All Articles Tagged "OWN"

Should Women Talk About Their Miscarriages?

July 22nd, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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In the first episode of her show, “Living Lozada,” Evelyn Lozada announced, much to our surprise, that she was expecting another child.

Sadly, the exuberant feelings didn’t last too long, in the promo clip for the next episode, her doctor told her that her hormone levels were so low, they seemed to suggest that the pregnancy wouldn’t come to term.

Later, in an interview with People, Lozada confirmed that she did indeed have a miscarriage.

“When I went to my first appointment, everything looked great. My progesterone levels were good.

My hormone levels were dropping. My doctor said, ‘Let’s just see what happens and if anything changes.’ ”

 “At my next appointment, my ultrasound went from looking really perfect and beautiful to looking pear-shaped,” says Lozada. “You could just tell, it didn’t look normal.”

Sadly, the process wasn’t a smooth one.

“for me the most heartbreaking thing was knowing that it could take up to a day to maybe a week for it to happen,” says Lozada. “I became so obsessed with it. I kept taking pregnancy tests and one would come out positive, then one would come out negative. It was so hard not knowing when I’d lose the baby.”

The miscarriage finally happened during a photo shoot her family had scheduled to help her feel better.

“I had to stop the photo shoot and just lay down. It was hard.”

Though Evelyn had the love and support of her family, she said it was mostly an experience  she endured alone.

“You have a million and one questions in your mind as to what happened. You just feel responsible. It’s your body. It’s a loss that only you can relate to.”

Evelyn questioned everything, from the things she ate during her pregnancy to her age.

“It’s nothing that you ate, or did; it’s not your age. One out of all four to five pregnancies end in miscarriage,” she explains. “I have three girlfriends and it’s literally happened to each and every one of them.”

I responded to the news that Evelyn was pregnant with joy. Yet, others thought she was too old to be having more children. As someone who comes from a family where women have babies into their forties, I didn’t see an issue with it. Particularly, at a time in her life when Evelyn is not only in a seemingly more stable relationship but she’s in a better emotional and psychological space. A better adjusted mother is an asset to a child.

Plus, I thorough enjoy women over thirty giving birth to children, defying the notion that we all need to rush to have children before we’re all “dried”and”shriveled.” We all have a different story. And they don’t have to include a husband and baby before 30. There is life after 35. You can even produce it.

And like the news that she was pregnant, people are equally disappointed with Evelyn’s decision to share her miscarriage story, claiming that she was using the tragic event to further promote her show.

That’s a given. All reality stars are profiting off the stories of the lives, good, bad and ugly. While many are tripped up over the method, I think the message is a pretty necessary one.

Like Evelyn said,  many women have suffered from miscarriage and many of them needlessly blame themselves for the loss. There’s a certain level of shame many women feel about having lost a child, so they keep the traumatic nature of their experiences to themselves.

My mother who had at least two, possibly three miscarriages, before I, her first child was born, describes that own period in her life as rather dark. She spoke about hearing a ripping sound and realizing she’d lost a child, trying to collect and save one of the embryos and feeling like everyone around her had a baby.

I don’t say that to be morbid, though it is. I say that because it’s such a common occurrence and women need to know that there is hope after this.

And that’s the message Evelyn was trying to spread in sharing her story.

She concluded her story with People saying, “This was just another tragic incident in my life that I had to deal with. But I say God doesn’t make mistakes. Women just need to hold out hope.”

Evelyn is taking her own advice and is still optimistic about the prospect of having a child. “I’m not checking for when I’m ovulating or anything. I’m like look, I’m pushing 40. I’m going to be 50 with a 10-year-old! If it happens again, that will probably be my last.” 

Will Evelyn gain further exposure from this story. Of course. You’re reading about her right now. But I’m also sure her words will help someone who believes their suffering through this alone.

First Look: Evelyn Lozada’s New Reality Show, “Livin’ Lozada” [Watch]

June 30th, 2015 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Nearly two years after she chucked the deuces to VH1 and “Basketball Wives,” Evelyn Lozada is preparing to return to reality television. On Saturday, July 11, the mom and wife-to-be will be premiering her new docu-series, “Livin’ Lozada,” which is slated to air on OWN.

