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CNN Larry King Live

Roseanne Tells Her Story

Aired August 16, 2001 - 21:00   ET


LARRY KING, HOST: Tonight, Roseanne, there's nobody like her! She survived multiple personality disorder, abuse, depression, shattered marriages. She's still got a knack for making America laugh. You've seen all that stuff in the tabloids. Now get her story. Roseanne for the hour, with phone calls, next on LARRY KING LIVE.


KING: She hasn't been in quite a while. It's always great pleasure to have her with us. And tonight she's with us for the full hour, the wonderful actress, comedian, producer and best-selling author, Roseanne. I asked her right before we went on, did have all the money salted away? Your television show was an enormous success. I keep seeing it


KING: It'll replay forever. You are rich.

ROSEANNE: Well, you know, I'm blessed. Blessed is a better way of saying "rich."

KING: But you don't have it all salted away?

ROSEANNE: No, I said I wish I'd had a dime for every dime I squandered.

KING: Squandered like?

ROSEANNE: You know, you know.


ROSEANNE: Well, you know when you first get rich, and you like just buy everything that you see? I did that for several years. And I have sheds full of things, maybe sometimes nine copies of the same thing. And did it bring me happiness?


ROSEANNE: No, it really didn't.

KING: But when you were -- I mean, you were producing a show that was an enormous success, right?


KING: In the top 10 for how long?

ROSEANNE: Eight years or something.

KING: Eight years?


KING: Still showing in reruns?


KING: One would guess that we're talking millions upon millions upon millions.

ROSEANNE: We're talking Jerry Seinfeld money is what you're talking.

KING: That's correct.

ROSEANNE: Well, unfortunately no, I didn't ever make Jerry Seinfeld money, but I made my fair share of dollars.

KING: So we don't need to throw a benefit for you.

ROSEANNE: Well, not yet.

KING: But you're not where you're totally everything is great forever?

ROSEANNE: You know what? I am. Honestly, I'm in a wonderful place in a wonderful time in my life. And I have a 360 view of the ocean in the city. And I even live in all Asian house. KING: So you're putting me on.

ROSEANNE: I've got orchards.

KING: You are OK?

ROSEANNE: Oh, I'm more than OK. Are you kidding? Look at this ring.

KING: Let's, before we get into lots of things, let's show this ring, can we?

ROSEANNE: What camera will pick this ring up? And then explain OK, this is what...

ROSEANNE: Well, it's 10 carats.

KING: 10 carats?

ROSEANNE: Yes. KING: Explain this ring.

ROSEANNE: My husband presented to it me on my fifth wedding anniversary, which was last year. And...

KING: Does he it have a story behind it?

ROSEANNE: Yes, it does, but it's way too long and too deeply personal to go into.

KING: Oh, but it was emotional to you?

ROSEANNE: It meant quite a bit. It really, really did. I even had sex with my husband that night.

KING: That night?

ROSEANNE: Yes, I did.

KING: What's it like to wear something like that? Does it feel like...

ROSEANNE: While I'm having sex, I stare at it. And therefore I get some enjoyment you know.

KING: And you flash ships at night as well.

ROSEANNE: Yes. If the window's open.

KING: OK, now the current issue of "Esquire," big article. You told "Esquire" that you were about multiple personality disorders, right?



ROSEANNE: I am so many disorders. That's just one of them.

KING: When did you have this disorder?

ROSEANNE: I have always had it I think, since I was real young.

KING: Do you have it now?

ROSEANNE: I'm more like used to have it than have it.

KING: But?

ROSEANNE: But occasionally, in times great stress, you know, I will regress.

KING: It comes back?


KING: Explain it.

ROSEANNE: Well, I get the overwhelming urge to kill people and I'm sometimes not able to control it.

KING: Explain it, Roseanne.

ROSEANNE: Oh, OK. Explain what?

KING: Multiple personality disorder.

ROSEANNE: Well, it's a really confusing thing.

KING: Well, what happens?

ROSEANNE: It's a terrible disorder.

KING: When you have it, what happens?

ROSEANNE: Well, you just do crazy things that you don't really know you do or you don't want to do. You know.

KING: So Roseanne becomes someone else?

ROSEANNE: Of course.

KING: Like how many different people could you be in a week?

ROSEANNE: Well in a week? Well it's you know, it's infinite, infinite.

KING: You mean, endless?

ROSEANNE: I think what I am is a mirror. And when I'm around people, I pick them up and then I mirror them back. Do you know what I mean? So...

KING: So that how do you avoid the nuthouse?

ROSEANNE: Well, I'd never avoid nuthouse. I've been hospitalized several times. You know that, Larry.

KING: Yes, but I mean -- try to explain something to me.

ROSEANNE: All right.

KING: All right, you're Roseanne?

ROSEANNE: This is getting dull.

KING: Yes, real dull. When Roseanne becomes Cecelia, what happens?


KING: What happens?

ROSEANNE: Well, it isn't like that, Larry.

KING: OK. That's what I'm trying to find out.

ROSEANNE: It's not like the three faces of Eve. It's like "Oh, now I need Buck and I need to party." You know, it's not like that.

KING: OK, what is it?

ROSEANNE: It's more like there's young parts. And you know, sometimes you make childish decisions when you should be making adult decisions. And child parts come out when adult parts should be there. So basically, you do a lot of embarrassing things, you know.

KING: All right, when the child part comes out, does the adult part know the child part is coming out?

ROSEANNE: No, no, not until later.

KING: So you have to be told what you did?

ROSEANNE: Well, in my case, I would always see it on the news.


KING: So in other words, this...

