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Video: Kate Gosselin on life as a single mom

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    >>> america's best known moms, kate gosselin . we have seen the good, the bad and the ugly from watching her children grow up to the unraveling of her marriage. now a single mother , kate is introducing the kids to brand new adventures on their tlc reality show " kate plus 8 ." the latest adventure, a trip to australia. welcome back.

    >> good morning. thank you.

    >> you took eight kids under 10 on a 21-hour flight to australia?

    >> i did.

    >> how'd that go?

    >> it was one of the best flights of our lives.

    >> are you kidding me?

    >> i'm not. i'm shocked to say it. i dreaded it. i remember we had about five hours left to go and alexis said, how much longer do we have on this airplane, mommy? i was trying to give her an honest answer but i said, oh, maybe fourish hours. she said, oh, good, i love this airplane.

    >> i have seen kids unravel, kids who will not be named, on a two-hour flight. i can't imagine. how are the kids enjoying the filming? is it something they are dealing with, coping with well? is it positive in their lives?

    >> it is a positive fixture in our lives. it's normal, exciting. they still cheer when the crew comes in the door. i would not say it if it weren't true. we just filmed this weekend for an upcoming episode. they said that was one of their best weekends ever.

    >> i was going back over transcripts and last time you were here you spoke to meredith. two of the kids colin and alexis had problems in school. there were reports they were kicked out. you took them out because of behavior issues. they're still at home. why?

    >> they are starting to integrate back in within the very imminent future. there was actual medical issues that we dealt with. they're doing wonderfully at home, reading at the top level of kindergarten and writing. they're doing amazingly well. i know looking back now i made the right decision, did the right thing.

    >> you even said at the time clearly there is some fallout from a divorce here. there is the emotional strain of that. in terms of those two children and the others, are any of them exhibiting some negative behaviors that you think can be attributed to the divorce you went through?

    >> every child whose parents are divorced will go through some negative behaviors. colin and alexis 's therapists said a third of the kids will sail through perfectly, a third do horribly and a third get through it with counseling. she said you don't know which kids will do what but the important thing is to have a positive attitude , to pick up where our family left off and continue on with the traditions which is what i'm doing. we're really good now.

    >> are you and jon good now? this was a tough, public divorce. i know there were times you two didn't want to be in the same room as one another. how is that now?

    >> i think it's still the same. i am doing what i can to reach out and communicate. what i receive back is, you know, not in my control. i'm doing the best that i can to vol him in our family.

    >> is he involved with the children?

    >> he has them two weekends a month. i wish that he would see them more to be honest. so do they. but the important thing is that i control my reaction, my behavior, my attitude and my words.

    >> you said to our producer in the preinterview in terms of your own dating life, and you roll your eyes, but --

    >> do we always have to talk about this?

    >> you said you don't have much hope there. you have been on about half a date since you were divorced. first of all, what's half a date?

    >> i don't know.

    >> why do you think it's so tough?

    >> well, you start out the first time around and you're a single girl with not a lot of issues or baggage. i like to have fun and i don't have a lot of time for myself. i do have eight kids. i feel like i have my life together pretty much. but let's be honest. it's going to take a strong person to wrangle this mess.

    >> that's right. you are someone that would be dating a single mother of eight children. that's a big undertaking.

    >> yeah.

    >> do you think that intimidates or over well. s guys?

    >> probably. if he can pass the test he's got to be super-man.

    >> you're tweeting. you have entered the twitter generation.

    >> yeah. i'm not as old as i seem.

    >> i am. kate , nice to see you.

    >> thank you.

    >> " kate plus 8 " premieres tonight

TODAY contributor
updated 4/4/2011 10:53:15 AM ET 2011-04-04T14:53:15

Being one of reality TV’s most famous single ladies doesn’t necessarily draw in men in droves, especially when you have eight kids underfoot — that’s the cold, hard reality single mom Kate Gosselin revealed on TODAY Monday.

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“I feel like I have my life together pretty much, but let’s be honest; it’s going to take a strong person to wrangle this mess,” 36-year-old Gosselin told Matt Lauer live on TODAY. “If [a suitor] can pass the test, he’s got to be Superman.”

Gosselin first came to fame with husband Jon and their twins and sextuplets on the TLC reality series “Jon & Kate Plus 8” in 2005. But as they became a ratings juggernaut, the family imploded: Jon and Kate separated near their 10th wedding anniversary in June 2009.

Now, Kate shoulders the bulk of parental duties and also soldiers on solo with the show. In between, she has made a cottage industry of her fame — writing two books, competing on “Dancing With the Stars” and guest-hosting on “The View.”

