All Articles Tagged "Iyanla Fix My Life"
We love watching Iyanla Vanzant try to fix everyday people’s lives on her OWN TV show, but the specials that always garner the most attention are the ones with messy celebrities who we’ve known for years needed help. As we look at the latest headlines and the situations these stars have gotten themselves into, we can already see these episodes coming from a mile away.
Tags:Iyanla Fix My Life
I was catching up recently with a colleague who told me about some issues that she was having with one of her sisters. While they had always seemed thick as thieves back when we were in elementary school and high school, she shared some current feelings with me about her sister that were surprising.
“She’s just got a crazy temper and is way too irresponsible. I try to tell her stuff for her own good and she just blacks out on me. I’m over it. You know I haven’t talked to her in a year? It’s crazy. But it is what it is. I love my sister to death and would do anything for her, but I swear, as a person, I don’t like her. If she weren’t family, she wouldn’t be someone I would have anything to do with.”
And while most of us wouldn’t say that we don’t like our loved ones, as in their personality, their character and what they stand for, if some of us are honest, we sometimes feel somewhat obligated to love certain people. You love all of your family. Don’t know what you would do without them! But there’s always a few in the bunch who bring nothing but grief. Who have a negative disposition. Who take and take and take. Who judge you and make you feel less than. Who say hurtful things because they’re hurt.
You love them and put up with their foolishness, but you know that if any other person in life treated you like they do, you would probably run for the hills.
Nope, we don’t say it to them. But it shows in the way that folks interact with those loved ones.
Take, for instance, Love and Hip Hop Hollywood star Moniece Slaughter and her mother, Marla. I don’t know if you watch the show, but Slaughter, the mother of former B2K member Lil Fizz’s son, Kamron, has stated in the past that her mother was one of the reasons she lost custody of her son. According to her, Marla took Lil Fizz’s side after the former couple got into a fight soon after Kamron was born. And when police came, Marla took Lil Fizz’s side, which, down the line, allegedly aided in the rapper securing primary custody of their son. He has been the custodial parent since. It’s something Slaughter has held against her mom for years. And despite her own irresponsible behavior and confused priorities at times, I can see why.
Marla is cold.
So cold that she not only gave Rich Dollaz of all people a warning about dating her daughter but instead of stepping in to help or agreeing to talk to Slaughter about making more time to watch her son when Fizz needs to work, Marla encouraged him to seek full custody. She told him to go after her daughter’s money and just hire a nanny because taking care of her daughter’s son/responsibilities is not her obligation. And yes, I know that people say reality TV is fraudulent, but the tears of stress from both Lil Fizz and Slaughter’s eyes, and the clear exasperation Marla had when speaking of her daughter, made me a believer. Not only does Slaughter not have a support system, but her mother, who also struggled to raise her as a single parent many years ago, does not like her.
And then there’s the mother I watched on an episode of Iyanla, Fix My Life this past weekend. The woman, Norma, was at odds with a daughter, Domonique, who was seeking to take back the son she left behind during hard times. And while the past reckless conduct of the daughter couldn’t be overlooked, it was evident that her mother just couldn’t stand her. Over the years, Norma called Domonique everything from “classless” to “deadbeat mom” and a “hoe.” And as Norma tried to share her pain with her mom through a letter with Iyanla Vanzant as a mediator, Norma interrupted her over and over, attempting to refute everything her daughter said. It was so bad that eventually, Vanzant told the struggling young woman, “Dominique, you’re absolutely right: she doesn’t like you. And I don’t know why. And my heart weeps for you.”
So yes, disliking your blood, whether it’s your sibling or your own child, is not uncommon. But it should be.
Some people you just can’t reach, and others are just difficult with everyone in the family. But in the case of my former classmate, I had to remind her of how significant and precious it really is to have a sister. And after losing one of my siblings almost a decade ago, I don’t believe in holding grudges with people who are a part of you. Because you just never know what tomorrow will bring or take away. Yes, some family members can be toxic, and they likely deserve to be kept back at an arm’s length. But I think most just need a good talking to.
Therefore, I encouraged her, as I would any of you avoiding a family member who is important to you, to try and be the bigger person and reach out. If her sister chooses to keep her wall up, at least my colleague knows that she tried to make things right and could leave the ball and the burden in her sibling’s court.
We do so much talking about our family members but fail to talk to them when they make us feel disrespected. And instead of letting them know what behaviors you can’t tolerate, we say nothing, allowing them and their behavior to get worse. Allowing our anger to build. Allowing the distance between our loved one and ourselves to grow further and further. But there’s nobody in the word like your blood. And while you might be just fine with dropping friends and making new ones, and dumping boyfriends and trying your luck out there in the dating field, you only get one family.
