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My Father’s Abuse And The Emotional Toll It Took

Despite a decade of harassment from my father, the man who physically assaulted my mother, I have stood fast in speaking the truth and exposing his abuse. I am reposting this blog as a reminder of all of the damage this man, Mike Rinder, has done to his own family.


As you know, my campaign is Justice4Mom. That’s because my mom was abused by my father, Mike Rinder, the man behind Leah Remini’s A&E show. There’s never, ever a reason to make it okay to hurt a woman.

Harassing my brother

After my brother got diagnosed with melanoma, he was given a few years to live. My Mom and I were devastated. Your world goes upside down. So, my mom went to go see my dad, Mike Rinder. They had been married for over 30 years, and though he had deserted the family, she felt it important to tell him about his son. She didn’t ever get to tell him. He found out otherwise. He never answered her communications.

By this time, Benjamin had already gone through numerous surgeries and intensive radiation treatment. Sick as a dog, though, but on the mend. So, when we hear that Mike is there harassing my brother. He took a bunch of people he knows my brother doesn’t like and that he despises. He goes there to make it look like he loves his son, with a video camera, to make it look like he cares. Any father that would care would have checked on him.

No, he marches in with a video camera and thugs. He had to be thrown out by the police. He’s crossed the line. Mike pulls this stunt for a photo op when my brother is almost dead. This jerk, who’s supposed to be his father, is doing this.

We called up Andrew (my uncle), and we said we were going to see Mike as a family. We need to go see him and tell him to stop that. Just knock it off. We don’t want anything from him. We were happy. You can have your life. But when you come and harass my brother—it pissed me off. He’s already deserted us. He’s already treated her like crap her whole life.

“Stop it! Stop it! You’re killing me!”

We were going down Gulf to Bay. We didn’t know where he lived. I was like: “Oh, my God! There he is! He’s standing in the parking lot!”

So, my mom goes straight up to him. The next thing you know, I mean literally within split seconds, he’s got her hands in a vice grip. Her skinny arms. He’s got her hand, and he is obviously grabbing her because she’s yelling, “Stop it! You’re hurting me!”

And he’s holding tight. He’s a big guy. And she’s saying like, “Stop it! You’re hurting me! You’re hurting me!” And then he pinned her, so she couldn’t move and then pulled her arms down. She started hearing her bones cracking, and I was freaking out. And she started screaming, “Stop it! Stop it! You’re killing me!”

And this was right in front of me. I was in shock. He’s an animal. He’s not a person. I then and there decided I didn’t need this guy. I don’t need him in my life. I don’t need him beating up my Mom. And I don’t need him harassing my brother.

She is permanently damaged

Mom is still in pain every day. She is damaged permanently. She ended up getting an orthopedic surgeon who helped her. She literally couldn’t even move the joints. It took months just to get the visible damage healed. In the end, what happened is the bone that broke up was sticking into her arm bone. That is why she couldn’t move. Because it was actually broken off and jabbing into her. She was a mess from the amount of pressure and the amount of force that was put on her body.

I tied her shoes for her, made her bed for her, and cut her food for her. I didn’t mind. Not at all. That’s not the point of this. It’s the extent of the damage, the harm, and the physical trauma.

She had shirts made that had slits down the side because she couldn’t move her arm. We had to fold it on top and zip it down so she could wear a shirt. This is not exaggerated. This is literally what her life has been like. She is permanently damaged. Her arm is limp and cannot be raised. She can’t lift anything. She is in pain all the time, like right now. There is a huge problem with circulation. So every single day, she must do ice and hot and ice to force circulation.

She works out how to function minimally. The people she works with do things for her that she can’t do. She has had to have her whole place set up, so it’s lower. She is right-handed and now must operate left-handed. She had to change her whole computer. Her whole life now is left hand. But she’s right-handed. So, if she must write something, she has clipboards she bought that she can hold low and use to write. Otherwise, she can’t hold up a pen. And that’s how it is to this day.

Domestic violence is never okay

He doesn’t care. Never even an “are you ok?” let alone an apology. And yet he still gets paid to go on TV. I don’t understand it. If you agree to pay Mike Rinder, then you agree with men beating women, and you agree with men abusing women.

If anyone else had done even close to what he did to my mother, it would be major news. That guy would be out. But because we are Scientologists, he gets away with abusing us? It’s not right. Domestic violence is never okay. It is never okay to abuse a woman.

We need to take action. We need to be fighting domestic violence and making sure that it gets stomped out, that it doesn’t happen anymore and that he gets justice for this.




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