ROSEANNE: It was very interesting.

KING: How is it diagnosed?

ROSEANNE: How was it diagnosed?

KING: Yes, I mean, how was someone able to say this is what you have, other than someone who just upon occasion acts irrationally?

ROSEANNE: Well, I often acted irrationally and I still often do act irrational. But well, I had these things going like, OK, I had glasses. And sometimes I needed glasses and sometimes I didn't. And I never thought about that. I'd just take them on and off. And I would be allergic to different things like, codeine and then sometimes not allergic. And you know, different things like that. And so all those kind of things, plus a great deal of stress.

KING: Could I be with you and leave the room and come in and find a completely different person five minutes later?

ROSEANNE: Yes, but you wouldn't know it. I mean, it was always pretty subtle. And it is with most people like me, very subtle switches. It's not like...

KING: Not like three faces of Eve?


KING: Not like Thelma becomes Sandra?


KING: And doesn't know who Thelma is?

ROSEANNE: No. Well, some people are like that, but that's kind of a more rudimentary style.

KING: How did you get rid of it?

ROSEANNE: Well, I did 12 long serious years of work in psychotherapy. And it was hard. I mean real hard. I looked at...

KING: Then it's not a one day thing?


KING: Where -- I mean, where you have your blessed day and you are cured?

ROSEANNE: No, you have to do a lot of emotional work. And you have to look at a lot of things you do and a lot of things you think and rearrange them all, so that they line up with what you actually do.

KING: Scary?

ROSEANNE: Because I would like say things and then do something different, which I know most people do.

KING: Example?

ROSEANNE: Say and do different things. It's just -- well I think everybody has it to a certain extent.

KING: Yes, we all -- there's a child in us that comes out at times.


KING: But...

ROSEANNE: It's just forgetting that it happened that makes it different.

KING: That's -- now that's the part that drives you...

ROSEANNE: Like you know, sometimes I forget how to drive and stuff, you know.

KING: Really?

ROSEANNE: Yes, so I'd to pull over off the side of the road and call people to come and get me and things like that.

KING: We'll be right back with more of Roseanne. We'll be taking your calls later. She's with us for the full hour. Don't go away. (BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "ROSEANNE"

JOHN GOODMAN, ACTOR: I do plenty around here.

ROSEANNE: Like what?

GOODMAN: Clean the gutters.


GOODMAN: What's the point here, Roseanne?


ROSEANNE: There is no point. OK? No point. The point is you think this is a magic kingdom where you just sit up here on your throne.

GOODMAN: Oh, yeah?

ROSEANNE: Yeah. And you think everything gets done by some wonderful wizard. Oh, poof, the laundry's folded. Poof, dinner's on the table.

GOODMAN: You want to fix dinner? I'll fix dinner. I'm fixing dinner.

ROSEANNE: Oh, well, honey, you just fixed dinner three years ago.




JOHNNY CARSON, HOST: I always say on a Friday night when we have somebody new who does comedy, because Friday night audiences are good for comedians. And she moved out here to Hollywood, where she'd been working at The Comedy Store. And this her very first appearance on national television. Would you welcome, Roseanne Barr.


ROSEANNE: So I'm fat I thought I would point that out.


Have you ever noticed that fat people don't think like skinny people? We have our own way of thinking, like did you ever ask a fat person for directions? Because that is when the difference in thinking really shows, you know. Because you go up to them on the street and ask them where something is, and they tell you like this, "Well, go down here to Arby's."

(END VIDEO CLIP) KING: What a night that was for you.

ROSEANNE: Yes, that was a huge night.

KING: First night on Johnny Carson.


KING: And by the way, you can catch back-to-back episodes of "Roseanne" weekday nights on TBS Superstation, one of our sister stations. You're everywhere, right?

ROSEANNE: I guess so.

KING: "Roseanne" is everywhere.

ROSEANNE: Yes, the show is.

KING: When you watch those scenes, you and John Goodman, have great memories of that?

ROSEANNE: I do and I miss him and how much fun we used to have every day.

KING: Great actor.

ROSEANNE: Great actor. We had so much fun every single day.

KING: How about what's he was like to work with?

ROSEANNE: Well, he was a frightening person.

KING: Here we go.


ROSEANNE: And you know, he was physically abusive at times.

KING: I see.

ROSEANNE: But other than that, we always shared a laugh whenever we were drinking.

KING: All right, some see what you have or had as a serious psychological disorder.

ROSEANNE: I like how you just keep going.

KING: Others as psychological fad. Also...


KING: Whether it's deliberately induced or naturally occurring.

ROSEANNE: Well, I have this head shrinker and he says it's deliberately induced because the CIA is where they started inducing it when after they brought all the Nazis over from Germany to run American Psychiatric Association.

KING: What are you about?

ROSEANNE: I'm telling you the truth. It is all mind control and all kinds of things to invent people with multiple personalities.

KING: So you have been captured by Nazis?

ROSEANNE: The government. Well in a way, I believe the government has implanted some kind of a chip into my head where...

KING: Roseanne.

ROSEANNE: You know, is monitored by Barbara Walters and these other women. And they take all my ideas and I'm, you know.

KING: Yes, is Oprah one of the people monitoring?

ROSEANNE: Of course.

KING: She's definitely in touch?

ROSEANNE: Definitely. I think she sits with her finger on the switch to the chip.

KING: You have problems, don't you, at times? Or are you happy?

ROSEANNE: I'm so happy.

KING: But I remember there were times you were on this show when you were unhappy.


KING: One night with your ex-husband, Tom Arnold, talking about your growing up in Utah and your family.