As previously reported, the series highlights Lozada’s new life with her fiance MLB star Carl Crawford, her 1-year-old son Carl Leo and her daughter Shaniece Hairston. Viewers will get to witness the 39-year-old learn to be a mom to a small child again, 20 years after the birth of Hairston, who recently celebrated her 22nd birthday.

In addition to gearing up for the premiere, Lozada and Hairston are also celebrating the launch of her #SippinBeauty challenge in conjunction with youthH2O age defying system and Vitamin World. The mother-daughter duo is inviting fans and beauty enthusiasts to partake in the 60-day challenge, which requires them to consume the daily supplement that is said to have hair, skin and nails benefits.

“youthH2O has so many endless age-defying benefits, it’s all natural and with their new delicious Blooming Apple flavor and improved formula for hair, skin and nails, I’m excited for everyone to experience healthy growing hair like mine,” said Lozada.

Over the next few weeks, participants are asked to document their progress with hair selfies on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram using the hashtag #SippinBeauty. Lucky entrants of the challenge will be awarded gifts and prizes.

“When it comes to hair and beauty treatments, today’s modern women need simple, easy to manage, healthy beauty regiments,” stated Sherry Zikria, Director of Marketing for Revival Labs. “The Summer #SippinBeauty challenge will reinforce our message for everyone to have a healthy lifestyle choice with youthH2O and Vitamin World.”

“Livin’ Lozada” debuts on OWN Saturday, July 11. Will you be tuning in?

Follow Jazmine on Twitter @JazmineDenise

Prayers Answered: OWN Cancels Jay Williams Docu-Series

June 4th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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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.

Janet Mock Sits Down With Oprah For Super Soul Sunday

April 29th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: OWN

Bruce Jenner is not the person educating the world and giving voice to an often ignored and misunderstood community. Janet Mock, the former website editor for People turned author and activist, is sitting down with Oprah for an episode of Super Soul Sunday this weekend to talk about her own personal journey.

For those of you who may not know Mock’s story, she was living in New York City, working her dream job. She kept the truth of her past life private. Then in 2011, Mock shared her story with Marie Claire magazine. Though she later took issue with the piece, specifically the title “I Was Born A Boy,” the story opened up a world of possibilities for her.

She quickly became one of the most visible and influential trans women in the world. Today, she hosts a show on MSNBC and has written a memoir called Redefining Realness. 

During her sit down with Oprah, Mock will discuss knowing at as early as five-years-old, that she was a girl. She says:

“As a young person, you don’t have much agency or decision-making. And so you just go wherever people pick you up and take you, and say that this is the way the world is,” she says. “And something internal inside of me told me constantly that what they’re saying is wrong. And so it creates this dissonance with who can you trust if you know that inside, as a 5-year-old, that this is how you know yourself to be.”

Check out the clips from the upcoming interview in the videos below.


You can catch Mock’s interview on OWN at Sunday, May 3 at 11 am ET/PT.

Jay Williams, Man With 34 Kids, Is Coming Back To TV…With His Own Show

March 25th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Oprah and OWN are determined to dominate the ratings this year. Now that the network has pinpointed exactly what it is viewers want to see, they’re on a roll.

This September the network is sticking to the formula and reuniting with Jay Williams. For those who don’t remember, Williams is the man with 34 children by 17 different women. Iyanla sat down with him and several mothers of his children for one of her “Fix My Life” shows.

According to Variety, this time around Jay, of Atlanta, will have his own show where he will try to mend the relationships with his family, children and mothers of his children. Iyanla will be helping to guide him along the way.

While Jay certainly needs to “do the work,” to borrow a phrase from Iyanla, I do wonder if all of this fame and recognition is going to his head.

At the same time, with his track record, full of irresponsibility,  it’s doubtful that Jay would attempt to repair these relationships without the cameras around.

Which might have been what his daughter was arguing all those months ago when she said she resented Iyanla for giving her father another way to dodge his issues. 

