There’s no disputing the fact after last night’s “Teen Mom 3” episode: The Dejesus family doesn’t take s**t from anyone. We recently caught up with two of the unsung heroes of the show, Briana’s mom, Roxy, and her sister, Brittany, and chatted with them about their family’s unique bond. Check out the interview, which serves as definitive proof that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
Remote Control: What was being on “Teen Mom 3″ like for you guys?
Roxanne: It came at a time in our lives when we were devastated. If anything, it made us more aware and conscious of how we used to do things, how we should do things and how we should stick together. My whole thing going into it was if somebody can learn from my mistakes, that’s great. But it was an amazing experience.
Brittany: I feel like it’s a therapy session. You’re motivated to tell the truth and be honest with yourself and whoever’s going to watch it, and because you might help somebody, you don’t hold anything back. I think it’s helped a lot of people.
RC: Do you hope your family’s story will help other families in similar situations?
Brittany: I hope other siblings or parents realize that just because their teen daughter is having a baby doesn’t mean that you can turn your back on them, because no matter what, they’re still your kid. It might not be as hard as you think it is. Don’t get me wrong — it’s still hard and we have our problems, but don’t judge them on their mistakes. Just be there for them.
Roxanne: One, always know that you can get through this no matter how hard it is. Two, never sit there and be humiliated by a guy just because he’s the father. Never, ever. Three, don’t let a guy bully you. Four, stand up and keep moving, because life goes on and you gotta get through it. That’s it.
Roxanne gives Briana advice on dealing with Devoin:
RC: When you see other parents who shut their kids out after they found out they’re pregnant, what do you think?
Roxanne: Eww! That is all I can say. How dare a mom turn their back on their kid when their kid most needs them? I hate the saying, “Well if you made your bed you lie in it.” No! That’s not how life goes! People make mistakes. I still do as an adult. And I know that my kids are going to, and it’s my job to be there to guide them through it.
I think, mostly, you just have to love your kids, because no one is perfect. My God, why is it so hard for parents to love their kids?
Brittany: Maybe they’re just doing what their parents did to them. Some people just grow up like that.
Roxanne: I don’t care. It’s no excuse. You gotta be there for your kid. My kids could be 30 years old and making mistakes, and I’m never going to turn my back on them, ever.
RC: You guys have really shown what support looks like. How does it make you feel, knowing that you’re a model of what a familial support system can be?
Roxanne: I had no idea if people would enjoy or like us. All I know is what we’re doing comes naturally to us. It’s not something I just learned the other day. I’ve always taught my kids that they better have each other’s backs, or they’d have to deal with the wrath of me.
Brittany: I didn’t think anyone would like me at all. A lot of people at school didn’t like me because they thought I was mean and rude, but that’s just my face! I mean, I see it now. People reach out to me through Twitter and tell me they support me, and I’m just like “wow.” To think that that many people care, it really boggled my mind.
RC: Roxanne, you’re a busy single mother yourself. What drives you to be so supportive of your daughters and Nova?
Roxanne: I appreciate my two daughters for who they are. And I’m not bragging, but I think my kids are so genuine and so down to earth, and they’re such cool kids! How could I not want to be better or do better? They’re my kids!
Roxanne comes to Briana’s defense:
RC: Brittany, do you ever feel frustrated having to shoulder some of the responsibility with Nova — especially since you made the decision to not become a teen mother?
Brittany: In reality, I’m the oldest, so I’ve always taken care of Briana. When my mom went back to work, we didn’t have anybody around, so I had to do everything. I don’t think I helped raise Briana, but my mom says I did. So it wasn’t hard for me to help Briana raise her kid. I mean, parents get frustrated all the time; I get frustrated too, but that’s just how it is.
Roxanne: Can I say something on behalf of that? Sorry, I think that what Brittany gets frustrated with is that she’s sacrificing and doing so much, and Devoin is doing absolutely nothing.
Brittany: I’d rather be the one getting frustrated but still taking care of my sister and Nova, than — not that she’d ever do this — Briana giving Nova over to Devoin and not knowing what the hell was going on or how she’s being taken care of.
RC: Do you ever feel like you’re missing out on anything knowing that you chose a different life for yourself?
Brittany: I still have regrets and I wonder, but I want to have a kid with a man that loves me and that’s gonna be there. And not a boy, a man. So I made my decision when I was 18-years-old, and I didn’t want to struggle — especially if we both had kids. All three of us would have been even more stressed out.
I’m just glad I have Nova. I love Nova like she’s my kid, but she’s not. My time will come, and I know that when it comes, it’ll be great.
RC: Has watching your sister deal with Devoin also made you rethink potential boyfriends?
Brittany: Yes! Even now, I’ve had days where I’m super sad and I’ll talk to my sister about it, but then I look at the way Devoin treats my sister and the things he does to her. And honestly, Devoin is like an angel compared to my ex-boyfriend. So when I look at that I’m like, if Briana’s hurting now — if that was me? — I’d probably be in trouble with the law because I don’t take crap from ANYONE anymore. And if a baby was involved? I would have kicked somebody’s ass, no lie.
RC: Roxanne, how have you managed to deal with such different situations with each of your daughters so well?
Roxanne: I don’t know how I did it. I did it out of love. I love and respect my kids. The three of us made this choice. We were devastated and crushed, but we decided to pull through. We still deal with the consequences of both their choices, but again, I can’t stress it enough, you just have to be there for your kids.
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