Story Time

Seven Years After This Divorced Mom Abandoned Her Kids, Her Heartbroken Daughter Turned The Tables

Divorce can disrupt even the most seemingly stable of relationships, and its consequences can prove devastating. Indeed, after the breakup of a marriage, one clan from Leander, Texas, was never the same again. When the kids of the family finally only came face to face with their mother again, however, their reunion was eye-opening, and the Texan children’s situation first came to national attention after they were invited onto The Oprah Winfrey Show. They made their first appearance on the screen back in 2007. The family’s played affected Winfrey so much, however, that their story would be revisited five years later. In 2007, though, viewers first met Daisy, then eleven years old, and Chris, then seven. They were joined on Winfrey’s couch by their father, Jim, who had been raising his kids by himself since his divorce. And as it turned out, the segment in which they appeared would be an emotional one. The children’s mom, Misty, was notable for her absence on the show, however, and there was a good reason for that.

She and Jim had gone through their divorce when Daisy and Chris were only nine and five years old, respectively, and as a result, Misty had distanced herself from her son and daughter. Daisy and Chris hadn’t seen their mom at all after she had left, in fact, and that state of affairs left Daisy in particular, having to grow up fast. Indeed, as the girl would later reveal, she became something of a substitute mother for Kris, making meals for her younger brother, for instance. And when the kids appeared on The Oprah Winfrey Show, they and their father had a heart to heart conversation with the host about what they had been through there. Chris was seen beside himself with tears. Daisy, Meanwhile, shared a letter that she had written expressing everything she felt about her mom’s disappearance. I miss you so much. I wish you were here for our girls day out where we went shopping and got our nails done.

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Let me read it. Let me read it for you. Okay? We’re doing good. Let me read it. It’s okay if I read it. Okay. I miss baking cookies as a family, and you helping us do our homework. I still love you, mom. But what you did in the past makes me not love you so much like I used to. I just wish the divorce never happened and you never did what you did. Daddy always says it’s never my fault that you left, but sometimes I think it is. I know someday you will regret it. And I hope you’ve learned your lesson. Love, Daisy.

Yet while the family segment likely proved a tearjerking one for the audience at home, it ended up having a particularly significant impact on Winfrey herself. In fact, Daisy and Chris’s story moved the host so much that it led her to find out how they were getting on years later, and it turned out that in the interim, Jim had started to receive correspondence from Misty. At that time, she was in county jail as a consequence of missing child support payments, among other charges. Winfrey’s producers heard about the situation, though, and took action. So the family were invited onto one of Winfrey’s shows once again. This time, they would feature on the first episode of Oprah Where Are They Now? In 2012, and in an interesting development, Misty herself was also set to appear. It would be the first time that Daisy and Chris had seen their mom since she had left. In fact, and after encountering a more grownup Daisy and Chris, Winfrey would tell the children how their tail had touched her. Your story is one that lived inside me. I was seared by that moment on the show, she said to them, referring to their 2007 appearance.

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The reunion between Misty and her kids, Meanwhile, was staged inside the jail that the mom was residing in, but at the last minute, Chris decided that he couldn’t go through with the meeting. He didn’t feel that he was ready to face the woman who had left him. At the tender age of five, however, Daisy was on a different page, and so the now 16 year old chose to see the person to whom she had written a heartfelt letter all those years ago. What’s more, she wanted to ask her mother for something that she felt was long overdue. To make that request, though, Daisy first had to face Misty so hand in hand with a counselor, she walked into the room in which her mom was sitting. Winfrey was close behind and sat down next to the teenager, holding her hand tightly. It was a situation that Daisy would quip felt kind of awkward. When Winfrey asked Misty how it felt to see her daughter again after seven years, however, she tearfully replied overwhelming, confusing. Happiness. Sadness. Then it was time for Daisy to reveal why she had wanted to see her mom after all these years.

I deserve an apology, she declared, and Misty could only agree. You do, she replied. Daisy then continued to explain how hard growing up had been for her. You have not been there for anything. You know who had to teach me how to do girl stuff? Dad, that’s pretty sad and it’s embarrassing, she said. All my memories of you are terrible, the 16 year old added to her mother. In time, though, it was Missy’s turn to speak that a day has gone by when I didn’t think about you and Chris, and I’m sorry for my mistakes. I am truly, truly sorry to you and Christopher because I love you both, she said through tears. Once the conversation came to an end, though, Daisy and her mom shared a hug for a new start, said Daisy before asking her mom to promise that she was on board too. I love you, sobbed Misty. And with that, the meeting was over. But although Misty was released from jail in 2012, she didn’t rush back into Daisy and Chris’s lives. In fact, Oprah, where are they now? Would report that she hadn’t as yet encountered her kids again. After being freed their dad, Jim, would also comment on the show that Misty was the same person she was eight years ago.

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She’s not going to change. And while Misty had since apparently called Jim on a few occasions, she was sadly not prepared to set up another meeting with her kids. Now all that the family can do is persevere with therapy sessions in the hope that they can eventually come to terms with their struggles. But though Daisy didn’t get the happy ending that she had wished for, she can now move on in the knowledge that she tried her very best indeed. Even without a mom nurturing her through life, she has proven herself to be an impressive and strong young woman.