mom’s death will help viewers who “are going through this, will go through or have gone through this and they needed this.” She explained, “Since the day [my mom] got sick, I thought mom mom was going to survive. I just did. She was Superwoman and she did just the unimaginable. And I just thought, there’s no way she’d die. The world needs her. She’s powerful. Doctors gave her three months and then she made it to a year. I thought that’s what her story on the show was going to be — she’d survive. I never went [to the worst case scenario] in my mind. So when it did happen, I then realized how hard it was to share my story. My life fell apart after I said yes to returning to the show, but it’s been a humbling experience because people are relating to it.”
And before her mom’s passing, viewers saw that Mackenzie made sure she helped her mom pay off her house. “The first thing she said when she got sick was ‘I’m not scared to die. I know where I’m going’. But then she got scared. She’d say, ‘I’m so scared to leave your dad in debt,'” Mackenzie told us. “[My parents] never had a lot of money. We were happy, but they didn’t have a lot of money. So she was so scared. With her first MTV check, she paid her truck off. And with anything after, she was just paying off debt. And then, two weeks before Christmas, she told us that doctors said she won’t make it to Christmas. ‘But I need to pay off dad’s house. Something needs to happen,’ she said. So I wanted to help.” Against her dad’s wishes, Mackenzie asked her fans to donate what they could. And almost immediately, fans started sending in “thousands” of donations. “Fifty cents, even! [And small donations kept pouring in.],” Mackenzie said. “[My mom] touched that many lives that it added up to enough money to pay the house off. When we told her, you could see all the stress leave her face. She was able to go peacefully. That was her only worry, other than leaving my dad. I was numb. I couldn’t feel my body. It was so emotional.”
Another emotional moment from this week’s episode came when Mackenzie told her son Gannon, 8, that his grandma would never leave the hospital again. It was one of the most emotional scenes we’ve ever seen on the series. “It was hard,” Mackenzie said when recalling that experience with her son and telling us how she managed to stay strong throughout it. “I had this lump in my throat. I’d wonder — am I being fair to the audience by being strong when I just want to break down? You have a different kind of strength, though, when someone calls you mom.”
As for her future, and what’s to come later this season, Mackenzie told us that it won’t be “a bed of roses because the grieving process is strange and sometimes very hard. I’m sharing my story, and… it gets rough.”
New episodes of Teen Mom OG air Tuesdays at 8pm on MTV.