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Topic : 02/01 A Difficult Reunion – Part 1

Number of Replies: 193
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Created on : Friday, January 26, 2007, 01:59:13 pm
Author : DrPhilBoard1
Dr. Phil follows the continuing story of Erica, who as a little girl survived the unthinkable. At just 2 years old, she witnessed her father, Mark, murder her mother. Her father spent nearly two decades behind bars for this heinous crime. Now that he has been released from prison, Erica will be reunited with him -- the father who murdered her own mother -- for the first time in over 20 years. In the first of two parts, Dr. Phil arranges a powerful reunion that Erica hopes will bring answers, but instead raises many more questions. When Erica's curiosity turns to anger, her emotions are too much for Mark to bear, and he walks right off the Dr. Phil stage! Tell us what you think!

Find out what happened on the show.

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February 1, 2007, 1:32 pm CST

Understanding Also

   Erica I understand also of your trauma. My aunt fell victim to her husbands demon to alchohol and aimed a shot gun to her and killed her 13 years ago. Until people walk a mile in our shoes they should not judge us for the way we feel. Just getting over it is not easy or deal with it and get on with your life is not easy either. You are a strong woman and know what is going to make you heal. Every day you have to wake up dealing with this situation and wake up rolling with the punches that life has to give. Make your mom proud of you because she is looking down at you and saying " Thats My Girl" . Make the negative a positive!!!!! Carolyn from Elkhart
February 1, 2007, 1:32 pm CST

Forgive and Give Him a CHance

I have gone out with a man for sixteen years, he had a drug problem, and we have children, and I know that even if he had done what your father did to your mother, because of his drug addiction, I know that somewhere deep down your mother still loved him, and would have forgived him from the other side.  Sometimes God gives us lessons to make us become stronger people, and to develop our souls.  Maybe your life lesson this time around is forgiveness.  If your father can stay clean, and make a positive contribution to your life, I know your mother would want you to forgive him and try and gain something positive from all this pain.

Only you know what your heart is capable of, follow it and pray for the answers you need.


I hope you and your sister can heal, and overcome the disparity he has caused in your life, believe me, if he is willing to make it up to you by way of a relationship that is healthy, take it, love can heal anything, so if he has it to give to you, take it and run.


Praying for all of you.

February 1, 2007, 1:33 pm CST


Quote From: stepping1to12

It took a great deal of courage for Mark to appear and I applaud that.  He's still doing time and will never be a free man despite what you judgemental people think.

I would have to agree with you.  He will never be without chains.  His life will be lived with guilt, hurt and regret.  He can't change what he did but he can turn his life around by being the man he should of been from the start.  I wish them all the best.



February 1, 2007, 1:34 pm CST


        My sister and I were watching part one of this story, we both disagree on how Arica had handled this situation.  Mark knows what he has done and he has admitted that numerous times.  From what I have encountered in my life, it is hard to forgive and forget but time heals, twenty years apart allows Mark to accept what he did, to live with what he did, and Arica and her sister can't hold a grudge, beacuse it won't allow them to find happiness in their lives.  You can say Mark is the root if this problem; yes he did kill their mom but drugs has a big influence on your mind, body and soul. Everybody is looking down on him because when he got out of jail, he went down the same path, you have to understand that, it is all he knew, and he turned to that because he had nothing in his life to be positive about.  I give Mark a lot of credit for coming on this show because he is reaching out and this shows that he wants a relationship with his daughters.  To say that he doesn't care is bull because he would of never agreed to this show.   Arica had told him that all she wanted was for him to admit what he had done, and he did that more than once. But then when it came down to it, it wasn't enough and then she kept saying do this do that. You have to understand that this is a show, and one hour cannot compare to twenty years, if Arica really wants a relationship with her father, she really needs to give him a shot behind closed doors.  Mark has to live rest the rest of is his knowing that he killed his wife, isn't that enough punishment?

