Blame the victim! Mackenzie Phillips talks impact of incestuous affair

Close to ten years since the bombshell revelation that Mackenzie Phillips had an incestuous relationship with her father, the Mamas & the Papas singer John Phillips, her family is still reeling with anger. But the anger is directed at her, Phillips says.

The former One Day at a Time star first revealed the alleged incest in her 2009 book High on Arrival. In the book, she claims her father raped her at 19 when they were high on drugs and alcohol and they then maintained an incestuous relationship, which ultimately became consensual, for almost 10 years.

With the release of her new book on February 7, Hopeful Healing: Essays on Managing Recovery and Surviving Addiction, the 57-year-old drops another bombshell: some family members shunned her after they learned about the relationship.

People magazine published excerpts from the book, in which Phillips reveals she was disinvited to a family birthday party.

“Another family member was angered that I might attend,” she writes, “and I was told she was just not willing to forgive me yet. She wouldn’t forgive me! For abuses perpetrated against me as a child, or for exposing those abuses perhaps.”

Phillips, who previously struggled with drug addiction, is now a drug rehab counselor at the Breathe Life Healing Center in Los Angeles. She said she has had a support system that includes her own counselor, and it’s helping her deal with the backlash from her family.

“I’ve come to understand that some in my family have chosen to hold on to the pain and anger they felt when I came out with the truth about my dad,” she told People. “I understand that they’re still caught in a textbook response of devaluing the victim and holding up the perpetrator.”

According to CNN, Mackenzie said in an interview with Oprah in 2009 the relationship with her father ended when she became pregnant. Not knowing if the baby was her husband’s or her father’s, she had an abortion, which John Phillips paid for.

John Phillips never had the opportunity to publicly respond to his daughter’s allegations. He died in 2001 at the age of 65.


Photo: Associated Press