People speak about a woman’s intuition almost jokingly. Like it’s not to be taken seriously. But it can prove to be quite important. And oftentimes when we ignore it, regret soon follows.
Even seasoned women who seem to be very in touch with their emotions and feelings don’t always do what their mind, heart and spirit instructs.
Recently, Iyanla Vanzant, who makes a living off of unearthing the emotions in others spoke about a time when she ignored her own knowing and how she fears it affected her work.
In a recent interview with Essence.com, Vanzant spoke about second guessing herself and referenced the volatile episode with rapper DMX.
“I never second guess myself because I’m not committed to the outcome. I can’t want more for them than they want for themselves…I failed one guest,” she said. “I failed DMX because I was guided and directed by the Holy Spirit to do something and I didn’t do it. And I don’t know had I done it, how the show would’ve turned out…But that was my failure and I have never done that again. What the Holy Spirit tells me to do, I do much to the horrification of my producers.”
Take that as a friendly reminder ladies. When you know, you know and should act accordingly.
In addition to DMX, Vanzant also spoke about what entity she would like to work with next on her show: The Black Lives Matter movement.
When Michael Brown was killed last year in Ferguson, Missouri, Vanzant and her OWN crew traveled to the city. There she prayed, spoke to a family member of Mike Brown, protestors and even a police chief. And while she acknowledged the necessity of the movement and the protestors there, she also made sure to mention that the activists would have to develop clear “asks.”
She wanted to know what type of legislation or policy changes the protestors, activists and community leaders were hoping to achieve. And since she believes the movement lacks the ask portion, she told Essence.com, that during season 4 of “Iyanla: Fix My Life,” she may challenge some of the young people involved to use the hashtag to do something more than just tweet and march.
Do you think Iyanla is the right person to take this on? Do you agree that the Black Lives Matter movement needs clear asking points?
Jesus wept when we learned, earlier this year, that Jay Williams was coming back to OWN with a new docuseries.
But apparently, he may have heard some of your prayers about it not coming to pass. Because, midway through production, the OWN announced that they’ve decided to pull the plug on Jay, his 17 baby mamas and their 34 children.
The network released this statement:
“OWN has decided not to move forward with the Jay Williams docu-series. The series aimed to follow Jay as he worked to put his life and fractured relationships in order and to hold him accountable every step of the way. The intention was to help Jay work to establish new connections with his family, his children and the mothers of his children. Production has ended and the series will not air.”
Sources told theGrio, that production for the docu-series wasn’t playing out the way the network had hoped.
When OWN made the announcement about the show, they said that cameras hoped to document Jay as he worked to heal and establish new connections with his fractured family.
This is certainly interesting to me. And actually, reminds me of the open letter his daughter Amina Mosley wrote, where she stated that her father had become a bit of an attention-seeker after the cameras started documenting his troubled relationships.
Perhaps OWN learned the same thing…or maybe things just got uglier. Either way, Jay Williams really didn’t need any more public exposure. And whether someone is broadcasting it or not, I would hope he and several of his family members get some professional or spiritual help so they can begin to clean all of this up.
While watching the interview between Iyanla Vanzant and Karrueche Tran last night, I got this familiar feeling. It was hard to pinpoint at first, but as I hung onto every word, every question, every answer that was presented in the interview, I no longer felt like I was watching someone else’s life story play out on TV – I was in a counseling session of my own.
As Iyanla pointed out to Karrueche in the beginning of their discussion, Karrueche’s story isn’t exclusive to just her…or even just women in her age range. While it may seem that women in their 20’s are the only ones who make certain decisions when it comes to relationships, a grown woman such as myself has made the same mistakes well into her 30’s and beyond. Staying in emotionally and mentally abusive relationships way longer than we should was something I could totally relate to, and as I watched Karrueche search her mind to understand why she did it, all I could do is see myself in her eyes. She wanted to be heard, but she also didn’t want to be judged. But when you’re in a situation that you know is unhealthy, there is no “good” answer you can give as to why you stayed that doesn’t involve coming to the conclusion that you are broken somewhere inside…and that’s hard to face.