I still don’t believe Iyanla is to blame, particularly when Jay is ultimately the only person who can hold himself accountable. But I do get the sense that he’s more interested in being seen than he is in repairing and rebuilding the relationships he’s broken.

What do you think about Jay getting his own show? Is it more hurtful than helpful?

She’s About That Life: Evelyn Lozada Announces New OWN Series, “Evelyn”

March 25th, 2015 - By Lauren R.D. Fox
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Last month we reported that Evelyn Lozada wasn’t interested in returning to the Basketball Wives franchise. She shared with fans via Twitter that the series was no longer a good fit for her life and that she was moving on to bigger and better things. Today we’ve learned what one of those bigger and better things is: Lozada has found a new TV home at the Oprah Winfrey Network. With the help of her family, Lozada will debut a new reality show, currently titled Evelyn.

Slated for a July premiere, Evelyn will revolve around Lozada’s balancing act of mother to a 21-year-old model/college student and 1-year-old. Viewers will also see how Lozada’s relationship with fiancé, Carl Crawford, plays out. The Wrap shared OWN’s description of the show and it reads as follows:

“Evelyn” (working title) follows the lives of Evelyn Lozada, of “Basketball Wives” fame, and her 21-year-old daughter Shaniece. Evelyn is engaged to big league baseball player Carl Crawford and the couple just welcomed their first child, Carl Leo Jr., to the family last March. Between learning to be a mom all over again, setting up a new home in Los Angeles for her and her family, running several businesses as well as dealing with issues surrounding her family back East… Evelyn has a lot going on! Not to be outdone, her daughter Shaniece’s modeling career is taking off resulting in a flood of business opportunities with no clear choice of which to pursue, leaning on her mom for advice which she (sometimes) takes. Each episode is filled with close friends and relatives in the ladies’ lives who help round out a world filled with laughter, support, encouragement and tears as we follow Shaniece carving out the new life before her and Evelyn finally feeling like she has the life she deserves.

Evelyn will be produced by Shed Media, the same media company who produced Basketball Wives on VH1.

Will you be tuning in to see how life has changed for Lozada?

Watch: Iyanla Vanzant To Speak To Karrueche Tran

March 17th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: OWN

Source: OWN

Ooo chile! TV is so delicious these days. And I can see right now that Oprah and her OWN network are determined to win the entire game. It was just two weeks ago that we learned Chris Brown fathered a child while he was dating Karrueche Tran. And right around the time she was trying to process it all, the OWN crew reached out to speak to her.

She’s not going to be sitting down with Oprah for a “Next Chapter” interview, she’s about to get a dose of realness from the one and only Auntie Iyanla Vanzant.

From the sneak peek recently posted on the network’s Facebook page, Iyanla is going to be asking some pretty hard questions.

He betrayed you 

He lied to you 

He did it all publicly

How did you find out that he had a baby by another woman?

Have you spoken to him 

And finally: What I want people to know about Chris Brown is ________?

I’m sure we could think of some adjectives to put in that blank.

Check out the preview in the video below.

 

The sit down will air on OWN Saturday March 28th at 8|7c.

We’re there!

Where Is The “Harlem” In Maya Angelou’s “Harlem Hopscotch” Music Video?

December 29th, 2014 - By Charing Ball
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So I finally watched OWN’s premiere of Dr. Maya Angelou new music video for “Harlem Hopscotch” and it got me seriously wondering to Sal, how come you ain’t got no brothers up on the wall here?”

If you haven’t seen the video, you can check it out above. In fact, I implore you to watch it first, before continuing this essay. If the name of the song and lyrics sounds familiar, the song is really a re-conceptualized version of Dr. Angelou’s 1969 poem of the same name. According to BET.com, the song is the first single from Dr. Angelou’s posthumous 13-track album called Caged Bird Songs, which was released last month. The album, which was produced by both her estate and RoccStar and Shawn Rivera (formally of the group AZ Yet), features Dr. Angelou’s vocals and poems over pop and other contemporary beats.