KING: Was that all wrong?


KING: Was he -- did he lead you to do that? What happened that night?


KING: Where? Are you another person?

ROSEANNE: What, when Tom Arnold -- when I was on here. No, what are you talking -- no, what are you talking about?

KING: You were on with Tom Arnold.

ROSEANNE: Yes, and I was talking about my unhappy childhood. KING: The subject was very serious. Right and how you were molested.


KING: Was that true?

ROSEANNE: Yes, I -- yes, it was true. It -- but my family was even more weird than that. So it was like the other weird things.

KING: That was the not weird part?

ROSEANNE: Yes, yes.

KING: What else did they do?

ROSEANNE: Well, they were kind of a little nutty, too, the mom and the dad.

KING: They were? Have you made up with them?

ROSEANNE: No, I tried to, but -- they -- it's like being on another planet, some people you know.

KING: Let me read something to you, that you wrote in "Esquire." And I want...


KING: ...your reaction it. This is your writing.


KING: In a notebook entry about yourself, you keep notebooks about yourself?

ROSEANNE: Of course I do, thousands, thousands.

KING: Thousands of notebooks.


KING: Well, this one says, "So this my life, my true E-Hollywood story. It's the story of multi, multiple multi-faceted girl, woman, boy poet, dancer, comedian, singer, freedom fighter, warrior, message bearer, performer, mother, sex partner, wife, actor, producer, director pioneer, autistic child, survivor of post dramatic stress, borderline bipolar, overweight, Turrets sufferer, multiple personality disorder, obsessive compulsive victim of psychiatric, planting of false memories, heretic witch, crone, take your pick. There's been about 300 diagnoses which proves shrinks have been my only friends."

ROSEANNE: That is true that shrinks have been my dearest friends.

KING: And all things were said to you at one time or you felt you had at one time all these king of things?

ROSEANNE: Yes. What's the big deal? How come you're acting so shocked?

KING: How are you standing up?

ROSEANNE: Well I'm not. I'm sitting down.

KING: I know, but I mean, how were you existing with all you've come through and at the same time be showbiz be funny?

ROSEANNE: Well, thank God I'm funny. I just have to say that. And you know what? For many years, I was not very funny, I was more ironic. And I was unable to be funny because there was so much anger or whatever. But, over the last few years, I really have been blessed and I got funny again. And when I got funny, I got happy. So I don't know.

KING: So you're happiest when you're making people laugh?

ROSEANNE: I love nothing more than to make people laugh unless it's to make sometimes make them think. Although they hate you when you do that sometimes.

KING: On last page of your book, "My Lives," you wrote about the people who share your body.

ROSEANNE: Yes, that's old news.

KING: Baby Cindy, Susan, somebody, somebody, Joe, Heather.

ROSEANNE: They're all gone. Yes, blah, blah, blah. Let's talk about you stumbling down Wilshire Boulevard yesterday.

KING: What stumbling? I passed you had on street.

ROSEANNE: And didn't even know me.

KING: I didn't quickly. I was walking fiercely.

ROSEANNE: Yes. Why were you walking down Wilshire Boulevard?

KING: I had lunch and I was walking to get the lunch off. And I was walking fiercely.

ROSEANNE: Oh, all right. Are you sure you don't have any disorders or secrets or things you are trying to...

KING: I was walking fiercely down Wilshire Boulevard.

ROSEANNE: All right.

KING: I'm a person of the public. I don't go the limo route.

ROSEANNE: That's right. You don't go the limo route?

KING: Oh, occasionally, basically I like people. Don't you like people?

ROSEANNE: I love people, couldn't.

KING: Well, you were out walking on Wilshire. What were you doing?

ROSEANNE: Well, I was shopping.

KING: Oh. Did you buy anything you didn't need?

ROSEANNE: Of course did.

KING: OK. We'll be right back with Roseanne on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE. If you could figure out what we are doing, check in with our web site or call in. Don't go away.


ROSEANNE: I didn't raise you to be some little bigot.

MICHAEL FISHMAN, ACTOR: I just don't want to kiss her.

ROSEANNE: Hey, black people are just like us. They are every bit as good as us. And any people who don't think so is just a bunch of banjo picking, cousin dating, barefoot embarrassments to respectable white trash like us.

FISHMAN: I don't care I'm not doing it.

ROSEANNE: Oh, yes, you are.

GOODMAN: Honey, you're overreacting. D.J., if you don't want to kiss this girl, your mom and I won't force you to.

ROSEANNE: Hey, you're kissing that girl. You're doing the play and that's all there is to it.

FISHMAN: Well, Dad said I didn't have to and Dad outranks you.

ROSEANNE: Are you new?




MADONNA, ENTERTAINER: Barbra, love you. Hello, gorgeous. The movie was like butter.

MIKE MYERS, ACTOR: Like butter.

ROSEANNE: Like a big stick of butter.


MADONNA: Please.

BARBRA STREISAND, SINGER: All this talk about food, I'm getting hungry, girls.


MYERS: Oh my, God! Oh my, God!

You're beautiful.


I love you.


KING: That "Saturday Night Live" scene. What was that like? Was that...

ROSEANNE: That was so exciting because we heard maybe Barbra Streisand's going to come. We were like, oh, and then she did. It was shocking and exciting and it was wonderful.

KING: You had a lot of great moments?

ROSEANNE: I have. You know, I really have.

KING: Since that Carson show?


KING: You made an imprint that night. That was a very important night for you, right?


KING: Made an imprint for you in America.


KING: I mean, no kidding.


KING: That was basically a terrific thing that happened to you?

