Pumpkin Shannon Says Mama June Ignoring Family Has Been 'Damaging' to Honey Boo Boo

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Honey Boo Boo, Lauryn Shannon
Splash News

It's been a difficult year for Honey Boo Boo and older sister Lauryn "Pumpkin" Shannon, but they're still pushing through. And now, we're getting a bit more insight into what's going on behind the scenes with this reality TV family. In a new interview, Lauryn opened up about Alana's relationship with Mama June, and it's heartbreaking to hear about the rift that still exists between them.

  • Lauryn said that although the rest of her family can take care of themselves, Alana still needs her mom. 

    Talking to Entertainment Tonight, Lauryn admitted that her younger sister is still at an age where she needs June to be in her life, even though Pumpkin herself has been Honey Boo Boo's primary caregiver for months.

    "It's been very difficult because ... she is younger and she needs her mom. So it's been very hard for both me and her to adjust to me being her 'sister mom,'" Pumpkin explained. "And then of course her not being around her mom. She's lived with her mom her entire life and now she had to uproot and move out of that home and move in with us."

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  • Being Honey Boo Boo's "sister mom" has come with some challenges for Lauryn. 

    She called it a "crazy experience" given that she and her husband are now raising their own 2-year-old daughter as well as 14-year-old Alana. At the same time, Pumpkin Shannon had to get over the shock of realizing how bad things with Mama June had really gotten. 

    Pumpkin said:

    "We had moved out, gotten our own apartment, and things like that. So we weren't around as much. We weren't living physically in the home to see how bad things had gotten. So of course to eventually see how bad things had gotten, it was rough. It was a rough process to see her like that ... She's always told us, 'I'll never let a man come between us.' And here we are."

  • In the meantime, being separated from June has been "damaging" to Alana. 

    "In the beginning it was hard on all of us, especially [Alana] because that was her best friend," Lauren said. "They were so close and they'd done the pageants and stuff together, that was their thing. Everybody knew them for that and they knew how close they were. So that was very hard for her. And then for Mama to just kind of fall off the face of the Earth from us, that does a lot of damage to a kid. She shut down. We're trying to get the communication, but we'll see how that goes throughout the season."

    We can definitely understand that. Going all the way back to Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, it was easy to see the close relationship Alana had with Mama June. Of course this has been hard for her. 

  • Even now, Alana and Lauryn don't hear much from their mom. 

    "We don't talk every day, but when she does call me I answer and we'll have a five, 10 minute conversation that's not about very much. It's just more of I'm checking in to make sure she's OK," Pumpkin said. "And then she usually tries to text me every other day just to check in with me and Alana, of course. But other than that I haven't physically seen her in a couple of months."

    She also added that she still has hope that June will change, but of course, it's hard to make an adult do something she doesn't want to do. 

  • We're really hoping for the best for this family.

    They've already been through a lot of ups and downs lately, and it's hard to really grasp what that must be like for Alana now that she's in her teen years. 

    Our fingers are crossed that soon enough, June will see the light and decide to make some positive changes -- not just for herself, but for her daughters, too. They deserve a relationship with their mom, and we know she can do it! 

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