"A Boy's Life" America Undercover doc. on HBO - did anyone see it? - Mothering Forums
Television > "A Boy's Life" America Undercover doc. on HBO - did anyone see it?
Teensy's Avatar Teensy 01:01 PM 03-25-2004
I watched it last night and found it very disturbing. Did anyone else see it?

America Undercover has consistantly good documentaries - this isn't the first one I haven't been able to stop thinking about.

The scene with the gun gave me the heebie jeebies big time.

Teensy's Avatar Teensy 02:51 PM 03-25-2004
Okay, so maybe no one else saw it last night. It was a really interesting documentary about a seven year old boy who lives with his dysfunctional grandmother.

Here's a link to the HBO description:

It will be showing again, the schedule is on the site.
Avonlea's Avatar Avonlea 03:21 PM 03-25-2004
Oh yes, I saw it. Incredibly disturbing, wasn't it?

I actualy recorded most of it to watch a another time because it was almost too much to take in at once.

I do think Robert did cause those bruises, but based on her past behavior I would say it was some form of self defense .

I wish I copould give Rabanna some teeth and send a nutritionest to her home for a year..one who could follow her through the store and help her make really great healthy food choises for her family and maybe help them avoid problems later on in life.

I am sort of sad to say that I have family back east who are very similar to these people.

I am scared of them. I avoid them..the poverty and lack of education and the unbelievable number of fights and then babies and no money and etc....

I am glad I am as far away from them as I am , now that I have children of my own.
ericaz's Avatar ericaz 05:07 PM 03-25-2004
i missed the beginning and the end but caught most of the middle.

it was horrifying. it almost seemed like a put-on. those poor kids! so what ended up happening? dh told me they took them away from the grandmother but gave them to the mother - who didn't appear to have much in the way of parental knowledge if you ask me.
LunaMom's Avatar LunaMom 08:43 PM 03-25-2004
If you have HBO2, it's on again tonight, I forget what time. I missed it last night.
Avonlea's Avatar Avonlea 03:53 AM 03-26-2004
I doubt it was any sort of put on, sadly.

Like I said..I have family like these people back east. It is always so sad/shocking to me the way they live and how they raise thier poor babies.

It takes many generatiuons of poverty and lack of any realk education to get there,..add on mental illness and abuse of all sorts and ..well..it gets so ugly.
LunaMom's Avatar LunaMom 03:04 PM 03-26-2004
Well, I watched it last night, and I just fell in love with Robert. What a brave, bright, resilient kid.

Taking him away from his grandmother was a good thing. Even though Robanna seemed to be lacking somewhat in her parenting skills, it seemed to be more a result of low self-esteem than anything else. Once she got the kids back, it seemed she was doing the best she could. The scenes of her playing with the kids towards the end were so sweet - she really seemed to enjoy having them with her. You could see the love that was there.

The school principal was such a caring woman. I felt her frustration when she was speaking with Robert's grandmother. I do agree that she was causing most of his symptoms and that the whole thing was a self-fulfilling prophecy. She would make him mad, physically restrain him and say, "Let it all out," as though the anger wasn't caused by her! The psychologist's assertion that it was similar to Munchausen's syndrome by proxy seemed pretty accurate to me.

I would love to see an update at some point. I know I'm going to be thinking about Robert for quite a while after seeing this program.