ROSEANNE: It was a dream come true.

KING: When did you first sense that Roseanne had some problems?

ROSEANNE: Problems? You mean the show or Roseanne the person?

KING: Yes, you know, the person, the personality things, the other kind of things. In other words, did it just hit upon you or?

ROSEANNE: Oh no, it was always there. I mean, I always was doing inappropriate things. But that's part of what people thought was funny about me. And I thought that was funny, too. And I'd push it all the time and...

KING: So you began to use it then?

ROSEANNE: Well, I had, you know, one part that was into shocking people, and one part's a very docile, one part's very religious, and one part is you know, kind of a...

KING: So how do we know what's a put on?

ROSEANNE: Well you don't. You don't at all. And that's what I think's so funny.

KING: So wait a minute, could this whole thing, truth?


KING: Could this whole multiple personality thing be not a thing?

ROSEANNE: Well yes. It definitely could, it definitely could.

KING: Meaning, maybe you didn't have all those?

ROSEANNE: Maybe I didn't. And maybe I was like from an alternate universe or something. And I've always felt like an alien. That's all I know. And several times I wondered if I had multiple personality disorder. In fact, or if I was just from another planet another planet.

KING : Inventing. Or from another planet.

ROSEANNE: It's one of the two.

KING: You're serious with me?

ROSEANNE: Yes. I'm either mentally ill or Jewish. I can't sometimes tell the difference.

KING: Well, you're from another Jewish planet maybe.

ROSEANNE: I could be, yes

KING: You could be. Are you Jewish?

ROSEANNE: Yes, I am Jewish.

KING: OK. Do you practice Judaism?

ROSEANNE: I practice, but I'm good at it. Yes, I practice Judaism. Yes, I do.

KING: OK, so you are an observing Jew?

ROSEANNE: I'm more of a practicing Jew than an observing Jew. KING: You're not kosher like?

ROSEANNE: I'm kosher except for times where I eat pork and shellfish.


KING: In other words, you believe in God except for the times you don't?

ROSEANNE: No, I always believe in God. Oh, no. I always believe in God. Always.

KING: You never get mad to say God has done me a dirty deal here when my multiple personalities take over?

ROSEANNE: No, because I feel like God -- honestly I feel God gives you multiple personality disorder when there's too much stress in your life to handle it any other way. I think it is a gift to children.

KING: So another thing can take over?


KING: Another person deal with this?

ROSEANNE: Yes. I mean, you know, you're not the one that's insane. It's the place you are in. So you have to adapt to it.

KING: Where was the most stressful moment? Is there?

ROSEANNE: The most stressful moment of my childhood or my adult years?

KING: Your adult years.

ROSEANNE: Oh, I think I had quite a few of them. You know, I mean what with...

KING: Anyone jump...

ROSEANNE: Singing the Star-Spangled Banner was probably the most.

KING: That's the ballgame in San Diego?

ROSEANNE: Yes, that was, you know, very disappointing to me.

KING: Why did you do that?

ROSEANNE: Well, I -- why did I do that? Because I'm an idiot.


ROSEANNE: Yes. KING: Well, that's a good answer.


KING: Nobody says that, you know?

ROSEANNE: That's all I can really come up with, yes.

KING: No politician would ever say that. Why did you do that, Mr. Senator? Oh, because I'm an idiot.


KING: We'll be right back with Roseanne. We will take your phone calls, if you are on this planet. Don't go away.


ROSEANNE: You'll die when you hear this, OK, cubs in there. Roseanne, why don't you never try to be more aggressive in bed?


Do you believe that? Somebody says something that personal to you. Anyways, you gave me more aggressive in bed. So I thought about and everything. And then other night we're laying there and he reached for me. So I said, "No!"






KING: That was one of many wonderful scenes from Roseanne's talk show, which lasted what, a couple years, right?

ROSEANNE: Yes, it did.

KING: Why did that go off? I was a guest on that. That was fun actually.

ROSEANNE: It was so fun and it was like it was the greatest fun I ever, ever had in my whole life.

KING: Did it disappoint you it didn't do well or what?

ROSEANNE: Oh, yeah, it was just devastating.

KING: In retrospect why...

ROSEANNE: It did do good, as a matter of fact. KING: But?

ROSEANNE: But they didn't recognize that it did well. And you know blah, blah, blah.

KING: What do you mean?

ROSEANNE: Well, it got like a 350 and they wanted a 6, but nobody was a 6. And since they took me off the air, the highest they've got is a .09. So you know, whatever.

KING: Would you would do it again?

ROSEANNE: I would do it in a minute. And you know what? The last year of the show that nobody saw is when I really, really had fun because they had all these lawyers. And they were mostly telling me I couldn't say anything because, you know, people in Iceland could sue me. So finally I just starting doing whatever I wanted to do and having fun, particularly when I found out the entire audience were people from mental facilities and prison.

KING: They were doing that? They were...

ROSEANNE: That's who they got for my audience. And yes.

KING : Wait a minute.

ROSEANNE: People with no teeth, and stuff. And I helped them buy teeth. And you know, they came back to thank me.

KING: Well, they brought in people.

ROSEANNE: That's who -- yes that's the audience. Like I had this one lady in the audience named Betty. And she'd stand up every day and go, "Look." Because she was so proud that she'd always steal two rolls of toilet paper from like the main bathroom.

And she'd go -- I'd go, "Betty, did you get your toilet paper?" "I got them both, Roseanne." You know, and I mean the people, you know, they were being paid, the audience, $15 a day. And you know, they were unfortunates.

KING: Really?

