Tuesday, January 3, 2006

OK couple sues Disney over their 'swap' with a Gay Seattle couple

An Oklahoma couple is suing ABC's parent company Walt Disney for $10 million claiming breach of contract, intentional infliction of mental distress, fraud and the violation of the husband's civil rights, according to The Oklahoman. The "crime," you ask? The producers of the show "Wife Swap" swapped the couple with a Gay Seattle couple.

While the husband spent a week with Howard Leonard, a counselor, at the couples Haileyville, Oklahoma, double-wide trailer, the wife was here in Seattle with Leonard's long-time partner Darry and their two daughters.

ABC Spokeswoman Mosel Miley said the show is "meant to challenge a family's norms and, moreover, the agreement between the plaintiff and RDF specifically stated that the swapped spouse could be either male or female."

The article continues:

[The wife] said her time in Seattle, other than the gay bar visit, was "a good time. We did lots of fun things."

Back in Haileyville, [the husband] was miserable. Badgering by producers caused so much stress, attorney [Mark] Edwards said, his client became "physically and mentally ill." Yet producers denied Bedford his right under the contract to contact his wife, he said. Bedford said that despite his beliefs, he didn't object to the not-quite-wife spending nights in the home with him and his three sons, then ages 12, 10 and 5.

Leonard didn't stay there, however, Bedford said, because "he threw a walleyed fit" and producers decided to put him up in a hotel for each night.

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