Rolling Stone wrote a brief article about its release in October and included a free listen of album, if you’re interested. Apparently the album was a dear project of the late poet, writer, dancer and activist. And as quoted in the Rolling Stone article, Dr. Angelou said of the importance of the album: “It’s woven into the tapestry of our lives, and we’re being serious and giving and kind about it. So obviously, it’s going somewhere. And we have to release it to go there.”

According to the BET.com article, the video, which was directed by Emmy Award-winning duo Tabitha and Napoleon Dumo and premiered on Oprah.com the Tuesday before Christmas, is said to use “dance to interpret Dr. Angelou’s inspirational poem about persevering through life’s challenges.” But in spite of its aim, it’s actually hard to see how video actually corresponds with the poem itself. For one, while it is true that some parts of the video were filmed in Harlem, New York, particularly the beginning; the rest of the video takes places in other locations far outside of the track’s namesake, like Hollywood and Los Angeles.

In fact, we would be hard pressed to see any bit of “Harlem” in this video. I mean, it is there, but sparsely and it looks a lot like the newly gentrified Harlem with the high rents and higher incomes than the one Dr. Angelou wanted us to know about in 1969. In fact, the main focus of the video is a bunch of smiling faced, happy feet celebrities, including Alfonso Ribeiro, Zendaya and one of the dance crews from So You Think You Can Dance and America’s Best Dance Crew, who dance along side of chorus line of mostly smiling White faces in the streets of Hollywood.

Now granted, I can appreciate the fact that lots of people of various colors and ethnicities also appreciated Dr. Angelou’s work. And I can also understand that the Phenomenal Woman belongs to us all. But that’s the thing: there is a difference between appreciation and straight up white-washing over the woman’s work in order to not offend some folks’ sensibilities. White folks’ sensibilities. And for that reason, I kind of have a huge problem with this music video.

For more clarity, let’s look at the poems stanzas:

One foot down, then hop! It’s hot.

Good things for the ones that’s got.

Another jump, now to the left.

Everybody for hisself.

In the air, now both feet down.

Since you black, don’t stick around.

Food is gone, the rent is due,

Curse and cry and then jump two.

All the people out of work,

Hold for three, then twist and jerk.

Cross the line, they count you out.

That’s what hopping’s all about.

Both feet flat, the game is done.

They think I lost, I think I won.

Without previous knowledge of the “Harlem Hopscotch” poem, it would be easy to conclude all sort of whimsical irrelevancy to the current “Harlem Hopscotch” song. The danceable beat and upbeat tempo of the song does help sell the theme. And in fact, the music video does a good job of playing up the whimsy angle of a game of hopscotch without any mention of the poem-now-song’s deeper meaning. To be even clearer: the poem/song is actually about poverty – Black poverty to be more exact.

A good and simple analysis of the poem comes courtesy of this blog post, which writes in part:

Harlem Hopscotch” adds a whole different meaning behind the actual game of hopscotch, being that fact that this game is being played in a community full of poverty. Usually when one plays a game, in this case hopscotch, it can almost always be associated with fun. However, in this scenario the game is to teach the children a lesson of the rough times in life, letting them know not to expect good things. Comparing poverty and struggle to a game of hopscotch emphasizes the real meaning of poverty in the sense that a game of hopscotch is looked at with complete innocence, according to Sparknotes.com. Racism is tied into the poem because of the fact that the game the children are playing takes place in an extremely poor black community, Harlem. “Since you black, don’t stick around”, line 6 from the poem, exemplifies racism because the whole point of the game is to move forward, and this line commands the question of who should move or not. There are many different ways to interpret the theme, and many different ways to state what the theme is. The overall theme that is clearly expressed is childhood poverty, struggle, wealth, work and leisure in the African American culture.”

All of which is not featured in the video.

And I get it: poverty is depressing. I mean, who really wants to watch a video of some sad-face poverty stricken Black kids, playing chalk hopscotch in the age of Playstations and iPads? Nobody. I don’t even believe Dr. Angelou intended that with the poem when it was drafted in 1969 – at likely the height of poverty in Harlem. But when the alternative is to create visuals of a multi-racial bunch of celebrities as well as random White people dancing in streets, which are not Harlem, we kind of gloss over what Dr. Angelou really wanted us to pay attention to in the poem.

