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The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

The Student News Site of University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma

The Trend

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Gypsy-Rose Blanchard was Released after Eight Years

Blanchard is hitting headlines once again, this time for being released on parole
Roommates%2C+Kaelynn+Torres+%28left%29+and+Emily+Loughridge%2C+decided+to+watch+The+Act+on+Hulu+shortly+after+Gypsy-Rose+Blanchard+was+released+from+prison.+
Elyanne Kenney
Roommates, Kaelynn Torres (left) and Emily Loughridge, decided to watch “The Act” on Hulu shortly after Gypsy-Rose Blanchard was released from prison.

How would you feel if you learned that your whole life was a lie? That is exactly what happened to Gypsy-Rose Blanchard when she learned that her mother was lying to her and everyone around them her whole life. When she learned this truth, she took matters into her own hands and did something about it.

In the recent news, Blanchard was paroled and released from a ten-year prison sentence after serving eight years in prison. Her release has made people remember her story and learn what she went through to land her in prison.

“Don’t judge me because you haven’t walked a mile in my shoes,” Blanchard said in a 20/20 interview days after her release from prison.

On July 27, 1991, a little girl by the name of Gypsy-Rose Alcida Blanchard was born. She was born to her mother, 24-year-old Clauddine “Dee Dee” Blanchard, and her father, 17-year-old Rod Blanchard. Blanchard’s mother suffered from a severe case of Munchausen syndrome by proxy, a syndrome that enabled her to create factitious diseases for her daughter.

Dee Dee claimed that Blanchard suffered from muscular dystrophy and claimed that her daughter needed a walker to get around. When Blanchard was a bit older, she was in a minor car accident and only had a minor knee injury. After the accident, Dee Dee claimed that her daughter needed a wheelchair. Dee Dee also claimed that her daughter had leukemia and other disorders.

The Blanchard’s originally resided in Louisiana. However, their house was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. They ended up moving to Missouri and rented a house in Aurora. When the media got the attention that a mother and her disabled child had their home destroyed by the hurricane, the community came together to provide them with a home with a custom wheelchair ramp on the front of the house.

Along with creating false diseases for her daughter, Dee Dee also physically abused Blanchard in order to control her. Fast forward a few years, her mother forged a copy of her birth certificate so that she could change her birthdate, changing it to 1995 instead of 1991.

In about 2012, Blanchard learned to use the computer when her mother had gone to bed for the night. She met a man on an online Christian dating site, named Nicholas Godejohn. He had a mental illness, which was sometimes reported as Dissociative Identity Disorder, and he had Autism Spectrum Disorder. Eventually, the two met in person, and by that time, Blanchard had figured out that she was not as sick as her mother claimed she was. The pair developed a plan to murder Dee Dee so that Blanchard could escape her, and then the couple could be happy together.

In 2015, Blanchard let Godejohn into their house while Dee Dee was sleeping, and he murdered Dee Dee. Afterward, the two fled but were caught shortly after. Blanchard was sentenced to ten years in prison with the possibility of parole, and Godejohn was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

In 2019, while she was still in prison, Hulu created a show depicting Blanchard’s life titled The Act, starring Joey King as Blanchard. Blanchard was released from prison on parole on Sunday, Dec. 28, 2023. While in prison, she married her now husband, Ryan Anderson and the two are living together since Blanchard’s release. Blanchard has spent a lot of time in the media being interviewed, as many people are interested in her story.

She released her first book, Released; Conversations on the Eve of Freedom, in which she talks about her life and her life since her mother was murdered, which was released in January 2024. Blanchard has been active on social media, accruing 8.2 million followers on Instagram and another 9.8 million in TikTok.

 

Elyanne Kenney is a second-year psychology major at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma.

Ray Thomas-Lapham
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About the Contributor
Elyanne Kenney, Contributing Writer
Elyanne is a second-year psychology major from Moore. She has a dog named Luna, and she really enjoys Taylor Swift and reading books. Elyanne can normally be found sitting in her apartment listening to music and hanging out with Luna.   Experience with The Trend: Contributing Writer: Aug. 2023 - present