February 1, 2007, 1:37 pm CST

Dearest Airca

I saw the show and I cried with you. You are such a beautiful girl, not just on the outside but you have such a beautiful soul. Please don't let this change you. Although my situation was not quite as extreme as the one you have had to deal with, I have no contact with my parents because of serious abuse issues and how much it impacted my life. I so understand your desire to do such a brave thing like facing your father to try and understand things. I could never understand it when people would say I was brave for the things I did, but after watching you, my first thought was just how brave you are. It is completely understandable that you needed to do this, and that you might want some kind of relationship with him. He is your father afterall. It is difficult for those who have not suffered the result of a life with no mother or father to understand this. There is a bond there that just doesn't seem to go away sometimes.

Your father's actions of getting up and walking off stage and what followed were very hurtful. As hard as this is for him, he needs to let you have your say no matter what. This just seems to help those left behind feel like perhaps the person who has been the source of so much pain, might be able to understand and take responsibility for their actions. As much as your father seemed to want to try to do this in the beginning, his frustration and anger are all that will matter in the end to those so affected by his actions. For addicts, it seems, that having to be face to face with their actions is something that is almost impossible. Perhaps in the future your father will be more able to deal with himself and in turn be able to deal with the result of those actions and his children.

As hard as this as been for you, your courage, beauty, and abilities are a part of you that no one, no matter what the situation, can take away from you. Your son has a wonderful mother with so much to be proud of.

Please be good to yourself and take care.

February 1, 2007, 1:39 pm CST

I agree

I agree she needs closier but I don't think it is just about what her father did. I waited 21 years to meet my father and he was a disappointment. it comes down to knowing who you are, where you come from and it gives answers to the why you've wanted to know your whole life. I do agree that some of the closer needs to come from knowing why he did what he did but it will take more than a day to do that. and that hardest bump for her to overcome will be the fact that if he truly regreted killing his wife he wouldn'y have started back into the drugs as soon as he got out expecially seeing that he blames them for killing a woman he "loved" so much. (thats the part I don't get). all in all I think that the closier is for much more than what he did to their mother. hopefully both her sister and herself can find what they need.
February 1, 2007, 1:44 pm CST

The power of forgiveness

Quote From: Pleasance

I truly wish you would stop speaking for God.


There are a couple of message boards set aside to discuss religion and your beliefs. 



Were I her mother, I'd be rolling in my grave knowing my daughter was anywhere near this ex-con. 


Forgiving in this instance is just not applicable.


Moving forward can be accomplished WITHOUT forgiving your Mother's MURDERER.


He gave up his right to be a father when he made the choice to abuse and violate the entire family.         This was long before he made the choice to commit murder against the children's mother.








If Erica has the power in her to forgive someone who did something that huge to her, it may help her to stop hurting so bad.  She may not be ready to do this, it takes time, but in the end it IS worth it.


Part of it is not letting the person have that much power to hurt you and continue hurting you until you can let it go.  She can't change what happened in the past, but she can change what happens in her life now.  Forgiveness is applicable in ALL instinces, when or if she's ready to do so, but it's more for her benefit than anyone else's.

February 1, 2007, 1:45 pm CST

Dangerous assumption

I am watching the show right now, and I just do not understand why there is this prevailing assumption that he wouldn't have killed his wife if he hadn't been on drugs.  Drugs do not make you a murderer and getting off them does not remove the thing which made you a murderer.  Just from what he has said about his behavior that day, it sounds like typical stalking and abuse, which as you've all see, often ends in murder/suicide.  I have to say I think it is insane that Dr. Phil agreed to play any part in putting Erica back into the life of a murderer.  Getting him off drugs (which I doubt lasts anyway) is NOT going to stop him from being violent.  It is sad that Erica is so desperate for love that she is this hopeful about him providing anything but more pain.  I'm sorry, Erica, but time will prove I'm right.  Drugs isn't what made him do this.  Millions of people do drugs without ever acting out violently.  that has to be there first, probably from his own childhood pain, and the drugs are simply to escape from that. 
February 1, 2007, 1:50 pm CST

02/01 A Difficult Reunion – Part 1

      Erica, you are an amazing, brave and beautiful woman. I hope your tears can begin to cleanse you of the pain that has  been inflicted upon you and you family.  But do not waste one tear on the man who did this.  He is a coward and a pitiful excuse for a human being.  It looks like the only good thing he accomplished in this lifetime was to contribute some dna to create you and your sister. Perhaps that will be the last and only thing, only God knows. 

