Jon and Kate Gosselin captivated the nation due to their huge family that led to a reality-television series called “Jon & Kate Plus 8.” Initially, they had a set of twins and later on sextuplets, which fascinated American viewers. The TV show premiered in 2007, but only lasted for five seasons as the couple’s relationship ended in divorce in 2009. The show was then rebranded as “Kate Plus 8”, and ran for a further two seasons, due to some legal issues of underage children working in the State of Pennsylvania where the Gosselin family resides. It was rebooted later on, and it lasted for four more seasons.
- 1 All about the Gosselin Family
- 2 The divorce and children’s custody battle timeline
- 3 “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” the reality TV show (2007 – 2009)
- 4 Rebranded as “Kate Plus 8” (2010 – 2017)
All about the Gosselin Family
Jon and Kate Gosselin were a regular American couple with a pair of twins living an ordinary life, and then Kate gave birth to sextuplets. The local media featured them on TV, and other networks followed suit.
— TLC Network (@TLC) July 25, 2017
The head of the Gosselin family, Jonathan Keith Gosselin, was born on 1 April 1977, in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. His father, Thomas Gosselin, of European descent, was a pediatric dentist, and his mother, Pamela Lyum Castello, a Korean-American, was born and raised in Hawaii. He along with his brothers Thomas and Mark were brought-up in a comfortable household. Jon worked as an IT specialist after he matriculated from Wyomissing High School in 1995.
The mother of eight children, Katie Irene Kreider, was born on 28 March 1975, the third child of Pastor Kenton Kreider and Charlene Kolak, of English, German and Scottish descent. She along with her siblings, Kendra, Kevin, Christen, and Clarissa were raised in a middle-class home, which inspired her to become a registered nurse after graduating from Reading Hospital and Medical Center in Reading, Pennsylvania. She would travel an hour each day to go to work as a delivery nurse in Wyomissing.
The Gosselin Twins
Before all the fuss about the Gosselin sextuplet kids, there were the twin girls Cara Nicole and Madelyn “Mady” Kate. They were born prematurely at 35 weeks gestation on 8 October 2000, and were both raised well, as fans noted that they were perfect older sisters to their younger siblings, even if they were often overwhelmed by the popularity of the sextuplets. When they were still young kids, Cara would often be praised by their parents for her quiet nature, and Mady would be frequently in trouble due to her loud personality. Until 2017, they were constantly in the public eye as part of the reality-TV shows, “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” and “Kate Plus 8.” After they matriculated from high school, they toured universities to have options. They wanted to experience a normal college life away from the media, so they attended separate schools in New York.
Just like their personalities, Cara initially didn’t share where she went, but it was revealed later that she was attending Fordham University while Mady posted photos and videos of herself in Syracuse University.
The last time they were interviewed in 2018, they were still not on speaking terms with their father. They wished people would stop from speculating about it, but if their father wanted to have some sort of a relationship with them, it would be best if he stopped talking about them in public. They also found it frustrating that he thought that they were being kept away from him by their mom.
The Gosselin Sextuplets
The moment Aaden Jonathan, Alexis Faith, Collin Thomas, Hannah Joy, Joel Kevin and Leah Hope were born on 10 May 2004, at the Penn State Hershey Medical Center, Hershey, Pennsylvania, everyone wanted a piece of them even if they were still on ventilators. They became instant celebrities because of the successful multiple births, especially as they were born 10 weeks premature.
Jon Gosselin Makes Allegations Against Ex Kate Gosselin in New…
It’s hard enough to raise a single child, so raising eight kids can be a nightmare – for some – but Kate said they created a schedule early on to avoid mishaps. Everything became a routine, and that took the guesswork out of it. She also said that to be able to fix everyone up was to make every single moment count, by looking at their faces and touching their hands to establish a connection, even while just changing a diaper.
Of the six kids, only Hannah and Collin were not with their mother, as they both wanted to live with their father. Collin stayed in a facility for children with special needs, but wrote his father that he wanted to live with him. The other four don’t talk to their father, and lived with their mother. Everything was going well for the sextuplets, and they were being raised lovingly by their parents albeit separately.