ROSEANNE: And they, you know, there was nothing I could do but talk about like aliens from outer space.

KING: Did you want that it way? You wanted an audience like that? Are you putting me on now?

ROSEANNE: Not at first. At first I thought it was a regular bunch of people. And then it sort of deteriorated so I'd say, "Hmm, I saw that man laying on the sidewalk in front of Canters.: And, you know I tried to do intelligent topics and stuff and they...

KING: But why were they doing this to you? ROSEANNE: Because I don't know. I think it was because the chip in my head with the government and the whole thing I don't know.

KING: Oh, Oprah wanted to do this, see the show do poorly.

ROSEANNE: I think so.

KING: You think it was a plot?

ROSEANNE: It was some kind of government thing. I think they just really didn't -- I think they -- I don't know, but they do have like a hundred and some episodes of it that's nobody has seen that I really wish they would release because it's some of the funniest stuff I've ever done. And...

KING: You mean they taped them, but never showed them?


KING: Wow. I'd like to get a hold of that. It'd make a good release them as home video.

ROSEANNE: Yes, I hope we can do that sometime.

KING: We'll be right back with your only personality tonight? Right? You're not many persons?

ROSEANNE: Well, I was going say the last year of the show was how I integrated because every day would come on and host the show as one of my other personalities. And when I found that all my personalities were given, you know, center stage, and a little bit of attention and affection, I was like instantly integrated. So I owe it all to King World.

KING: You know, I think I understand what you just said.


KING: Yes. Am I OK?

ROSEANNE: I'm happy for you.

KING: I'm a little worried. I think I understood that. You were a different person every day.


KING: We'll be right back with Roseanne. We will include your phone calls on this edition of LARRY KING LIVE.

ROSEANNE: And I was nude.

KING: Don't go away.



MARIEL HEMINGWAY, ACTRESS: You know, Roseanne, we ought to hang out more often.

ROSEANNE: I was thinking that too, but next time let's leave the wives at home.

HEMINGWAY: You read my mind.



KING: That was one of the famous scenes in television history. Mariel Hemingway was here a couple weeks ago describing it. What was that like to?

ROSEANNE: To kiss Mariel?

KING: Yeah.

ROSEANNE: It was an experience that changed me forever.

KING: In what way? I'm afraid to ask you anything. That was a historic show, right?

ROSEANNE: Yes, it was.

KING: Did you know that you were taking a big giant step there?

ROSEANNE: Oh, yeah, and they had all the ABC lawyers that said they weren't going to show the show, and I shouldn't do it and everything like that, you know.

KING: But?

ROSEANNE: It was exciting. Well, then I had to! You know. You know how that goes.

KING: Did you ever have an encounter with a woman? Did you ever have relations with a woman in your life?

ROSEANNE: Relations?

KING: Yeah.

ROSEANNE: What do you mean by relations? You mean sexual relations?

KING: Yeah.

ROSEANNE: No, I have never had sexual relations with another woman.

KING: OK. What was it like then to be kissed by another woman?


KING: Television or not.

ROSEANNE: Well, it was kind of cool, because I knew it was going to make a big stink.

KING: You like that.

ROSEANNE: Yeah, I liked that part. But, you know, it was just like -- it's hard for me to be kissed. Can I tell you the truth? Do you really want to hear the truth, or do you want...

KING: Of course!

ROSEANNE: I can't stand to kiss people or touch them, because they are covered with germs anyway, and so here I was having to go through this whole thing with a thin non-Jewish person, on top of all the other fear I have of germs. So, it was a tough, tough day.

KING: You don't have a fear of kissing your husband.

ROSEANNE: Yes, I do. Yes.

KING: You do you not kiss your husband?

ROSEANNE: No, I don't touch my husband.

KING: You have relations with...

ROSEANNE: No, absolutely not. That's for younger people.

KING: You sleep in separate bedrooms?

ROSEANNE: Yes, we do. We sleep in separate houses. Yes.

KING: And he still gave you that ring?

ROSEANNE: Isn't he nice? My husband has put up with so much.

KING: Really?


KING: I wonder what it would be like to be...

ROSEANNE: To be my husband?

KING: what's it like to be -- what's it like to be him? Why don't we put him on with you one night here?

ROSEANNE: Well, he can barely speak these days. He is kind of comatose. He is an angry, angry man, if you must know.

KING: There he is, now look at that.

ROSEANNE: No, he is such a great guy. He's a wonderful person. KING: Now, you do kiss people, right?

ROSEANNE: No, I really -- I have the germ thing, I do.

KING: But you kiss your husband?

ROSEANNE: No, hardly.

KING: So, in other words...

ROSEANNE: If he makes me. Like every three months or so, he will make me.

KING: So, when you are with your husband in intimate setting, it just doesn't include kissing?

ROSEANNE: Well, I don't get into intimate setting with anybody, because I hate sex. I'm over having sex. At my age, I don't believe in it.

KING: How old are you?

ROSEANNE: You know, like you're really too old to be having sex and having children and stuff like that. I believe that at late 40s, it's over and you shouldn't push it.

KING: So, you have no desire?

ROSEANNE: I have no desire at all, and they tell me to take male hormones, because that will restore my desire, but what is that going to do to me?

KING: What does your husband think of that?

ROSEANNE: What, taking male hormones?

KING: No, that you don't have any desire.

ROSEANNE: Well, he doesn't have any either, what with all the television he watches. You know, because that like decreases your sex drive.

KING: So, he sits up late watching television?


KING: You don't have...


KING: ... so it's a happy marriage.

ROSEANNE: After five years, you don't want to have sex with that person anymore.

