Gypsy Rose Blanchard Regrets Getting Married in Prison: ‘I Learned the Hard Way’

Rolling back the tapes of her Lifetime docuseries chronicling the last few months of her incarceration, Gypsy Rose Blanchard says she wishes she could’ve told herself not to get married in prison.

“If I could tell myself not to get married in prison, I probably would have told myself, ‘Don’t do it, girl, don’t do it,'” Blanchard told TheWrap, referencing her wedding to now-husband Ryan Anderson, from whom she has since separated.

As “The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose Blanchard” followed Blanchard and Anderson’s nuptials, the docuseries also featured her family members expressing concern for her decision. Blanchard has watched the show back and thoroughly understands where they were coming from, admitting, “I’m definitely saying, ‘You guys were right.'”

“I should have listened, I should have took the advice,” Blanchard added. “I learned the hard way.”

Watching back the two Lifetime docuseries — including “Gypsy Rose: Life After Lock Up,” which debuted Monday — has also enabled Blanchard to “feel more compassion” for herself as she views her traumatic road to freedom from an outside perspective, saying, “I feel sympathy for me and I went through it, so it’s kind of like an out-of-body experience for me.”

“It really hurt my heart to watch me say that I was undeserving of love,” she recalled. “That’s where I started to cry out a little bit. I wish I could tell myself, ‘You are deserving of love. You don’t have to be a perfect victim, you don’t have to be someone that made all the right choices, but you are deserving of love.'”

Blanchard, who was a victim of Munchausen syndrome by proxy, spent eight and a half years in prison for conspiring with her then-boyfriend, Nicholas Godejohn, to kill her mother. While Blanchard’s story was popularized through Hulu series, “The Act” and chronicled in 2017 documentary “Mommy Dead and Dearest,” participating in “Prison Confessions” and “Life After Lock Up” felt like the “right place” for Blanchard to share an update on her journey.

“This is the first time we could follow me over a significant amount of time, and so in that time, a lot of exciting things were happening for me — I was about ready to see the parole board,” Blanchard said. “I really wanted to expand on some of these things that I had learned. It had been a couple of years since other documentaries were done and, over time, you learn things about your past.”

With years of reflection from her family members, doctors and others involved with her case, Blanchard noted hearing her primary care physician, Dr. Steele, apologize on camera “hit [her] hard.”

“There’s that part of me that wants to feel like I understand where they were coming from, and then there’s that other part of me that gets reminded that this whole thing could have been different had other steps been taken a little further,” Blanchard said. “There’s that pull between forgiveness and still going through those really rough emotions.”

As soon as she stepped out of prison amid her release at the end of December 2023, Blanchard was immediately thrown into the spotlight as paparazzi followed her and Anderson in their first outings. The Internet was also lit aflame by her first Instagram posts, which she looks back on as a “learning experience,” to say the least.

“I wouldn’t trade sharing my life in the documentaries for the world, but I feel like the pressure to be seen as a certain label almost broke me,” Blanchard said. “I did have to take a step back from social media, and I very often check in with myself and make sure that I’m OK mentally and emotionally before stepping into another camera or lens so people can do it all over again.”

Blanchard was especially embraced on TikTok, which she navigated for the first time following its creation during her time in prison.

“The supporters that have supported me, I appreciate them — I feel welcomed in that space, but it [can] also be a space of hate and negativity” Blanchard said, adding that staying focused on the positive is a “daily challenge.”

For Blanchard, participating in “Life After Lock Up” was a way for her take to hold of the narrative surrounding herself and “break the mold” of what the public knew about her.

“I was sitting in my prison cell in December about ready to get out and it just hit me that I have all these labels put on me and I’m like, ‘I’m so tired of being the prison version of myself,'” Blanchard shared. “All my recent pictures have been me in khaki … in a prison setting. I’m tired of this. I want to come out and show people that I’m more than this. I am myself. I don’t put labels on myself.”

Navigating the parameters of parole in such a high-profile case, Blanchard hopes the series raises awareness for the difficult transition from imprisonment to being paroled, saying, “It breaks down stereotypes … confusion, misunderstanding, ignorance.”

As for what’s next for her following a whirlwind of media attention, Blanchard foresees family time and self care in her future.

“My life has been on hyperspeed, so [I’d love] to have some downtime — just have those lazy days with the family and take that priority time for me to just take a bubble bath,” she said.

“Gypsy Rose: Life After Lock Up” premieres Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on Lifetime, with new episodes streaming the day after their release on or the Lifetime app. “The Prison Confessions of Gypsy Rose Blanchard” is available on Lifetime’s app, Prime Video, Apple TV, and all the other MVPDs.

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