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This week the whole Judd family has gone on a full-court press in the media: Ashley has been promoting her new memoir, All That Is Bitter & Sweet, and Naomi and Wynonna are hyping their new documentary series for OWN, The Judds (premiering Sunday, April 10, at 9 p.m. ET on OWN). Whenever anyone in this talented, complex and very dysfunctional family talks to the media, some new revelation tends to come out, and this time is no different.
On Thursday, Naomi offered her response to Ashley's disclosures while appearing on The View. When Barbara Walters asked the singer if she feels like she neglected Ashley, Naomi replied: "In a way I do." Judd went on to call her daughters -- and her husband, Larry Strickland -- the "joys of her life" and said, "I support Ashley." Wynnona, who was also on the show, chimed in to say that she hasn't read her sister's book, adding that: "We all have three different realities of the same car ride to the nightmares we were in, and it's (Ashley's) turn to tell her side of the story." Watch for yourself below:
During a different appearance, this one on Good Morning America, Naomi pointed out that she never received love or validation from her own mother. And she made it clear that she bears no ill will whatsoever toward Ashley. "These two girls are my life," she said. "I love them so dearly, and I want the book to be a success."
Judging by this preview of The Judds, neither of Naomi's daughters will be nominating her for any parenting awards -- unless, of course, it's for "worst mother." Even in the first five minutes of the pilot episode, it is abundantly clear that the Judds' professional success was a blessing and a curse for Wynonna. For years, she and her mother were a hugely successful country music duo, achieving incredible fame and fortune. But for much of that time, Wynonna thought of her mother as a slave-driving task master. She recalls that Naomi's "manipulation was so bad at times that I literally used to refuse to speak to her for months at a time."
"Lord knows before I was a ferocious mountain lion kind of a mom," Naomi says. "I feel bad about how hard I was on Wynonna. I feel terrible. I was horrible. I didn't know any better... I was terrified of losing her."
There's a common thread among all the interviews in this week's Judd family media blitzkrieg. They all use the language of recovery and psychoanalysis. Using phrases like "validating my reality," and giving someone "her time to speak," these women have clearly spent many hours on therapists' couches. And, in a way, aren't all these talk show couches just an extension of that?