KING: So when you -- do you go -- do you vacation together? ROSEANNE: Yes, we vacation together.

KING: What's that like? Do you go to romantic places?

ROSEANNE: Yes, we do go to romantic places.

KING: And what's that like when you go -- you go to Hawaii?

ROSEANNE: We are going to Hawaii next week, as a matter of fact.

KING: Now, Hawaii.


KING: It's fairly romantic.


KING: Nothing will happen in Hawaii.

ROSEANNE: Oh, heavens, no. Well, I hope not. I hope he doesn't get frisky, because I just can't bear it. I would rather eat, if you really want to know -- eat and shop.

KING: You'd rather eat and shop than make love?

ROSEANNE: Yes, than have sex, yes, absolutely.

KING: Are you recommending this to your other -- to friends?

ROSEANNE: Well, they are all doing it, too. The menopausal and perimenopausal women that I know have no sex drives unless they take the male hormones, testosterone.

KING: But why not take it?

ROSEANNE: Because I don't know what it's going to do to me.

KING: You're worried about what it's going to do to you? You are 76 people! You don't even know where you are! You're worried about what something is going to do?

ROSEANNE: Well, I don't want a penis out of my head on top of it all!

KING: OK, I guess you got a point there. By the way, she said she never kissed anyone, but you kissed me once.

ROSEANNE: Yes, and that was another experience that changed me forever.

KING: OK, and we will show you that as we go to break.


KING: Hi, I'm Larry King, and on the next "Roseanne" show, I meet my new wife Roseanne.

ROSEANNE: I'm already married.

KING: So am I, but I still feel the chemistry.

ROSEANNE: Oh, Larry, kiss me like you did Marlon Brando!



KING: Guess who is on the phone? The one and only Ben Thomas, the husband of Roseanne. Are you there, Ben?

BEN THOMAS, ROSEANNE'S HUSBAND: Yeah, Larry, how are you doing?

KING: I'm doing fine. What do you make so far of your wife's performance tonight?

THOMAS: Well, first of all, I think she looks pretty hot as a blond. I haven't seen that new hairdo.

ROSEANNE: Well, he hasn't seen me as a blond.

KING: Oh, you like it, Ben?

THOMAS: I really like it.

ROSEANNE: Thank you. I told you, you would like it. I told him to watch tonight because he would see I was a blond. I became a blond two weeks ago, and he hasn't seen it yet.

KING: Now, Ben, please clear up something about the romantic elements of your marriage.

THOMAS: Yes, Larry.

KING: Tell us what -- what it's like.

THOMAS: Well, it's very -- very enjoyful.

ROSEANNE: Enjoyful?

KING: Enjoyful?


KING: Are you OK, Ben?

THOMAS: We enjoy ourselves not quite as often as we used to, but we still like to light the flame when we need to.

KING: You still have -- so there is still occasional intimacy.

THOMAS: Well, look at that rock on her finger!

KING: That's right, you don't give a girl that rock and not have intimacy.

ROSEANNE: That's right.

KING: So, you have been kidding us, Roseanne!

ROSEANNE: No. I said I stare at the ring when I need to, when you know, he is forcing me to do things, I just look at the ring.

KING: Ben, that is humiliating to you, isn't it?

ROSEANNE: How dare you start trouble between my husband and I!

KING: I didn't start it, you started it.


THOMAS: Nobody needs to start it. It happens automatically.

KING: Ben, what's it like to be married to her?

THOMAS: It's awesome, Larry. You should you try it sometime.

KING: What is it like? I mean she all these multiple personalities. She is going every which way but loose. What is it like to -- you know be married to someone like this?

THOMAS: Well, Larry, it is kind of an exciting lifestyle. It is really something new every day, and...

KING: You never know what to expect, right?

THOMAS: yeah, you wake up and we do -- you know you don't know what to expect, but that is like with everybody. You could have your good days and your bad days, your on days, your off days. But we just kind of take it one day at a time.

ROSEANNE: You know, you are a saint -- a saint from heaven.

KING: Explain.

ROSEANNE: I know how much he's put up with being married to me. And I have to test people until, you know -- little did I know, this is something I just found out just a little while ago, when you are in relationship with someone you are supposed to try to make them happy.

And I didn't know that. I was shocked. I thought you were supposed to drive them away and test them, and be really mean to them until they were emotional cripples and then they would never leave you.

KING: You nearly had a divorce once, right Ben?

THOMAS: Yeah, I passed all my tests now. I think I scored an A.


KING: Now, no more thinking of being apart. This is it for the both of you?

THOMAS: We are hoping that we can continue to have our wonderful, wonderful relationship go on until the end of time.

ROSEANNE: Or until one of us dies.

KING: What personality was she today, Ben.

ROSEANNE: Ben is out of town.


THOMAS: I'm up on the river, so I am not quite sure, but the one I see you are talking to looks like one just a little spunky. I would be careful, Larry.

KING: Where are you, Ben?

THOMAS: I'm up in the Sacramento River, up water skiing with my son. KING: Water skiing.

ROSEANNE: Yes. My husband is not Jewish.

KING: Why didn't you go with him?

ROSEANNE: Because I am Jewish.

THOMAS: Because she wanted to come on your show.

ROSEANNE: I stayed home to write. I have been -- like got in touch with my writing, and I'm so happy.

KING: You are going back on?

ROSEANNE: I'm going to start stand up again and I'm so excited.

KING: When?

ROSEANNE: Well, you know any time where I get over the fear and actually go down there, and people are so...

KING: Why would you have fear?