Emotional abuse can be hard to quantify, whereas physical abuse can show an obvious line in the sand. And even when physical abuse is involved, it’s still difficult for some women to leave out of fear. So imagine trying to justify staying when it’s “only” emotional abuse…so far as we could tell anyway. I don’t recall Iyanla asking Karrueche if Chris ever laid a hand on her, but I do recall her asking if she knew about his past with regard to the physical violence against Rihanna. Most of us would say that we’d never date someone who we knew beat up another woman. But like most women, Karrueche thought she’d be the one to change him. She said she wanted to love him, because that’s what he needed. She wanted to love him into being a better person and she felt like a fool when loving him wasn’t enough.
I know, because I’ve done that myself. We think if we love him hard enough, he’ll see “the light.” If we provide a good example of what love is, he’ll have no choice but to love us back the same way in return. And when that doesn’t work, we love harder. We fight to stay with someone who is doing nothing to keep us. And then the dysfunctional attachment becomes “normal” to us until we either wake up and come to the realization that no amount of love can “save” him, or we hit rock bottom within our own soul that we now have to save ourselves.
While I cannot imagine living out such drama publicly as Karrueche has with her relationship, I found myself wishing last night that I had the public scrutiny, gossip and even ridicule she has endured in order to force me to leave sooner. So many women suffer emotional (and physical) abuse in silence for fear of being judged by those close to them. They keep it a secret because they know deep down inside they’re not ready to remedy their situation, so rather than listening to friends and family wonder why you’d stay in a situation like that, you hold on to your pain and shame in silence. It wasn’t until I told my sister and best friend of the abuse that I suffered that I knew I was ready to actually do something about it. I knew they’d support me and hold me accountable. And a weight had been lifted. Hopefully Karrueche feels free as well.
While I’m no therapist or life coach, I felt like even in the midst of all her pain, Karrueche was still trying to protect Chris Brown. I felt like Rihanna did the same when she finally spoke out about her abuse. That is what we women (and some men) tend to do…nurture, protect and be loyal to the very men who hurt us but claim to love us. We want to believe that what they actually feel for us IS love. But while our abusers may love us the only way they know how, you have to come to the conclusion that anything that feels less than love is not good enough. Love shouldn’t feel disrespectful, fearful, belittling, humiliating, retaliatory or physically painful. Love is supposed to make you feel good and build you up, not bad and tear you down. My prayer for myself, Karrueche and all the women who have suffered – and are suffering now – with emotional abuse is that we find the strength to face our situation head on and finally choose to love ourselves enough to leave…for good.
I don’t know if you’ve noticed but Terrell Owens is attempting to rebrand himself. First, he sat down with Iyanla on OWN,
married that random, White woman and then showed up on “Celebrity Apprentice.” And while he is trying, a lot of people are still hung up on what the hell happened to his career, his friendships, and in Wendy Williams’ case, his money.
And even though she mispronounced his first name and substituted Williams for Owens, Wendy, still wanted to know what exactly does Terrell Owens do for money now that he’s no longer in the NFL, doesn’t have his own show anymore and is no longer on “Celebrity Apprentice.”
The whole topic of money led Wendy to ask Owens if he felt like Kita Williams and Monique Jackson, his former publicists shafted him in any way.
Here’s what he said:
“They did do some things that were uncharacteristic for myself. Growing up, and as I’ve matured, sometimes you have to listen to your intuition and you have to listen to your parents. My mom, she felt a certain way towards them and I just didn’t take notice to it. Again, I have to be my own man at some time. I really thought that they were my friends but obviously, otherwise.”
You can watch the full segment in the video below.
Well, Kita didn’t take too kindly to that and in a recent interview with C. Nikky, Kita spoke out about Terrell’s loose, and in her opinion, lying lips.
“We have had the most amount of good, bad, highs and lows with Terrell Owens, or as Wendy called him on the show Terr-ell Williams. But what I will say is this–because I don’t throw shade, I don’t throw mud. I definitely believe in being a woman of integrity.–But Terrell is completely out of order when he talks about Monique and I doing him wrong.
Ultimately, that show was about him and it included us. Monique and I sold the show. We never took a percentage of his money. We never dealt with his money, the 13 years that we’ve known him, so we’ve never stolen his money from him. And I just want him to be clear about it.
One of the things about Monique and I is that– I will say is true– we always pushed him. And if you notice on “Celebrity Apprentice,” he’s trying to change his brand and that’s what the show did for him. So all of these opportunities Terrell Owens, excuse me Terrell Williams, that you’re getting is a result of you doing “The T.O. Show,” which is what Monique and I did for you. So, you’re welcome.