      I too was a poster child for dysfunctional birth parents but luckily murder was not involved.  But there was  extreme abuse, severe neglect, abandonment  etc.  My brother and sister and myself, the youngest were lucky to survive it.

       I did meet both my birth parents  when I was 37 years old, before they died and I know exactly what kept you crying and shaking during the interview.  After meeting my birth mother for the first time, it took a very long time to come to terms  with how I felt that day.  And when I finally gave into it was even more painful.  But then...with God's help, it got better.  

     No longer was the pain buried deep in my heart, it was out in the light of day where I could deal with it and see it for what it was. 

      You are NOT your mother and you are definitely NOT your father.  I chose never to talk to my birth mother after that one meeting. NO ONE understood that decision. I experience a lot of pressure to interact with her when she was dying of cancer.  I am a very loving, caring, forgiving person... but she did not deserve having a relationship with me and I did not see any reason to pretend that I felt anything but pity for her.  And I know for sure that it was for the best.

     I guess what I am saying is that you can move past this in time.  You do not have ever acknowledge him in any way again if you don't want to.  From what I saw today, the only thing he deserves is to go back to jail where he belongs.  I can not imagine how a vicious murder like him is out on the street.  You certainly have a responsibility to protect you children from him.

       Hang in there darlin girl.  You ARE WORTH IT! He made his choices twenty years ago. What ever choice you make now must be what is best for you and your family.

      Sincerely,  A Survivor in Indiana

February 1, 2007, 1:53 pm CST

Erica how real your fellings??

Quote From: flrat69

I can understand the frustration you feel with everyone telling you how you should feel and behave.  The problem is that, for better or worse, you did choose to have this on national television.  Your choice placed you in the public eye.  It may not seem fair, but you have to expect public reaction.  I am sure that, even with the varied comments, people do really wish you well.  I know I do.

Hi, I am a woman beeing  beaten  for 12 years every week, till I was bleeding everyhere!!

I lived in a country where was OK. to hit a woman, that time.

I had 2 small daughters one year a part, and many times I was in blood after beeing beaten, and run to the next house for a help, with them in my arm, but nobady vanted to get invald in family violace, not ewen a police, so I just washed up myself and suffer from a pain and abuse till the next time came agein.

What I am trying to tell you here is, I have a very hard time to belive  you  how much you   remembe  the day your mother was killed.

Only what you where told over the past 20 years, that is what I belive.

I ask my daughters  so many times and try to remind  them what was happeng in our life when they where 2-3-4- years old, and they had no memories from that time at all, only when they got much older.

Also your way of shaking your hand , the way you cry is not so..real to me,  and  you were to worrie about your well done make up also.

And talking about what you where going thrue in that age it is to hard for me to belive.

I fell sorry for you a lot ,but I been thrue, Hell in my life and today at 53 I am  a free woman reased them alone, by escaping from my country with then only the clouts on my back and a shoes on my feet, and started a new life, with them in a country I have , no family no freinds no support of anykinde!!

 On the today show, you father told you  he is sorry ,what he did he admited it was wrong , what more he can tell you?? What more you vant from him to do today??He can not take it back!

I do belive in my heart your fellings are not as real as you tring to show to us, just something about you does not  seems real to me, maybe you just vanted to be on the show!

Sorry for my hars words, but I have a problem with you to belive the hurt you showing, you Can Not remember as much as you telling us at 2 years old, that I know! 

And if you real why did not do this without Dr.Phil help??

Move on just like my daughters did ,life is not easy, at least you have a sister and your family  who  Loves you!!

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