A tug of war should never involve a child. When I heard on the news about Alec Baldwin's tirade against his daughter over the phone, it just made my heart hurt. I've been there. I wouldn't do it. It cost me several years of being without my precious daughter. Shame on Alec Baldwin for subjecting his daughter to his frustration and shame on Kim Basinger for making the message public and getting a bodyguard for her daughter to further inflame the situation. Here is the rant he left on his daughter's answering machine:
Hey, I want to tell you something, OK? And I want to leave a message for you right now. 'Cause again, it's 10:30 here in New York on a Wednesday, and once again I've made an ass of myself trying to get to a phone to call you at a specific time. When the time comes for me to make the phone call, I stop whatever I'm doing and I go and I make that phone call. At 11 o'clock in the morning in New York and if you don't pick up the phone at 10 o'clock at night. And you don't even have the G**damn phone turned on. I want you to know something, OK?
I'm tired of playing this game with you. I'm leaving this message with you to tell you you have insulted me for the last time. You have insulted me. You don't have the brains or the decency as a human being. I don't give a damn that you're 12 years old, or 11 years old, or that you're a child, or that your mother is a thoughtless pain in the ass who doesn't care about what you do as far as I'm concerned. You have humiliated me for the last time with this phone.
And when I come out there next week, I'm going to fly out there for the day just to straighten you out on this issue. I'm going to let you know just how disappointed in you I am and how angry I am with you that you've done this to me again. You've made me feel like s**t and you've made me feel like a fool over and over and over again. And this crap you pull on me with this G**damn phone situation that you would never dream of doing to your mother and you do it to me constantly and over and over again. I am going to get on a plane and I am going to come out there for the day and I am going to straighten your ass out when I see you. Do you understand me? I'm going to really make sure you get it. Then I'm going to get on a plane and I'm going to turn around and come home. So you'd better be ready Friday the 20th to meet with me. So I'm going to let you know just how I feel about what a rude little pig you really are. You are a rude, thoughtless little pig, OK?
I don't usually talk about this because although it was many years ago, it still can bring pain and tears. When my daughter was small, her dad and I divorced. The divorce was quite amicable and we shared joint custody of our daughter. This ended when our daughter was ready to enter first grade. I felt she should go to school where I lived; he felt she should go to school where he lived. After a year of court battles, my daughter was showing signs of severe stress, and I said that I would settle for joint custody with her father having physical custody if he would get her into counseling right away.