Friday, May 16, 2014

The True Story of Betty Broderick: Her Marriage and Divorce

In the Lifetime movies about Betty Broderick, she is played by Meredith Baxter Birney.  They are two of my favorite Lifetime movies, and they're based on the true story of a woman scorned!

Betty was born in a town in southern New York, and had a very strict childhood.  She was 18 years old when she met her husband-to-be, Daniel T. Broderick.  They married in 1969 and had five children.  In addition to their daughter and four sons (one of whom died within days of his birth), the couple also suffered several miscarriages.  During the majority of their marriage, Betty was pregnant with many small children to raise.

While Daniel went to medical school Betty raised the kids and was also the primary breadwinner of the family.  Her husband then changed the course of his studies and went on to earn a law degree as Betty continued to work and support their large family.

Daniel Broderick met Linda Kolkena in 1983 when he hired her as a receptionist.  She was a beautiful and gregarious young woman, a former flight attendant who had lost her job due to flirtatious behavior.  Betty accused Daniel of having an affair with Linda on numerous occasions, yet he continuously denied ever having any sort of non-professional relationship with her prior to the Brodericks' divorce.

The Brodericks' marriage became very strained, hostile and emotionally abusive.  Daniel moved out of their residence against Betty's wishes and eventually, he filed for divorce.  The divorce was a brutal event for both of them, and it took a very long time before it was finalized.  During this time, Betty had abandoned her children and Daniel was awarded custody.  Betty sent hateful, angry letters and voicemail messages to the family as she felt that she had been "replaced" by Linda, who resembled a younger version of Betty.

In 1989, after four years of legal work, the divorce became official.  Daniel and Linda married in April of 1989 and Betty moved on as well, co-habitating with a boyfriend that she'd had for some time during the separation.  The angry messages and violations of restraining order continued as Betty's anger did not seem to be assuaged.

In November of 1989 -- six months after Dan and Linda's marriage -- Betty illegally trespassed on their property, sneaking into the couple's bedroom, and shot them each in the head at close range.  Although she has denied even recalling the act of pulling the trigger, Betty was convicted of murder and sentenced to two 15-year terms in prison.  Forensic psychiatrist Dr. Park Dietz has diagnosed with Betty Broderick with Narcissistic Personality Disorder.  She's currently incarcerated at a women's prison in California.

Some view Betty Broderick as something of a hero to cast-away wives, and some as their worst nightmare.

What do you think?  Feel free to comment and give your opinion of this story!

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