You are here

From Real Housewives of New Jersey: More Sue-Happy Parents



If you've been following The Real Housewives of New Jersey, you know the least exciting story line follows the career of Albie -- housewife Caroline Manzo's son -- getting into and then flunking out of law school. Apparently Albie's learning disability was too debilitating, and he was unable to pass his classes. The school asks him to leave, taking away Albie's student status, which apparently bars him from applying to other law schools for two years.

Caroline is pissed. "Don't you let anybody tell you you can't do anything. To lay down and die is unacceptable," she says, crying. "Use this to fuel your fire." The family then proceeds to hire a lawyer to sue the school, claiming they didn't give him enough of a chance. (This on the heels of Canadian parents suing over their sons not making the hockey team.) Albie discovers that he may be able to avoid a lawsuit if he can write a letter to administrators asking it to allow him to apply to a different school.

It's hard to know what's happening off camera, but I was surprised to hear Albie was failing. Caroline, who is always talking about how mature and talented he is, sure seemed surprised and out of touch, too. But you know who couldn't have been surprised? Albie. Particularly if you know you have a learning disability, you must take the extra steps to be sure you're getting the help you need, and ask for help when you need it – not after you've already flunked out.

We're all for encouraging kids to chase their dreams no matter what, but what is Caroline truly teaching her son? When the going gets tough, the tough…sue? It appears, learning disability or not, Albie made his own bed, and isn't it another important life lesson that you have to accept the consequences of your actions?

What do you think: should parents sue over things like this? Does the fact that he has a learning disability make you more sympathetic?