The Story of Gypsy Rose Blanchard
After over eight years of being behind bars, Gypsy Rose Blanchard is able to tell her own truth. Early this month, LifeTime released a six-episode documentary series, “The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose,” just weeks after Gypsy Rose was released on parole.
In 2015, Blanchard was sentenced to a ten-year sentence for conspiring to murder her mother. Her boyfriend at the time had stabbed her mother, Dee Dee Blanchard, seventeen times. She pleaded guilty.
The Hulu series “The Act” released in 2019, was a dramatization of Gypsy’s story. Unlike “The Act,” the LifeTime series, “The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose,” allows Gypsy to tell her own story. Gypsy told Access Hollywood, “I have not watched ‘The Act.’ I lived it. It was my life. I don’t feel like I have to go back and watch it play out. I’m sure Joey King did an amazing job playing me. I actually heard an audio clip of her doing my voice and I think she got it spot on, but honestly, not reliving the trauma is the best option for me.”
Gypsy met her ex-boyfriend, Nicholas Godejohn, on a dating site. Gypsy was at the age where she wanted a boyfriend and her mother didn’t allow it. Their relationship lasted almost three years. Gypsy expressed, “he had different personalities that were violent and scary. He thought he was a 500-year-old vampire named Victor. I thought I was in love with the good side of him.”
At a movie theater in 2015, Gypsy met Nick for the first time. As she tells Dr.Phil in an interview, that was the time when she asked Nick to kill her mother and they called it Plan B. “The Act” shows a good representation of Gypsy’s life and the time they first met. Gypsy said, “She got increasingly angry because I was paying more attention to him than I was to my mom.” Which caused Dee Dee to constantly move Gypsy away so they were no longer near him.
Rod Blanchard met Dee Dee when he was 17 and Dee Dee told him she was 21; she was actually 23. They were only dating for three months when she found out she was pregnant, and shortly after they got married. On Rod’s 18th birthday, he realized he wasn’t in love with Dee Dee. Gypsy was blamed by Dee Dee for the divorce and would tell Gypsy she wasn’t the son that he wanted.
Gypsy suffered abuse from her mother, who suffered from a psychological disorder called Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy. Professor Beatrice Yorker, who has done extensive research on Munchausen Syndrome, explained in an interview on NBC Nightly News that “Gypsy Blanchard is the only documented case of a victim of Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy who has killed their perpetrator to get out.“
Dee Dee Blanchard claimed Gypsy had seizure disorders, hearing impairment, she was forced to be in a wheelchair and was told she couldn’t walk. When Gypsy started getting older, Dee Dee would shave her hair off and tell everyone that she had leukemia. She underwent many surgeries and Gypsy expresses in the, “The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose” that “There was no end in sight.”
Gypsy was disconnected from her family members, and all she knew were her mom, hospital visits, and her doctors. Dee Dee would often lie about Gypsy’s age.
Blanchard said, “My mother taught me how to lie and manipulate, but that doesn’t make me who I am and I can learn to tell the truth“
Gypsy recalls, “When I first got arrested, I will admit that I had a lack of remorse. It wasn’t until years that I began to miss my mother and begin to understand that she’s not coming back.”
In the documentary series, Dr. Rob Steele, who was Gypsy’s pediatrician in 2005, said Dee Dee never had or could show him any of Gypsy’s previous medical records. Steele states, “If I had seen any of this earlier on, I just think a lot of things would’ve been different.”
Dee Dee pulled Gypsy out of school because she was afraid she wouldn’t get her medication. Gypsy didn’t have many friends and without being in school, it was hard to make any. In “The Act,” Gypsy has a neighbor whose name is Lacey, but she is based on Aleah Woodmansee. They were close friends, and she often knew Gypsy met men online, and she knew about her relationship with Nick Godejohn. Woodmansee doesn’t like how she’s portrayed in “The Act.”, and mentions how many of the scenes are complete fiction.
In a Munchausen abuse situation, when they are with their mothers, the victim looks really sick and plays the part, but as soon as the mother leaves, the child is perfectly normal. In one segment of the documentary, viewers see that Gypsy was fully aware she could walk, but she craved her affection and was afraid of losing it. Gypsy’s uncle recalls when Gypsy was a child and she wanted to jump on the trampoline with the rest of the kids. When Dee Dee saw her on the trampoline, Dee Dee pulled Gypsy off the trampoline, screaming, “Don’t you know she’s crippled.” The uncle says he and the other kids had seen differently.
The most significant insight that comes out in “The Prison Confessions” is how Gypsy sees her situation. Gypsy says, “The best memory that I have in my entire life is the day that I got to prison, and I got to go out to the picnic tables, and I’m like, I’m free. I’m free to have friends. I’m free to want what I want. It might be in a controlled environment, but this is nice.”
“The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose” is now available on Hulu and on most streaming platforms.