ROSEANNE: Because I'm terribly neurotic. Jay Leno, Eddy Griffin, all these great comics said they would help me if I would come down. I'm getting ready to do it.

KING: Are you encouraging her, Ben, to go back on stage?

THOMAS: Yes, I am. I'm trying to push her along. I wish all her fans would do the same as well,because they all want to see her back out on stage entertaining them.

KING: That is great.

THOMAS: She is a great performer and she needs to be doing it.

KING: One thing I want to ask, Ben, are you able to see the television?

THOMAS: Yeah I can see the TV.

KING: What did you make of this when you saw Roseanne in pictures with Anna Nicole Smith getting real cozy with each other? Did that bother you?

THOMAS: I was pretty excited when that happened.

KING: Turned you on?

THOMAS: Yeah, I got hot about it.


THOMAS: I wanted her to invite Anna to dinner.

KING: Aha.

ROSEANNE: Interesting.

KING: This was not anything. This is just two showbiz people?

ROSEANNE: Is that my son, Buck?

THOMAS: He wants to say hi real quick.



ROSEANNE: Did you do a 360?


THOMAS: You are on TV.

ROSEANNE: Did you get it on tape?


ROSEANNE: All right.

KING: How old is Buck?


KING: Wow.

ROSEANNE: He's a genius.

KING: Hey, Buck, what do you think of your mother? Buck.


ROSEANNE: Love you, too.

KING: Good thinking, Buck. Smart thing to say. This didn't bother you though, did it, Ben, the "Enquirer" thing, the "Globe" whatever.

ROSEANNE: No he doesn't even read any of those, no.

KING: What did you make of that?

ROSEANNE: Well, I was shocked to have seen myself in that position, because I don't -- I must have blocked it out. I don't remember it at all.

KING: Maybe -- you didn't either, Ben. Maybe you were...

THOMAS: It was a lady out having fun. She does what she wants to do whenever she wants to do it.

ROSEANNE: I have sex with whoever I choose.

KING: Maybe you were another person that night? Maybe that was Sylvia, or Phyllis.

ROSEANNE: Yes, I think I was the old man.

KING: Old man?


KING: Yes, Ben?

THOMAS: You need to ask my permission if you are giving her another one of those big wet kisses this time.

KING: No, I'm not.

ROSEANNE: He is done.

KING: She's convinced of the germ thing. Have a great time, Ben.

THOMAS: Thanks a lot, Larry.

KING: Thanks.

ROSEANNE: Bye. What a crazy person.

KING: That is so, all of this has been a put on.

ROSEANNE: Isn't he nice.

KING: You have a loving husband.

ROSEANNE: I do. KING: A loving little son.

ROSEANNE: I do and you know I have...

KING: All this is baloney. You go home, you are a normal Jewish mother.

ROSEANNE: I am, but can I tell you, and I have four grown children and they all love me and there is no greater blessing than when your grown children love you and they love to hang out with you and I have a fabulous grandson.

KING: Is all of this a put-on then?

ROSEANNE: No it is not a put on at all.

KING: So, you are weird.

ROSEANNE: I guess, you could say that.

KING: No, because...

ROSEANNE: You are kind of a control freak, if we are going to bring out people's dirty laundry.

KING: What makes you think that!

ROSEANNE: Telling me I can't look at the monitor there.

KING: I didn't say you can't. You can look except it is on a slight delay.

ROSEANNE: I can't stop staring at it. I know, I am not looking over there.

KING: You are weird. Naperville, Illinois, hello.

CALLER: Hello.

KING: Hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. Hi, Roseanne.

CALLER: I enjoy both of you.

ROSEANNE: Thank you.

CALLER: I would like to ask Roseanne, would you consider writing a book about your experience to help and to educate others especially about this chapter in your life, because I think you really are -- you are just a very real person.

KING: Do you have the problem of multiple disorders, Caller.

CALLER: I have some problems, not exactly that, but very similar. KING: Do you ever think of doing a serious work on it?

ROSEANNE: I'm going to. I'm going to write a book, definitely.

KING: You got your wish, Ma'am. We will be right back with more of Roseanne, don't go away.


ROSEANNE: A lot of men these days have a lot of sexual problems. I know. I have seen it on "Donahue." It is true. A lot of men are impotent ladies and gentlemen. And it is very, very sad. How many men here are impotent? I see, can't get your arms up either, well!





ROSEANNE: I'm going to show you my personal fat girl ritual, then I want you to show me yours.


ROSEANNE: Here is the mirror so I'll be looking straight at it. I always think I look good, straight on. I'm always like, that is pretty good. Then I screw up my courage, I do a real fast back view like that, and then I summon all of my spiritual balance to go, OK, Roseanne, you are going to go for the side view. You are going to move in there and look at the side and then I go like this -- I always (UNINTELLIGIBLE) side and then I am like, I'm out of here.


KING: That was "THE ROSEANNE SHOW" with guest, Oprah Winfrey.

ROSEANNE: Who I love and everyone knows, I hope, that I'm kidding her.

KING: I hope they know that.

ROSEANNE: I hope they do.

KING: Canton, Georgia, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Roseanne.


CALLER: I just want to let you know that you are like my major hero.

ROSEANNE: How nice. Are you crazy? CALLER: No.


CALLER: Everything that you have done, like your character, I'm so much like her.


CALLER: Your Mrs. Conner character, and I love the blond hair.

ROSEANNE: Thank you so much.

CALLER: Love the blond hair. And I would like to know how did you lose all your he your weight. You look totally awesome.

ROSEANNE: Thank you. I love to answer this question.

KING: In these clips you had to be 100 pounds more.

ROSEANNE: Thank you, put so delicately.

