speaking out

Collin Gosselin Of 'Jon & Kate Plus 8' Broke Down In Tears During An Emotional Interview

The now 18-year-old opened up about how growing up on camera affected his whole life.

Collin Gosselin, best known for being a toddler on TLC's 'Jon & Kate Plus 8' opened up to Entertainm...
YouTube / Entertainment Tonight

Reality television has became a staple of entertainment during our lifetime. There is pretty much a TV show for any kind of interest or person you could imagine. However, in the early ‘00s, TLC came out with a reality TV show that became a global sensation that put the whole “family” reality TV genre on the map.

Following the life of parents, Jon and Kate Gosselin, as well as their eight children, the show Jon & Kate Plus 8 totally changed the landscape of reality TV, especially since the show really focused on the kids themselves.

With a spotlight on these little ones at such a young age, it’s not shocking that turmoil followed for the family of ten. Now, after years of silence, one of the kids, Collin Gosselin, 18, is speaking out about how being one of the sextuplets on the show affected his life.

Gosselin didn’t hold back when speaking with Entertainment Tonight, where he opened up about his siblings, his estrangement from his mom, and how living with his dad is going.

And though the feelings he has his for parents and siblings may be complicated, there is one this Gosselin is sure of: reality TV tore his family apart.

“I want to believe it was because of TV and what being in the public eye does to a family. I think it tore us apart,” he told ET. “It gave us less time to actually be together as a family [and] more time to be in the public eye.”

Things within the Gosselin family started to become rocky not long after the series began and in 2009, Jon and Kate decided to divorce. The former couple announced the split during the premiere of the show’s fifth season, which at the time was still TLC's most popular series.

Both parents continued with the show for a bit, filming their segments separately, until Jon ultimately left the show. Kate then carried on with a new show simply called Kate Plus 8 which ran from 2010 to 2017.

However, before Kate Plus 8 premiered, Kate sent Collin to an institution. He was 12 at the time.

“Collin has special needs,” Kate said at the time, adding that Collin received “a fairly fluid diagnosis of what those needs are, but he needs to learn certain strategies to help him deal with things.”

Collin, who has lived with his father since he left the institution, told ET he believed he shouldn’t have been there in the first place. When ET read aloud quotes from Kate during the interview, Gosselin said it was “unfortunate that that’s how my mom phrased me as a person.”

“I hope that if we met again one day she would understand that that’s not the case,” he said.

Though he believes that the institution was the breaking point for his relationship with his mom, he explained that their relationship was crumbling before.

“After being there, I didn’t have a relationship with her,” Collin said of Kate. “Even before [being] there, I don’t think we had much of a relationship and I think that just kept tearing it even more down.”

Donna Svennevik/Disney General Entertainment Content/Getty Images

Despite their complicated past, Collin told ET that he still desires a relationship with his mom.

“I think every son wants to have a relationship with their mom,” he told the outlet. “But I’m doing very well.”

He also revealed that he has not spoken to most of his siblings in “five or six years.”

Holding back tears, Gosselin explained just how “tough” it has been to be estranged from six of his seven siblings, which include his sextuplet siblings, Aaden, Joel, Alexis and Leah, as well as 22-year-old twins, Madelyn and Cara.

“I want to respect their space and their time and respect how they feel about everything, so I’m kind of just waiting for the day that they reach out,” he explained. “I don’t want to reach out.

“I don’t want to invade their space,” the former reality star continued. “I’d rather just let them do it on their own terms.”

Struggling to gain composure, Gosselin summed up that he loves his siblings greatly and despite the distance, he still desires a relationship with them in the future.

“I love them to death,” he told the outlet. “I love them very much. … I really hope that one day when I have kids that my kids will know their aunt and uncles.”