The damage of divorce
But she told Lauer that none of that is why she's only been on “half a date” since her split with Jon — it’s tending to her two 10-year-olds and six 5-year-olds that’s to blame. And she fears her love life might be hopeless.

Slideshow: Jon and Kate Gosselin (on this page)

“You start out the first time around, and you’re some single with not a lot of baggage or issues,” she said. In contrast, Kate now has issues to spare — including a sometimes stormy relationship with ex Jon and emotional issues centering around two of the sextuplets, Colin and Alexis. Kate pulled them out of their private kindergarten last December — refuting media reports they were expelled for aggressive behavior — and now home-schools them. They also receive therapy that Kate says was needed after the divorce.

“Every child whose parents are divorced will go through some negative behaviors,” Gosselin said, adding there were also “medical issues we dealt with” for Colin and Alexis. But she quickly added that the children have thrived in home-schooling, and she plans to integrate them back into regular school “in the imminent future.”

Related: Kate Gosselin says kids weren’t expelled

“They’re doing amazingly well,” she told Lauer. “I know, looking back, I made the right decision, I did the right thing and they’re blossoming.”

Relationship with Jon
But Gosselin was a little less upbeat in describing the status of her relationship with her children’s father. While she raises the children back home in Pennsylvania, she says Jon has the children two weekends a month. “I wish that he would see them more, to be honest; so do the kids,” she said.

Video: Kate Gosselin on life as a single mom (on this page)

Still, Kate refrains from casting blame. “I think the important thing is that I control my reaction, my behavior, my attitude and my words,” she told Lauer of her relationship with her ex. “I’m doing what I can to reach out and communicate. What I receive back is, you know, not in my control.”

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And even though “Jon & Kate Plus 8” is now just “Kate Plus 8,” Gosselin told Lauer the kids are as happy as ever to let film crews follow them around — for five years now, it’s been life as they know it.

“It is a very positive fixture still in our lives,” Kate said of the reality series. “It’s normal, it’s exciting; they still cheer when the crew comes in the door. I would not say that if it were not true.”

The new season of “Kate Plus 8” — not a regular reality series now so much as a series of specials — kicks off tonight with the show chronicling the family’s trip to Australia last Christmas. Lauer expressed disbelief that Kate could put eight children on a 21-hour flight while avoiding a major family meltdown, but Kate said she herself was surprised by how smoothly it all went.

“It was one of the best flights of our lives,” she said. “I’m not kidding; I’m shocked to be sitting here saying that.”

“Kate Plus 8: Australia Adventure” airs at 10 p.m. (ET) tonight on TLC.

© 2013 NBCNews.com  Reprints

Photos: Jon and Kate Gosselin

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  1. CHICAGO, IL - JULY 22: Kate Gosselin takes part in the 2012 Rock 'n' Roll Chicago Half Marathon at Grant Park on July 22, 2012 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Timothy Hiatt/Getty Images) (Timothy Hiatt / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. (Health Communications, Incorpora) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Back to work

    Reality TV star Kate Gosselin has a new job -- working for a money-saving coupon website. She will be contributing blog posts to offer money-saving advice and shopping tips to CouponCabin.com. Gosselin is seen here on her first day at the new job, Nov. 11, 2011. (CouponCabin.com via Splash) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. Kate Gosselin and her eight children on "Kate Plus 8." (Clark Mccarthy-miller / TLC) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. A fresh start

    Gosselin appears on stage Thursday, April 8, 2010, in New York to introduce her new show "Twist of Kate." TLC said the show will revolve around Gosselin "meeting real families in the middle of their own extraordinary challenges." (Mary Altaffer / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. ***EXCLUSIVE*** DANCING WITH THE STARS - "Episode 1002" - In week two of "Dancing with the Stars," all of the couples returned to dance their second routines in a two-hour show, MONDAY, MARCH 29 (8:00-10:02 p.m., ET), on the ABC Television Network. (Photo by Kelsey McNeal/ABC via Getty Images) TONY DOVOLANI, KATE GOSSELIN (Kelsey Mcneal / ABC via Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. Showing a new side

    Gosselin, left, and her partner Tony Dovolani perform on "Dancing with the Stars," on Monday, March 29, 2010 in Los Angeles. In order to compete on the ABC show and spend as much time as possible with her kids, she built a dance studio in her basement of the family's Pa. home. (Adam Larkey / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Turning the page

    Gosselin is shown on the cover of her memoir, "I Just Want You to Know," which was released by Zondervan Books. In the book she opens up about her marriage to Jon Gosselin and talks about the pressures of motherhood and the hardships of stardom. On the TODAY show in New York on Tuesday, April 13, she told Meredith Vieira that she wanted to write it to give her kids "advice for the future." (AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Lending a hand