The tabloids went crazy with the news that Collin had an altercation with his father. He posted on social media that Jon physically abused him, which Hannah refuted and defended her father.
Police came to investigate, but no charges have been made and Collin continues to live with his father. Naturally, Kate became concerned that Collin claimed that he was repeatedly kicked by his father. However, later on it was revealed that Collin was acting out after he and his sister argued. Jon tried to keep it from escalating, but Collin became out of control, throwing things repeatedly at the car and swearing at him, that Jon needed to physically restrain him just so he would stay still.
While Jon doesn’t have a relationship with his other six children, Hannah was still in communication with her siblings and Jon said that was enough for him for now. Fans surmised that Kate probably had no relationship with Collin, since the boy only paid a heartfelt tribute to his father’s current girlfriend whom he looked up to as his mother figure, during the annual mother’s day celebration. Everything seemed to be quiet on both sides, and fans lamented that it would be great to see them all together united as a family.
However, since all the children have adapted well to their unique situation, and are apparently thriving, all’s well, at least for now.
The divorce and children’s custody battle timeline
Jon and Kate renewed their marriage vow in Maui, Hawaii in August 2008, to celebrate their 10th anniversary, with all their kids present at the ceremony. At that time, they were a picture of a happy couple as when they met for the first time back in October 1997 at a company event. Jon said everything was great, as they were a perfect match back then. When they had the TV show, “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” the paparazzi was all over them whenever they went out. Fans would swoon over photos of Jon carrying Kate’s purse, after having dinner. They were loved by many fans as they were inspired by the couple, until cracks in their relationship showed little by little.
There were allegations that Jon was having an affair in May. The affair was revealed by the brother of Jon’s rumored girlfriend, Deanna Hummel, and that the relationship had been going on for three months.
It was denied by both Jon and Deanna but the brother insisted it did happen, and he revealed it only to stop his sister from ruining her life. Later on, Jon issued an apology for making bad judgments, and claimed that his family was his top priority.
By June, a month after the rumor surfaced, Kate filed for divorce with a press statement that said, ‘Over the course of this weekend, Jon’s activities have left me no choice but to file legal procedures in order to protect myself and our children.’ She claimed in an interview with People Magazine that it was Jon who wanted the divorce, as he didn’t want to stay married to her any longer. She said that he told her to get a lawyer, and so she did.
In an interview with ABC News in September, Jon lashed back at Kate, and said that he took a lot of abuse from his estranged wife, that he was put down all the time. A month after that, Kate said that Jon left her without enough money to take care of the kids, saying that what he did wasn’t acceptable.
TLC network filed a lawsuit against Jon for not participating in the filming of “Jon & Kate Plus 8” in October; the network rebranded it to “Kate Plus 8.” In November, Jon filed a countersuit claiming that the TV show violated Pennsylvania’s child labor laws, and that he wanted his children out of the show. He had an interview with Larry King, and said that it wasn’t healthy for the kids to be in the show when their parents were going through a divorce. Eventually, the couple was granted a divorce on 18 December 2009.
In April 2010, court documents revealed that Jon asked for sole custody, and found the $20,000 monthly child support ridiculous. He accused Kate of being an absentee mother when she joined the TV series “Dancing with the Stars.” He also claimed that Kate was abusing her authority during visitation. However, he later dropped the lawsuit, but never gave any reason why.
Happy 42nd. birthday to Kate Gosselin of "Jon & Kate Plus 8" fame.Do you remember the show?
Fans were shocked again by the couple, as Kate accused Jon of hacking her email and computer, so that he could give tabloid writer, Robert Hoffman confidential information about her – the said writer released a book entitled, “Kate Gosselin: How She Fooled the World.” She filed a case against Jon in August 2013 and even said that he stole a hard drive from her house, but in November she dropped the charges.
The filing of cases between ex-husband and wife continued, as Jon said in an interview with InTouch Magazine that he planned to file an emergency petition for contempt and that he would fight for the custody of his kids. He said that he abhorred the parenting style of Kate, since he’d learned that she was quite strict with their kids. He claimed that the children needed to ask permission for every single action that they want to dake in the house. However, the article was later deleted, and again no reason was given.