As far as clarity is concerned, Monique and I have never done anything to defame his character and I won’t do it now. But if he continues to say things, it can mess with my money. I work with other celebrities, who’ve done more than catch footballs, and it’s unfortunate because if they hear him say things that make them think that our characteristics are a bit shaky, it’s messing with my professional lifeline and my brand. If he continues to do that, I will sue.
At the end of the day, Terrell Owens didn’t make me. This chick here has an MBA, before you boo. And I will continue to move forward. So love, light and many lessons and blessings. And I wish him well and I just want him to do the same for us. You don’t have to like me or love but at least respect the fact that we’re no longer going to be on this journey together. So, ‘How You Doin’.”
Then C. Nikky, asked Kita if either she or Monique had reached out to Terrell…and that’s when she really started spilling the tea.
I wish we could really tell you why he’s upset. If you saw a little bit of “Celebrity Apprentice” they eliminated him because he didn’t raise any money. You know? And the hard part about that is, you have to look at that from the perspective of you’ve been in this business with multimillionaires, athletes, celebrities. You’ve hob knobbed with so many and you couldn’t get a couple of checks beyond $2,500? So it says a lot in terms of the seeds you’ve planted in the past and the bridges you’ve burned. It has nothing to do with Monique and Kita. It has everything to do with Terrell Owens, the man. So from his baby mama drama, to his problems on the field with his quarterbacks and his teams, we’re not the issue.
So we’ve definitely tried to reach out to him. In fact, the “Iyanla Fix My Life”… What he does not know is that we set that up for him, blindly. Because we felt like he needed it. We felt like he needed to see himself and fix it! But ultimately, there’s been a lot of things that we’ve continued to pass on to him anonymously, that has money attached because I’m not a hater.
I just saw him at the Golden Globes party…He couldn’t take it because I was there just like he was there, not because of his name but because of mine. He’s uncomfortable when he sees us because he knows there’s unfinished business. Terrell is not good with confrontation. Monique and I will speak the truth. And when he’s ready to sit down to talk, I’m ready. Because the lies that he is telling right now, are really getting on my nerves.
I went through several different emotions watching this interview. First, I was sympathetic to her animation. People affecting your business with what you perceive as lies, will have anybody ready to defend themselves. But while Kita said she doesn’t throw shade, there were a few times in there where she did just that. Clients who do more than catch footballs. Terrell Williams. Anyone can see that’s shade.
And just when I was starting to think she was taking the petty route, Kita brought up that point about she and Monique setting Terrell up on “Iyanla Fix My Life,” and my eyes bulged. Nothing will upset you more than going out of your way to help somebody and they turn around and attempt to drag your name through the mud.
So, while Kita’s response was definitely not shade free, I believe her. And the crunkness was warranted. Like she said, Terrell’s own track record shows he’s not exactly good at maintaining relationships…personally and professionally. The fact that Monique and Kita are continuing to look out for him when they don’t have to and are still willing to sit down and have a conversation with him, seems to speak volumes about their true intentions.
You can watch her full interview with C. Nikky in the video below.
“Who Holds Him Accountable?” Amina Mosley, Eldest Child Of Jay Williams, Writes Open Letter To Iyanla
We’ve talked extensively about Jay Williams and his large family on this site. We’ve talked about his parents, the women who had his children and even the other men who seem to be following in his footsteps. And while Iyanla said she dealt so heavily with the mothers because she knew they were raising the children, aside from that meeting with Jay on the couch, we didn’t hear too much from them.
Well, all of that changed recently when Jay’s oldest child, daughter Amina Mosley, wrote an open letter to Iyanla, sarcastically thanking her for fixing her father. In it, she explains that instead of being held accountable for his actions, Jay got to walk away from the experience a bit of a superstar, without dealing with the broken relationships with his children.
See what she had to say.
I joined my siblings on the couch as we sat across from you, and then my father entered the room. In that particular moment, it felt like seeing a ghost. I hadn’t had any contact with my Father in over a year, and I was not at all pleased to be in presence. I just could not seem to wrap my head around my father knowing exactly how to reach me and where to find me all of this time but was only willing to talk when there was a camera around. Needless to say, my guard was up, and I did not believe that anything positive could come from this show. I began to worry about my siblings feelings, my family’s reputation, and I even questioned how I could receive any healing with my Father from that conversation. I left Atlanta feeling frustrated. All of the feelings about my Father that I had long since suppressed had resurfaced, and I did not want to deal with them, so I didn’t. I tucked my feelings away as I had so effortlessly done before, out of site out of mind. That is until the first show aired.
