TODAY   |  February 16, 2012

‘Little People’ stars ‘sad’ over Rosie’s comments

MSNBC’s Willie Geist talks with Matt and Amy Roloff, stars of the TLC reality show “Little People, Big World,” who say they were “taken aback” by Rosie O’Donnell’s recent comments that little people give her anxiety.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> the stars of tlc's " little people big world " are back sharing their big lives on small screen and not everything seems to be going smoothly. as they disagree whether or not to expand their sprawling oregon farm.

>> we've been talking about buying this property for ten or 15 years. would that be a reasonable -- i figured i wasn't even thinking about it because i had four kids.

>> we never thought about the fact that it was connected to our farm. that will become the commercial side of our world.

>> what do you want me to say? this is a big, huge financial investment at this stage in our lives.

>> matt and amy rolloff. good morning. i've got to know, did you buy the land?

>> you got to wait until this sunday and you'll be able to see for yourself.

>> are you going to let him buy the land? america wants to know.

>> what do you want me to say?

>> it's interesting watching the clip, because you were on for six seasons, went away in 2010 and you're back for four special episodes, you've been up front, you've been candid, there's some give and take, ups and downs in your marriage, how are you guys doing right now?

>> i think the length of time we've been married, like any relationship, there are ups and downs , i think in the long run we're doing great. we'll be celebrating our 25th anniversary this year.

>> congratulations.

>> you know, there's something to be said about that.

>> we're still sitting here together on your couch.

>> that's enough for me.

>> there's a space here. i don't know what that is.

>> smart man, matt. i'll ask you, matt, the question that we ask a lot of reality stars. and that is the question of having cameras in your lives. good for the relationship? or does it add an extra strain.

>> i think it does add a strain. it's definitely hard. but sometimes through diversity or through adversity you can build strength. so i think in the end we're saying we're stronger because of it. but definitely there is a toll that it takes, sharing your life. there will be things on camera sometimes and i would see it on tv and go, did you actually say that? and later on, we would be watching the show, did you really talk about that?

>> i think the hardest thing being on reality tv , when we see these episodes for us, that happened a little bit ago. so is it like we're reliving this again? we're over it, we're past it.

>> you get to relive every fight four times. when you're watching it on preview, when it comes out on tv and talk about it on media.

>> should i still be angry or mad or happy?

>> you can't run away from it.

>> can i ask about the kids, you have four kids, three of average height, one is a little person . he's a twin. his twin brother is now off at school in california. how is zach doing with his twin brother away?

>> i think zach is doing good. he's got his own life. he's working. you know, he's still going to school. still figuring out what he's doing. jeremy is doing great down in california. going to school. so to tell you the truth, i think with them being separated and jeremy gone, it's a lot harder on me than it may be on either of them.

>> it's an interesting point, matt. there was some emotional moments for you on the show when you were getting ready to prepare to say good-bye. how are you holding up?

>> i'm doing better than i expected. the day he left, i thought i can't live, i can't go on. but i was very emotional as you saw, now i'm feeling like this is good. i get to see him and he texts me, and never fails, dad, i love you.

>> very, very good about keeping in touch with us and you know, we skype and talk on facebook and everything. so it's great to be in touch with him. we miss him, but --

>> you can take the boy out of the farm, but you can't take the farm out of the boy.

>> we have a pretty good hunch he'll be back. he'll sow his oats in santa barbara and come back.

>> i think it's harder on jacob not having his brothers around, involved in his life with all the guy thing going on.

>> matt, you've set out in part when you started the show as advocates for little people , to change the way that little people are perceived. do you think you've achieved that goal over the seasons?

>> we think we've made a lot of progress. and then you know, we saw some stuff the other day and thought, gosh, you know we've still got work to do and there's still people out there that are afraid of little people and having fears. but i think we've made a ton of progress and i think our show has just been one of many, a lot of people have done a lot of work over the years. little people of america . we've got the bill and jen, the little couple's show. and a number of little people out there doing great work to help educate people and desensitized to the differences.

>> matt is talking about rosie o 'donnell. she has a mild fear or anxiety around little people . is that an attitude you've encountered?

>> yeah, it really is. it has been an attitude. to think of yourself in one way and to have someone else think of you that way, it plays on you. i was taken back. i was sad, really. to hear that from someone. but you know, like matt and i have talked about, it does give us an opportunity to validate what we have done, what other little people have done. there's still work to do. you're never going to get rid of it, totally. but if we can continue to open that door up more, i think it's great.

>> keep up the good work, guys, great to see you. and congratulations on the show. matt and amy. you can catch a special hour-long episode of " little people big world " this sunday, 8:00 on tlc.