Jon said in an interview with Steve Harvey in January that he hadn’t seen all his kids together for about three years. Whenever he visits them, he would only see some of them, but not all of them; there was an insinuation that their mother was keeping them from him. Later on, the Gosselin twins spoke up, and cleared that they were never kept from being with him by their mother.
After battling it out for the custody of Collin and Hannah with Kate for years, Jon won. In August, he announced that Hannah was living with him, and that he’d got Collin out of the facility center, claiming that his son had been wrongly institutionalized by Kate. His friends said that he wanted to fight for his other children, but couldn’t do anything yet. He chose to fight for Hannah and Collin because they were the ones who wanted to be with him.
“Jon & Kate Plus 8,” the reality TV show (2007 – 2009)
The Gosselin family was featured in two documentary specials about living with their twins and sextuplets, which were aired on Discovery Health Channel called “Surviving Sextuplets and Twins”, and “One Year Later.”
There was high interest in their children, based on the viewership ratings of the specials. “Jon & Kate Plus 8” was then offered to the couple and when it aired its TV premiere, it didn’t take long for the TV show to become one of the highest-rated reality series on the cable network. The TV series lasted for five seasons, with the fifth season premiere garnering 9.8 million viewers, which at that time was record-breaking for TLC. It was also the most-viewed show that night.
Due to its popularity, some people wanted to check if the kids weren’t exploited; there were no clear laws in Pennsylvania about children appearing in reality television shows, as apparently the law was vague when the workplace was the children’s home. Seven-year-olds and above were permitted to work in the entertainment industry as long as guidelines were followed, including no work after 11:30 in the evening, and not in any place serving alcohol. Jon and Kate said their children weren’t forced to work, as they all just played around the house while filming, and were never harmed.
For a time, they suspended airing since it was found that the children appeared with product placements, and that would mean the kids were considered as working. However, after TLC fixed the issues, the filming and airings continued.
The show was canceled when Jon and Kate divorced.
Rebranded as “Kate Plus 8” (2010 – 2017)
The TV producers rebranded the show and called it “Kate Plus 8”, featuring Kate as a newly divorced woman taking care of her eight children. It premiered on TV on 6 June 2010, and featured the sextuplet’s sixth birthday celebration in Orlando. The TV show lasted for only two seasons, as it was canceled in September 2011. Jon didn’t approve of it, and filed a case against Kate and the TV producers. The lawyers used the Pennsylvania child labor laws to prevent them from filming with the kids. Kate was highly criticized for continuing with the show, considering what happened to their family. Some people found it distasteful to expose the children under the circumstances.
Jon said that it would be best if the children weren’t exposed publicly at that time.
In June 2014, after a three-year TV hiatus, “Kate Plus 8” was back on TV for a reunion special, and Jon was livid that nobody informed him about it; he said he thought that his children should not be on TV. However, it seemed he couldn’t do anything about it, as the TV show was rebooted for its third season and was aired on 13 January 2015. This time it lasted for three more seasons, and finally aired its last episode on 23 July 2017 with the sextuplets celebrating their 13th birthday with an outdoor party. Kate said in the finale episode that she was looking forward to having eight teenagers under one roof. Many fans believed that one of the reasons it was canceled, aside from the decreasing number of viewers, was that Hannah wanted to live with his father, and Jon said that Hannah told him that she wasn’t comfortable living with her mother.
— TLC Network (@TLC) July 24, 2017
Jon and Kate Gosselin started with the dream of beating the high statistics of collapsed marriages with those couples with children of multiple births. Studies have been made, and those mothers with twins had a higher possibility of divorce as compared to those without. However, reality bites, and they ended with a nasty divorce. While they traded insults and accusations over the years, the last time it happened was back in 2020, through Collin’s case. After that incident, they stopped throwing shades during interviews. It was as though they became strangers to one another, and both claimed that they didn’t hear from one another – it was like the other person didn’t exist anymore. Even the official Instagram of “Kate Plus 8” hasn’t been updated since 14 July 2020.
In February 2021, Kate Gosselin sold their 7,500-square-foot mansion for $1.1 million and it was the end of an era; well, presuming that the proceeds were amicably divided, of which no news is apparent.