It was as if I was listening to someone else’s story, about a family that I didn’t even know. I could not believe that this man has 34 children! I could not believe that all of these women just let him get away with this! Why didn’t he just get a vasectomy? How did he get to this point? Furthermore, How can this be “fixed”? So just like any other viewer, I tuned into the next episode, and the next, and the next. I was able to see how what he created actually looked from another perspective, and was left with one question: Who holds him accountable?
So here’s what I learned from this process; It was never about highlighting the extraordinary circumstances of my family, it was about healing and finding your inner peace. This has tested my ability to compartmentalize the feelings that I have toward my father, so that I don’t allow his mistakes to mold my decisions. I also have to be cautious as not to project my feelings onto others. I am not just the eldest of 34. Who I am and what I feel as an individual does matter. His absence in my life is not a detriment. In fact, it has actually made me stronger, and serves a greater purpose. I know that things may not ever be perfect between my father and I. I am also aware that the time has passed for him to be a Dad, but I felt that this experience would at the least open up dialogue between us, possibly even maybe one day developing a friendship. So, with that thought in mind, before I left Atlanta I took a picture with my Grandfather and my Dad just so that I could have some inspiration to hold on to.
When I look at that photo, I see a young woman standing in between two of the most important men in her life. She is happy because she knows that the man to her right loves her, provides for her, protects her and she trusts him. She knows that when she calls he will answer, and that he will always put her first. She is his first child, Daddy’s little girl And he always has her best interest at heart.
She also knows that this is not real. This photo represents a “fantasy” of the Father that she never had. The reality is that this is the first photo she has ever taken with the two of these men together at the same time.
When the story of Jay Williams and his 34 children by 17 different women aired on OWN, social media erupted with all types of judgement. Judgement for Jay and judgement for the women who dealt with him in the past and those who continue to deal with him. Iyanla said that more than anyone, she wanted to make sure the women, the mothers, were working towards healing because they were the ones who were raising the children.
So she followed up the three part series with Jay by meeting up with the women again. But this time she had other women in the audience because, as Iyanla said, over and over again, the women who had been with Jay were not all that different from us all.
If you missed the series, know that she dropped some knowledge. Here are some of the lessons we took from the episode.
“That Was Like A Message From God”: Iyanla Says Man With 34 Kids Sought Her Help After Losing His 35th Child
As we told you from the list of things we took away from Iyanla Vanzant’s work with Jay Williams, we’ve been pretty invested in following the story of this man and his 34 children by 17 different women. Turns out, so have you, because the final part of his “Fix My Life” special brought in the show’s biggest ratings since last November. Williams has received a lot of criticism for bringing so many children into the world that he knew he wouldn’t be able to be fully present for. And when Williams contacted Vanzant with his story, she told Sister2Sister that she initially didn’t want to touch it with a ten-foot-pole because she knew it would require a lot of work, more work than she could fit in 60 minutes (make that around 45 with commercials) of television.
“I wouldn’t have done the story if I only had one episode.”
But she was moved. Vanzant says that it was the loss of his 35th child that really pushed Williams to want to do better, so after working to get a multi-part special on Williams, Vanzant got to work.
“In his mind that was like a message from God that you need to look at your kids. And I think in his assessment of his children, he realized that he wasn’t having a good relationship with his children and their mothers and he wanted to do something about that.”
And even after three episodes of trying to get down to the bottom of Williams’ issues, Vanzant says there is still more work to be done. More so for the mothers who were on the show and the women who watched it at home who entertain similar drama with the men in their lives.
“What we’re doing is, I want to have a conversation with the women because that story was about Jay, and his background and his interaction with his children and his relationship with the women. But I want to understand the women. What were they looking for? How did they allow a penis to come between us? I think that’s a conversation that requires some attention because their situation is not unique either.”
Vanzant tells us that while Williams’ story was hard to hear, we should all watch the things we say about him.
“I think that when we’re on social media spewing that negative energy, that we forget that the people we’re talking about have children, have parents, have sensitivities and have issues. People aren’t on ‘Fix My Life’ because they’re living at their highest potential.”
Oprah struck a full gold mine with “Iyanla Fix My Life.” And with each season, the show gets better and better. There’s something about watching other people’s dysfunction that either, makes you see your own or makes you feel a bit better about your life. For the past three weeks, we’ve watched as Iyanla met with a man, Jay Williams, who has fathered 34 children, with 17 different women. We’ve talked about it before but now, after seeing all three parts of the mega fix, there are some things we just have to talk about.