Sean Astin--what kind of family life?

OK, he’s got the ultimate nutcase–Patty Duke–for a mother. He came into existence when she married some guy she just met, got knocked up, and got the marriage annulled two weeks later.

His adoptive father and namesake is John “Gomez Addams” Astin. Who seems like a nice and stable enough guy, except that he’s a vegetarian Buddhist.

In any case, has Sean ever “told all” about what it’s like having Patty as a mom? Does he have a relationship with his biological father, whose name is publicly known?

Enquiring minds want to know.

Bonus question: I heard that Patty Duke had a total meltdown at the Oscars one year, but I’ve never been able to find a video or transcript of the speech. It’s also rather hard to google, as Patty has won an Oscar herself. Let me know if you have any clues.

(BTW, the OP is a little mean-spirited, I know. Patty was apparently pretty much tortured as a kid. That hasn’t changed the fact, though, that she has in fact been a total nut over the years, and surely Sean has some “interesting” memories. I grew up with a mentally ill father (massive depression), and I find it hard sometimes to sympathize with psychotics. However “ill” they are, however much it’s “not their fault,” they have an almost psychic ability to push people’s buttons and make others’ lives into living hells. And they will, in my experience, use the “it’s not my fault” thing to do further damage to themselves and others.)

Blind as a child, discovered a look-alike cousin as a teenager, and then married the first goth. I’d say cut her a break.

The fact that he managed the transition from child star to working adult actor probably indicates a level of mental stability far above the Hollywood norm.

I’d need a cite on his mother’s unfitness as a parent before I wanted to tackle this. Yeah, she’s had issues – but I believe she’s bipolar rather than “psychotic,” whatever you mean by that.

He has a pretty stable life with his wife and two daughters, for what it’s worth.

According to Fox TV, he was recently killed in a lightning-fast terrorist attack in L.A. Apart from that, I don’t know how well he’s been doing.

Is either of these characteristics sufficent for borderline instability, or is it the combination of the two that makes him suspect?

The words “vegetarian Buddhist” don’t really bring violence and instability to mind.

I have no idea what kind of a parent Patty was, but Sean’s conception and birth were even more convoluted than the OP indicated. Patty was dating Desi Arnez, Jr. at the time she married the 2-week guy. Desi was actually originally fingered as the father – I can remember reading a Parade story about it when Patty was pregnant with Sean. And she was also dating John Astin on the sly (he may have still been married to his first wife). Next time I noticed, Patty was married to John and little Sean was touted as his son. Patty said for years that the 2-week guy couldn’t possibly be Sean’s father, as the marriage was never consummated. And she said she was ‘sure’ Sean was John’s son. Finally they got around to DNA testing (fairly recently, I think Sean was an adult already), and it turns out that the 2-week guy really was the bio-dad. Patty clearly had a busy fortnight there – although she apparently forgot a quarter of it.

Patty is bi-polar, BTW, according to the bio I read on her years ago (where I got all the above info except for the DNA testing part, which hadn’t yet taken place at the time the book was written), has had it under control with drugs for many years. John was the stable one in that marriage during the years before she was diagnosed. Then, after she got her illness under control, John went a bit wonky and they divorced soon after that. At least, IIRC. It was a long time ago that I read the book.

But he’s feeling much better now.
I believe Sean grew up believing that his biological father was Desi Arnaz Jr. I think Patty still denies ever consummating her marriage to Sean’s real bio father (forget his name) despite the paternity test proving him to be Sean’s father.

It seems like he managed to keep his head on his shoulders despite his mother’s problems.

You know just standard Califlakeola shit.

He now has three daughters:

As the linked page states, Sean’s biological father is writer Michael Tell.

Nope. Sorry, can’t get pregnant that way.

However, it’s widely known that John Astin was raised by an obscure Christian Identity sect in rural Wisconsin, who fed him nothing but homogenized American cheese and human flesh until he was sixteen years old. This is probably where he derives his pleasant, stable demeanor from. Admittedly, it’s hard to understand why a seemingly normal person would ever convert to a radically bizarre philosophy such as Buddhism, which practically no one has ever heard of. I suspect the all-vegetable diet causes insanity. Hitler was a vegetarian, you know. And a Buddhist. And he lived in California for many years.

Unless you’re an eggplant with bad karma.

Patty Duke? Please, I woulda thought that - just for starters - Shirley MacLaine was a candidate for ulitmate nutcase.

That’s an urban legend.

Patty had a horrible childhood, she had serious problems as an adult, and has privately and publicly apologized to her children for the rough life they lived with her. She’s done her time.

And I can’t stand Sean’s acting. But I love Patty.

I saw him out at the Rose Bowl flea market a few months ago with his family (wife, kids and I assume a nanny). His brother is also fairly nice (he played Kate’s childhood friend who she accidentally got killed on LOST).

Seriously? The whole thing, or just the American cheese part? Honestly, I did find it a bit suspicious that Aryan supremacist cannibals would favor homogenized cheese over acid-coagulated curd. I should know better than to trust “E! True Hollywood Stories” for such details.

But then pray tell, where* did * John Astin inherit his persuasive aura of stable niceness from? Buddhists? It is to laugh, ha ha. Buddhists can’t even walk down the street unsupervised without lapsing into hysterical recitation of the Mahayana sutras, immolating themselves, or obsessively collecting lint and dandruff from passersby to construct elaborate sand mandalas: sometimes all three at once. Vegetarian Buddhism was actually listed as a form of antisocial personality disorder in the DSMIII until 1987, when produce industry activists successfully forced its removal.