Savannah Chrisley is opening up about how 10-year-old Chloe Chrisley is handling her family’s legal drama.
In June, Todd and Julie Chrisley were convicted of conspiracy to commit bank fraud, conspiracy to defraud the United States and tax fraud. On Nov. 21, Todd, 53, received a sentence of 12 years in prison and 16 months probation, while Julie, 49, received seven years in prison, plus 16 months probation.
Chloe — the child of Todd’s estranged son, Kyle — was adopted by Todd and Julie. Because she has spent many years with the family, Savannah, 25, explained during Monday’s pre-recorded episode of the Unlocked podcast that Chloe is fully aware of what’s happening.
“She listens. She listens more than you think,” Savannah said.
“She’ll put on her headphones and act like she is listening to something when in reality nothing’s on,” Savannah explained.
“So, you think she’s listening,” she added, to which Julie replied, “When really she’s just listening to the conversation.”
Added Savannah, “And so, all of the legal issues that we’ve had going on, she’s heard about, and she’s dealing with it in her own way.”
“And with the help of therapists,” added Julie, who stressed that although Chloe is not her biological daughter, she still considers the child her daughter despite what others have said.
“Every child that has been adopted has biological parents,” Julie expressed to Savannah. “That doesn’t mean that we aren’t her parents. She is ours. She is our daughter. She is not our granddaughter. She is our daughter, which makes her your sister.”
Julie also echoed her mom’s sentiments by expressing that family isn’t who you’re tied to biologically through DNA.
“It’s who you choose it to be, and it’s who love you like a family should love you,” she said.
Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE’s free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.
Savannah opened up about caring for Chloe and her younger brother Grayson, 16, after her parent’s sentencing in last week’s pre-recorded podcast episode.
“I think that’s the hard part, I think there’s a level of guilt too for myself, knowing that Chloe and Grayson aren’t going to have that same feeling, of, ‘Are Mom and Dad going to be home tonight?’ ” she shared. “And I think that’s the hardest part, is me trying to navigate how to teach two children who aren’t fully developed yet, that. And how to navigate the circumstances. That’s a really difficult thing.”
“I have to be a positive role model for Chloe and Grayson,” she later added. “No matter how hard it gets, I have to show up.”