KING: I'm looking at it. You look a hundred pounds heavier.

ROSEANNE: I know, but here is what you said when you said it: My God you were fat. That is what you said because you are so sensitive.

KING: That is a compliment to you.

ROSEANNE: I know. I had my...

KING: I look at myself sometimes when they show clips, of me, four, five years ago. I look like the Pillsbury Dough Boy.

ROSEANNE: You are thin now.

KING: I thought I was thin then, OK. How did you do it?

ROSEANNE: You probably never see anything but your shoulders.

KING: How did you do it?

ROSEANNE: I had my stomach removed.

KING: You did.

ROSEANNE: I did. It is called a...

KING: Are you kidding me?

ROSEANNE: ... the fobi pouch. No, I had a thing called the fobi pouch, where they turn my stomach into just the size of a peanut. It is just a small...

KING: They go into your body.

ROSEANNE: They cut away your stomach. It's not the Carney Wilson thing, no.

KING: What is the other thing where they remove fat?

ROSEANNE: Liposuction.

KING: Wasn't lipo?


KING: They take part of your stomach...

ROSEANNE: They cut away 9/10 of your stomach and just leave you enough stomach so that you can fill it only to the size of a peanut.

KING: So you don't get hungry a lot, you're filled easy.

ROSEANNE: Yes, you are filled easy.

KING: Took guts to do this, didn't it?

ROSEANNE: Yeah it did.

KING: Did you research it?

ROSEANNE: Yes, I made my daughter and my best friend do it first and I thought well, if they live, I'll try it. And they did. So I did.

KING: Was it painful?

ROSEANNE: Yeah, it was painful. It was really painful. And you know. Luckily I'm able to still, though, maintain the eating disorder because I still weigh 170 pounds.

KING: But if that all works why aren't you 70 pounds?

ROSEANNE: Because luckily I'm able to keep up with my eating disorder, despite surgery and biological altering.

KING: So, even though your stomach is only taking 10 percent you are forcing through more?

ROSEANNE: All day long. I eat every 20 minutes. I eat a full meal every 20 minutes.

KING: So the operation is a failure.

ROSEANNE: No, it is a success because I'm under you know, 200 pounds which is pretty good.

KING: What was most you ever weighed?


KING: So you are down 70 from your most.

ROSEANNE: Yeah and I mean, I can still eat day and night weinerschnitzel.

KING: This operation was a failure. Are you a putting me on? Was there an operation?

ROSEANNE: Yes, I did have -- you want to see the scar?

KING: No!.


KING: We will be back with our remaining moments. Don't go away.



ROSEANNE: When I was young, feeling blue, my parents were very strict churchgoers, you know. So strict, as a matter of fact, that there was just never any room for laughter. I would -- take an Elvis pill to get through. That is what I call them: My small doses of (UNINTELLIGIBLE)


KING: That was from the movie "The Woman Who Loved Elvis." By the way, today is the anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley.


KING: Do you like doing that?

ROSEANNE: The Elvis movie? Yeah because she was like a con woman that was cheating the welfare. That was fun.

KING: But it wasn't a comedy.


KING: You like that, too, drama?

ROSEANNE: Yeah I kind of like drama but, I really like comedy.

KING: Whitehall, Pennsylvania, hello.

CALLER: Hi, Larry. Hi, Roseanne. I just want to say you look absolutely fabulous.

ROSEANNE: Thank you, dear.

CALLER: You look great and I had just this quick question. Big fan of the "Roseanne Show," watch constantly. And every time I watch it I see Roseanne Conner and Dan Conner's characters. I think they have the perfect marriage. I always tell my husband that is like the perfect husband. They have the perfect marriage, with all they have to deal with. I am just curious, being that you didn't have the best of childhoods, and you did have two unsuccessful marriages, was that a conscious effort to have that kind of character? Were you hoping that that is what you had had, what you were living or what you grew up in, you know, around?

ROSEANNE: Thanks for calling.

KING: That thing you do with the eyeballs. I think you are ready to go back to the -- never mind.

ROSEANNE: A lot of questions within that question.

KING: Based on your own childhood, did you write into that the theory of that being a good marriage based on your own unhappy relationships.

ROSEANNE: I didn't just have a miserable childhood where every day was like you know, you know. My parents, they, you know, they had for the way they were, they had a great relationship. And it wasn't unlike this.

KING: But did you bring any of that to the "Roseanne" show?

ROSEANNE: Yes, it was not unlike that at all. It was just a lot of other weird things going on.

KING: Do you believe that that couple on Roseanne loved each other a lot.


KING: You and John Goodman.

ROSEANNE: John Goodman and I were never lovers, I deny that categorically again.

KING: I'm talking about the character.


ROSEANNE: Were the characters deeply in love? Was that a good marriage?

ROSEANNE: It was a television show, Larry.

KING: I'm trying to follow up the lady's question. Did you see that?

ROSEANNE: They were characters on a television show for God's sake.

KING: OK, it was nothing.

ROSEANNE: And John Goodman and I maybe only had sex once or twice, and I refuse to -- have people say it was a full blown affair. KING: OK, we put that to rest. Thank you, Roseanne. Look forward to seeing you on stage soon.

ROSEANNE: Thank you, Larry.

KING: Thank you, Roseanne.

ROSEANNE: Nice to see you outside of Wilshire Boulevard.

KING: Any semblance between this show and persons living or dead is purely coincidental.


KING: Don't wreck the -- sit, sit! Stay tuned for CNN TONIGHT. This is Larry Forbush and you have not watched LARRY KING LIVE. Good night.