And intentions matter. No one convinced us of that more than Dr. Angelou herself, who a few years before her passing, publicly denounced the Dr. Martin King Jr. Memorial for how the statue’s inscription misrepresented the civil rights leader’s words for the purpose of brevity and space. In many respects the washing over the poem and now song’s theme is guilty of that same misrepresentation.

Unlike what the description for the video would have you believe, this was not an inspirational poem “about persevering through life’s challenges,” but rather this was an inspirational poem about Black people preserving through poverty and racism. And as good stewards of Dr. Angelou’s legacy, intention as well as the issue of Black poverty and racism in general, we should not allow those themes to be written out of the narrative.

Evening Eye Candy: “The Haves And The Have Nots” Hunk, Tyler Lepley

December 12th, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Ladies, if you don’t already know him, meet “The Haves and the Have Nots” actor, Tyler Lepley. He plays Benny Young on the hit OWN show, and before he was a hit on-screen and with the ladies, the Philly-born cutie moved to Los Angeles and paid the bills by doing personal training. After auditioning for and nabbing a role in an independent feature, his first film role, Lepley caught the acting bug. He took some classes and eventually was cast in small roles in movies like Baggage Claim, and is now doing big things on Tyler Perry’s hit show, “The Haves and the Have Nots” alongside Tika Sumpter (he plays her half-brother). He’s a talented actor on the rise, and did we mention that he’s easy on the eyes? Check out this week’s evening eye candy and we think you’ll agree with us! 

“I Never Really Got A Chance To Tell My Side” Trans Woman Riding With Teddy Pendergrass Speaks Out

October 23rd, 2014 - By Veronica Wells
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Trans Woman Riding With Teddy Pendergrass Speaks Out

Source: OWN

Even today, there are a lot of theories surrounding Teddy Pendergrass’ car accident. All we really know was that the singer was riding with a transgender woman and was subsequently paralyzed from the accident.

Sadly, folks got very hung up on questioning Teddy’s sexuality and no one really took the time to find out what happened with these two.

So it’s very interesting that the people at OWN, tracked down Tenika Watson, the woman who was riding with Pendergrass the day his life changed forever, told OWN’s cameras, “I never really got a chance to tell my side of things and it was important to me. Very important to me.”

How they met

I met Teddy in the seventies. I was coming down the street where I lived at. It was close to the studio where he recorded. He called me over to his car and it was a Rolls Royce. I thought he was a pimp because I wasn’t really used to people really having Rolls Royces. So that was the first time and I ran from him. 

Watson, a former prostitute, told OWN that she was working as a nightclub entertainer and model when she saw Teddy again at a popular club in Philadelphia.

I went over and spoke to him and said hi. And I said I just wanted to speak to you. He said ‘Ok.’ And I said ‘I’m leaving because I have to get up early tomorrow.’ And he said ‘I’m getting ready to leave too. Would you like a ride home.’ So I said sure. So we proceeded to go to his car and drove away and that’s when the accident happened. 

The accident and the aftermath 

First the car started speeding up really fast. And I was wondering is he driving fast. But he wasn’t. It was out of control. And I noticed he was struggling with the wheel and all of a sudden I heard this great big bang. Next thing I know the press was there and I got into the ambulance with him and I helped him as much as I could. 

I had contusions from the impact and I had a chipped tooth, which is nothing compared to him. 

I didn’t find out Teddy was paralyzed until it got in the paper. I tried to reach out to him right after the accident. I went to the hospital where he was and there was a woman there. And she said, ‘You’re not going to see him before his son does.’ And she caused this big scene and I just left. 

Interesting.

The story, as I’ve heard it, always made it seem like Pendergrass and this woman were in a full fledged relationship. But in reality, they were just meeting.

What do you make of Watson’s story? Is it different from the way you’ve heard it? You can watch the full clip in the video below.