A little tired of………….The Little Couple

Back in 2009 my wife happened to stumble upon a new reality series on The Learning Channel (that’s TLC in TV lingo).

The Little Couple.

The plot of the show follows and chronicles the lives of Jennifer Arnold and Bill Klein. A newly married couple (of over 3 years now I believe) in their mid 30’s who live in Houston, Texas.

Jennifer is a neonatal physician at Children’s Hospital at the Texas Medical Center while Bill (along with a business partner) owns a call center in New York State.

Both Bill and Jennifer suffer from a bone growth disease called Skeletal Dysplasia which leads to their dwarfism. Jen is 3 foot 2 inches tall and Bill is 4 feet tall.

The series began and continues to focus on the couples’ stature along with the trials and tribulations that they have (and continue) to overcome.

They are intelligent, humorous and interesting. Heck, I would love these 2 as my neighbors.

Here in lies the root of my article. I am not a PC person so I will be blunt.

In my opinion, the show is viewed by us (the audience) as a form of voyeurism if you will.

Are we watching the show because Jen is a doctor or Bill is a businessman (who works from a home office)? Perhaps a small number do but for the vast majority, NO.

Are we watching the show to see how these two live their lives day to day because they are little people? ABSOLUTELY.

Be honest.

If Jen and Bill were of average height and had the same professions, would we really even care? In high probability, NO.

After the first season of the show, the novelty for me quickly wore off. These two live an average life like we all do. There is nothing special to theirs. Yes, they are little; yes they face obstacles (as we all do day to day) with some being greater than others. They even just finished building a custom made 3,000+ square foot house.

In truth, I have seen nothing on the show that the two cannot do except for possibly conceiving a child.

Due to Jennifer’s size, doctors determined it would be risky for her to become pregnant so the couple wrestled with adoption or in vitro fertilization options.

They are currently in the second season of air time trying to conceive through a surrogate implanted with their “genetic materials” logging endless frequent flier miles back and forth (seemingly weekly) from Houston to a clinic in L.A.

Jen is a doctor at the largest medical center in the world and they cannot find an in vitro center in Houston? Only one on the beach in Santa Monica, CA?

How convenient and it makes for some great seascape shots at sunset.

Half of the last season seemed to focus on this topic (the other half in completing the aforementioned house).

Why do we care?

I wish them all the success I would any couple wanting to have a child in any way they thought was appropriate (adoption, in vitro or the old fashioned way).

Now, the show has become just a “side show”. Is it not enough that we have been voyeurs in the daily lives of this couple for two and half years? But now it has extended to a surrogate couple?

Having children (and deciding how to have them) is a personal choice, not a worldwide event.

I have no idea how much longer the show will air or if they will have a child/children through in vitro or adoption. I really don’t care.

It seems to me that this couple who yearned to just be average and accepted for their stature have achieved this all TOO well. They have shown the nation that they can be just as tedious, boring and over the top as the rest of us.

In the end though like any reality show these days, it just continues to prove that we as a country will watch anything.

We need that precious “water cooler” conversation piece.

Now if I can only find my remote and change the channel.

Finding Bigfoot is just starting on Animal Planet.

  • Zazu22

    Hey, maybe we’re all a little tired of you also. Actually, I didn’t know who the author was until I clicked on this. These two people and their children are amazing, and many of use love watching them. If you are tired of it, please feel free to watch something else. Maybe an episode of the real housewives or wives with knives would be more to your liking. I hope the show lasts until these kids are all grown up and have children of their own..

  • Jane

    Bill and Jen are the classiest people on TV and that is why I love them. I can watch this beautiful couple as they raise their darling children. To me, Bill and Jen are what we all should be, regardless of what the measuring stick says. They are much more educated than most of us. I can sit and watch their show and not have to hear a curse word or see a tattoo–only great taste, a beautiful, happily married couple enjoying a lovely home they have worked for. What more could two people be? I love and admire them. If I could swap places with anyone on earth it would be Jen and Bill

  • Tink

    Will is a brat.

  • Carol Mitchell

    That Will is mowing them down and imagine a second child? Boy oh boy.

  • Lynn

    I like the little couple I think it’s one of the best shows on TLC, I sure hope they don’t stop having the show. I have watched it for about three years. It will make me sad to not be able to.

  • Barbara

    You get up on the wrong side of the bed? You don’t like it, don’t watch it. Go for a walk. Feed the dog. Read a book. Take your wife, if you have one, out to dinner, go to the gym–see? there’s lots of things you could do instead of spending time hating on two great people…..that lots of folks out here care about.
    Get over yourself.

  • Jed54

    And its much more entertaining then Two and a half men

  • Jed54

    We like the show here… hope they do not cancel…

  • http://www.facebook.com/fisherry Sherry Morris Fisher

    You can certainly change the channel! I love this show but can’t watch it now since I don’t get Discovery Health channel ;(

  • lindy

    will the little couple return to tlc any time soon?

