Dr Phil: Does Münchausen Syndrome By Proxy Affect Kids Later In Life?


Dr Phil: Helicopter Mom Problems

Amy’s kids are embarrassed by their overprotective mother. She doesn’t let them do their own homework and has cost them friendships and life experiences. Amy knows she is a helicopter mom, but her kids are all she has. She’s not sure how to have a life without them so she told them they are not allowed to go away to school or even to sleepovers with friends.

Dr Phil: Does Münchausen Syndrome By Proxy Affect Kids Later In Life?

Amy is afraid of having a life without her children.


Dr Phil: Smothering Your Kids

Chad is embarrassed by his mom. When his friends ask him to hang out and he can’t all he says is “my mom” and they understand. His older brother Robert doesn’t get to do his own homework because Amy does it all for him. Robert said he doesn’t know what he likes to do because he isn’t given the chance to try anything.

Dr Phil: Run Away For Attention

A parent’s job is to prepare their kids, said Dr. Phil, but Amy keeps interjecting her thoughts and feelings. It’s clear that this problem is not the kids, but their mother’s needs and fears. A normal parent and child progression is necessary for kids to grow up. They start out clinging to and relying on their parents, but at a certain age they let go and stand on their own. The more controlling and violent that separation is, the more likely kids are to rebel and resent their parents.

Katelynn ran away from home when she was 14 because she wanted her mom to hear her plea for independence. Amy took it as Katelynn hated her and wanted to leave her. This made Amy cling onto her other kids more. That was never Katelynn’s intention, she just wanted her mom to change.


Dr Phil: Co-Dependency On Kids

When Amy said “I’m all they have” it was actually “They’re all I have.” She is not sure how to have a life without her children, so she holds onto them tightly.

Dr. Phil thinks Amy’s problems are similar to Münchausen Syndrome by proxy. The caregiver, Amy, is exaggerating the dependency and harming her kids. That’s not at all what Amy wants, but she asked Dr. Phil if you’ve never had a life before your kids, how do you have one now?


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