Dr. Phil: Robin McGraw Visits Domestic Violence Shelter
Robin McGraw, Dr. Phil’s wife, visited a domestic violence shelter called Laura’s House, which serves women and children whose lives have been affected by domestic violence. She took Dr. Phil’s audience to the journey with her.
Shelters are incredibly important and the women and children who are there are kept secret because the husbands can find the women, stalk them, hurt them, or even kill them if secrecy isn’t maintained. For that reason, none of the women and children at the shelter appeared in the segment.
Dr. Phil: Laura’s House Review
Margaret from Laura’s House was Robin’s guide through the facility. She said this was the first time they’d ever let anybody from the outside into their facility.
The facility had lots of cameras and secure doors and windows so that the women felt secure. Robin said that their number one goal was safety and confidentiality. The women are asked to lock up their cellphones and tablets in a secure locker and turn them off so that their husbands can’t track them to the facility. Margaret said that if someone does track them to Laura’s House, they have to ask them to leave within two to three hours for the safety of everyone else in the house. Margaret said this didn’t happen often, but it did happen.
Dr. Phil: Comfortable Dining Area
Laura’s House is beautiful. The dining and kitchen area had a great feeling to it. It felt very comfortable and looked like the kind of place you would want to hang out in. Margaret said they wanted their clients to feel at home at Laura’s House. Robin said she could just see the women cooking and the children sitting down with smiles on their faces.
Margaret said Laura’s House was committed to making the property comfortable-looking and luxurious because they wanted the women to know they thought they were worth it, so that the women would start to believe it.
Dr. Phil: Children’s Therapy Room
Margaret said that it was important to Laura’s House to have the children’s therapy room look like a kid’s place that you would find anywhere so the children feel more normal. They filled the room with toys and art supplies and chalkboards.
Robin said that some of the kids may have had to leave their favorite toys behind because they had to leave in such a hurry. Margaret said that some of the kids had to leave even without their shoes. Margaret also said that each child that comes into Laura’s House gets a stuffed animal from the moment they walk in so that they’re comforted.
Dr. Phil: How Many People Are In A Domestic Violence Shelter?
Right now, Laura’s House has nine mothers and 12 children. They were actually preparing for another family that day. Margaret said that each woman and child has a therapist.
Dr. Phil: Family Therapy Room
Margaret showed the family therapy room, which can be the first place the children have control. The children reenact what happened to them. She said they’ve even had 2-year-olds reenact what happened.
They designed it so that each mother and her children could all be in the same room together at night. Margaret said that many of the women haven’t lived in a place as nice as that, although there are no socio-economic boundaries to domestic violence.
Robin thanked Margaret for letting her and Dr. Phil’s show into the facility.