Yandy Smith On Thanking Chrissy For Making Jim Fire Her, And Why She Feels Sorry For Kimbella: “You Just Look Foolish”

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2019 Finding Ashley Stewart Finale Event

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Speaking of if there are mended fences that could happen, do you think you could work things out with Kimbella down the line?

I’m over it. She’s another one. I’m just over it. There are friends that I think are your friends forever, and then I think there are friends who are in your life for a season. I felt like with her, I was there for a very specific reason. When we first got cool, she was new to New York and Juelz [Santana] was like, “I really need her to understand the law of the land.” I’m like, I got you. Then I was able to get her on the show. I was the only person she knew on the show so naturally we would be cool from that. And then we built what I thought to be a very genuine friendship. But when I decided to change the role in our friendship, where I didn’t want to be the go between her and Juelz, and I didn’t want to be the person she needed to vent to and he needed to vent to because I was working with Juelz — it’s hard to work with him on a professional level, but also deal with being the relationship advocate and helping them get back together. I’m like, I want no parts of that anymore. We were all friends, but it was like, keep me out of the relationship stuff. But I kept getting thrown into that. When I finally decided, you know what? I’m going to step away, I’m going to take a break and just work for him and take a break from this side of our friendship, she didn’t like it.

So if you look at the end of last season, she said, “I just missed our friendship.” I’m like, you threw so much dirt on my name, acting as if I did something to you! By the end of the season it was very, “You didn’t, but you left me when I needed you.” I didn’t leave you, I just didn’t want to be that friend in that capacity. For me it was abusive. It was constant in the middle, thrown in the fire with both raging bulls. I was like, I can not do this. It was very toxic, a toxic space to be in. So this season came, it was on the heels of her talking about my mothering. Even that, at the reunion show, I got out my frustrations and how I felt, this season I was like, okay, I’m going to try and put that behind me because I don’t really think she meant it. Now looking back, she could not have possibly been talking about my mothering. I think she saw an opportunity to make great headlines, she saw an opportunity to say something that was going to be a great soundbite for the show, and she didn’t think how that would effect me and how that would effect my daughter, so I gave her a pass. But you’re coming on this season doing the same thing! You think it would be a better look to act like you’re friends with Chrissy for the show but then call me when cameras are not running to say, “You know I’m just doing this for TV.” Or, “You know I’m just doing this for the show because it’s a good look.” It’s crazy because there’s a scene where she actually admits, “I called you and I told you I’m not really her friend like that.” But I’m like, but what the audience sees is you dogging me every time you get with this girl. Don’t play TV for me. Don’t play like I’m just going to do this for TV or because it makes a good story, but behind the scenes, me and you are right. I’m walking into these things and I don’t see what you say to her. I don’t know what you’re doing. So when I walk into a scene and I’m like, okay, we’re good. I moved past the mother comment and you say, “No, we’re not friends” and you’re defending this lady in a scene when just last night on the phone you was like, whatever whatever, I’m confused now. So we have TV time and we have off-camera? I can’t do that with you no more. That’s why I’m like, I’m good.

So the energy I give her now is, I’m good. So because now she’s not getting the “Hey, girl, what’s up?” You getting the, “l’m here to work, let’s do this thing and go home,” now she acts like she has a real problem. But again, what’s your problem? “Oh, you fake!” Was I fake at your wedding when you asked me to be one of your three bridesmaids? Was I fake all this time when you had your children spending the night at my house? For TV it sounds nice to say that, to be the nemesis or the anti, but it’s not cute because when it all falls down and all is said and done, you’re going to wish you had a real friend when you have none. So you can parade this friendship, or she’s very quick to say, “Chrissy is not my friend,” but I defend my friends. I don’t defend people I don’t like. I don’t discuss my real friends with people I don’t like. I don’t link up, want to do business with people I don’t like. So even if you’re acting like you’re friends, it’s very contradictory to what you say. So it’s unfortunate because I’ve loved her for a very long time, but now it’s just clear to me that this friendship was all just based on what I could do for her. So when that need ran out, it was like, okay, I’m going to jump to the next bandwagon. This person doesn’t have friends like that on the show so let me be her friend so I can shoot with her. I’m just like, okay, I see your character. And the thing is, it’s coming across. I see the comments. Everybody is very clear like, oh if you could jump ship on your real friend and go to this person who stomped you out, you really don’t have no loyalty to nothing and nobody. You just look foolish and I’m sad for her because I don’t want her to look foolish. You’ve got to make smarter decisions, even if you’re trying to be strategic with how you make your money. Be smart strategic.