  • http://www.zknitz.blogspot.com/ zareena

    I haven’t seen the Little Couple on in a while.  Anybody know what happened to it?

  • therealguyfaux

    Actually, I like Matt and Amy Roloff more than I do the Kleins,  because they’re crazy.  Sure, the Matt and Amy show was a gimmick (“Three average-height kids and a dwarf son!”) but the two of them were Ralph and Alice Kramden, without the threat of a punch to the kisser.  Somehow you felt Matt and Amy, despite their cat-dog marriage (which part I’m sure was embellished), believe they have the best partner they could ever find in a marriage, as in “I don’t know what (s)he sees in me, but thank goodness (s)he does!”   Bill and Jen– well, no real “drama” between them, and they’re too “nice.”  But there’s nothing wrong with “nice”; we could use a little (no pun) more of that.

  • RB

    Yes, No matter what size Jen and Bill were I would watch them if they were the tallest people in the world or just average like myself.  I really think you need to get some of your facts straight.  They are getting ready to celebrate their 5th anniversary.  There other facts that were wrong as well.  But I don’t watch the Little Couple because they are little I watch it because it a clean family show and Bill and Jen are down to earth people.  They want the viewers to see how they live and struggles they go through just like you and I.  Yes, they happen to have more struggles then average size but I am please that they are continuely inviting us into their world.  Many people love the Little Couple and will contine to do so.  I know I look forward to the show and would if they were average size individual.

    Why is it is so many what the Dugger’s because the size of their family I don’t I agree with trusting God to meet your personal needs that is why I watch them.  You could ask this show for every show TLC show and most people don’t watch it because of the size of the family, size of the individual and so on but because they enjoy a clean family show.  That is what it comes down to many stations aren’t showing clean shows these days.

  • Nicky

    Well I love The Little Couple! I think its the best show on TLC!

  • Nicky

    Well I love The Little Couple! I think its the best show on TLC!

  • Nicky

    Well I love The Little Couple! I think its the best show on TLC!

    • Kaygee

      I feel the love between them and that is a reality.
      Another thing, I have always been uncomfortable with my height. I am 4.ft. 8.5 inches, Between the Arnolds and the Roloff’s, I am more comfortable. I still get stares from time to time, but it does not feel so bad.

  • Nicky

    Well I love The Little Couple! I think its the best show on TLC!

  • Nicky

    Well I love The Little Couple! I think its the best show on TLC!

  • A Woman

    “Are we watching the show to see how these two live their lives day to day because they are little people? ABSOLUTELY.”

    Much of what Michael mentioned are reasons I have enjoyed the show. But mostly  I’ve enjoyed the show because it’s a “safe” show. To also be blunt, I don’t have to worry about breasts being exposed, drunks doing who-knows-what, curse words and/or bleeps every other word, “cat fights”, illegal activities, blatant narcissism, meanness for meanness sake, and so on. I can kick back and, yes, watch a “typical” couple have a normal & usually fun day. I can forget about the ugly of life for a short period of time and just smile. They are kind-heart people with great senses of humor; the kind of people I would love to know in real life.

    Plus, I love the fact that they live nearby… in the Texas-sense of the word.

    But to claim or imply many watch it because they happen to be little people? I think that says far more about you, sir. And sadly it’s a shallow statement.

    • Neil1981

       Hello,
      Thank you for your response.
      As stated in my response to Michael, I like Jen and Bill. I also agree the show is clean and very family friendly. I’m just asking in my article, if they were of average size, would we be watching them?

  • Michael

    I’m not surprised to read such disdain for “little people” from someone who uses his first initial in his byline. 

    Maybe some people watch the show because it feels good to see two people who have overcome a physical issue that years ago would have limited them to the circus.  In a country with an increasing population of whiners and complainers and demands for handouts, maybe it’s good to have a weekly reminder that there are still people who won’t let anything keep them from achieving success. 

    This guy and gal have probably suffered years of ridicule, and have probably been left out of Lord knows how many activities - regardless of their intelligence, ethics, or personalities – simply because of their size. 

    Unless they’re sending you the bill for their travel expenses, let them have their day in the sun, whether it’s in Houston, Santa Monica Beach, or Paris frigging France.   

    • Neil1981

      Hello,
      Thank you for your response.
      I don’t see how using a first initial is a sign of disdain nor do I disdain Jen, Bill or any small person,  in fact, I compliment them.
      As stated in the article, I applaud their achievements but am just stating if they were of average size, would we even care much less watch a show of this nature.

      • Flor

        I like the little couple and their personalities but I agree with Neil1891 when he says that if they were a normal couple I wouldn’t be watching the show.