    Jon Gosselin and girlfriend Morgan Christie attend the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah, on Jan. 22, 2010. The two are shown visiting Resource's Sky Suite Lounge, where he participated in the Blanket America campaign to give blankets to poverty-stricken Americans. The couple reportedly split in March. (Jerritt Clark / WireImage) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Time to pay up

    Jon Gosselin walks past reporters after he exited the Montgomery County courthouse in Norristown, Pa., on Oct. 13, 2009. In the court proceeding, Gosselin was ordered to repay $180,000 that he took from the joint account he shares with estranged wife Kate Gosselin. Kate and Jon's divorce was finalized in December 2009. (Matt Rourke / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. Rough seas?

    Kate Gosselin and her children ride a ferry during an episode of TLC's "Jon & Kate PLus 8." The network shut down filming of the show on Oct. 1, 2009 after receiving a cease-and-desist order from Jon Gosselin. The reality dad told Larry King he had “an epiphany one day” and realized his 5-year-old sextuplets and 8-year-old twins shouldn’t be filmed at the family’s Pennsylvania home while their parents are going through a divorce. (TLC) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Milestone moment

    Jon and Kate Gosselin help their sextuplets get ready to board a bus for their first day of school in Reading, Pa., on Friday, Aug. 28, 2009. The 5-year-olds -- Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah and Joel -- are attending junior kindergarten three days a week. (Splash News) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Kate's dudes

    Kate Gosselin sports a pink cowgirl hat while visiting a dude ranch in 2009 in Wyoming with Collin, Aaden and Joel. The boys rode horses, chased goats and were utterly fascinated by the ranch, musing that the horses looked like cows. (TLC) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Reduced to tears

    Kate Gosselin dries her eyes during her interview on the TODAY show in New York on Monday, Aug. 10, 2009. Kate said her marriage to Jon would have failed whether it played out in the glare of a reality TV show or not. (Richard Drew / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Public affection

    Jon Gosselin and girlfriend Hailey Glassman are spotted together in Harriman State Park in New York on Monday, July 20, 2009. The two were hugging each other, holding hands and at one point Glassman put a flower behind Jon's ear. Glassman is the daughter of Harry Glassman, the doctor who performed Kate Gosselin's tummy tuck. (Splash News) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Unwelcome spotlight

    Celebrity magazines featuring Kate Gosselin are seen on a table in Lotus Salon in Wernersville, Pa., on May 28, 2009. The Gosselins have attracted a huge television audience with their TLC program "Jon & Kate Plus 8." As news of marital trouble gained traction, so did the tabloid coverage. (Carolyn Kaster / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Seemingly happy family

    Jon and Kate Gosselin -- with twins Cara and Mady in center -- celebrate the fifth birthday of the sextuplets on May 17, 2009. Jon and Kate reportedly arrived separately. ''Marriages can crumble very easily. I'm not dumb," Kate said. "Ours has 500 times the stress of a normal marriage.'' (Michael Pilla / TLC via AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Her reality

    A TLC camera crew shoots footage of one of the Gosselin children at the family's Reading, Pa., home. Pennsylvania's Labor Department opened an investigation in the summer of 2009 into whether "Jon & Kate Plus 8" is complying with state child labor laws. TLC said it "fully complies" with state laws and regulations. (Splash News) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Eight is enough

    Kate Gosselin attends a signing for her books "Eight Little Faces" and "Multiple Bles8ings" at Barnes & Noble in Glendale, Calif., on April 14. (David Livingston / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Ready for their closeup

    John and Kate Gosselin attend a Discovery Upfront presentation to promote their show in New York on April 23, 2008. Five seasons of the much-watched program follow the Gosselins through their daily lives and the challenges of raising multiple children. (Thos Robinson / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  21. Before the storm

    Jon and Kate Gosselin and their eight kids appear on the TODAY show in New York on Oct. 2, 2007. Almost two years later, with her marriage in pieces, Kate told Meredith Vieira, "I am as well as can be expected. I’m determined to hang in there. What life hands me, I’m going to do. My focus still is the health and well-being of my children as well as myself." (Heidi Gutman / NBC NewsWire) Back to slideshow navigation
  22. Aloha

    Jon and Kate Gosselin renewed their wedding vows in Maui, Hawaii, in August 2008. The couple originally married on June 12, 1999. On June 22, 2009, proceedings were initiated in Pennsylvania to end their 10-year marriage. The episode announcing their separation and divorce drew a record 10.6 million viewers to "Jon & Kate Plus 8." (Mark Arbeit / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
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