Outside of the show, I know you’re doing community building and activism. Tell us what you have going on presently. 

So much. I literally just got back from Mississippi. We went down there to rally and protest against the inhumane treatment of the inmates at Parchman facility. It’s a precinct out there where they shut this building down, this unit, 30 and 32, it’s been shut down for 10 years. You could not live in these conditions so the board of health shut it down. They decided to open it up and house these inmates for what was supposed to be a short period of time, but it’s disgusting. There’s asbestos. The water that comes out is brown. They don’t have proper heating or refrigerating for the food. They don’t even wash off the trays. The inmates are complaining about trays having last week’s food mold on it and the food just piled up on top of it. There’s no running water for the toilets to flush. They haven’t had showers in over two weeks. There was something that went up actually today where an inmate said, “It’s the 13th, 14th day of 2020, we haven’t taken showers yet.” So yeah, these are things that happen all over the place. There are “Parchman” facilities all over. The only thing that helps to change these is really holding these people accountable. Holding these governors accountable, holding the public advocates accountable, these wardens accountable and the people who are put in the place to look over these inmates. We pay all these tax dollars for these different things and where is it going? There are so many different things that we fight for, but I’m on the heels of coming back from Mississippi. Women’s rights are also something that’s important to me, equal pay is very important to me, equal education is important to me. So these are just a couple of the things I go to Washington D.C. to lobby for. I speak to legislators. I’ve spent my own money to help with bills and all these different things. These things are important, and they’re important to me because they affect my children. They affect my family. They affect the women that Skylar is going to be, the man that Omere will grow into. They will affect the woman Inifinity will be and the choices Infinity will have to make. That’s why they’re important to me. And I feel like, if I was given this platform, I need to use this platform to tell the story of how these things should be changed.

And lastly, speaking of your platform, with all the work you do with such serious causes and having success in real estate to help build up communities, do you ever feel like being on Love and Hip Hop is a distraction to leave behind?

I think about this all the time. I’m faced with the dichotomy of being on a show that has been looked at as something that tears us down more so then builds us up. Then on the other side of my life is doing a lot of the mentoring, the activism where I’m all about building us up. I feel like that is kind of my unique voice on the show. I am human so there are times where I’m going to give you a piece of my mind. But there are also times where I’m able to use the show to expose what being a foster mother is like. Where I’m able to show what happens in these prisons and how we can fight to change these things and I can bring awareness to a lot of different things. But ultimately, I am a human being that is striving every day to be the best version of me, so are so many people on this show. We’re going to mess up. We’re going to make mistakes and yell and scream. I have tried my best not to curse. I have tried my best not to throw drinks and fight because I do feel like some people look at me as a role model. But again, like I tell my children, I am striving every day to be the best version of me. I have to tell my children, even with this season, you have to stick up for yourself. Don’t ever think that mommy’s a punk. Don’t ever think that mommy doesn’t stick up for herself. More so I tell this to my teenage daughter because her friends talk about it and she sees it on Twitter. I choose to be in this position and I choose to be humble because that is the role that is best for me. But I am no means a punk. I’m by no means a pushover. I’m by no means someone that people can just walk all over. So I’m like, you stand up for yourself. You see something that’s wrong, speak on it. Somebody hits you, you hit them back. I don’t teach my children to be pushovers or to be taken advantage of. But I also teach them to be diplomatic. If someone keeps bothering you, someone’s bullying you, you tell the teacher first but you don’t let nobody touch you. Again, I’m doing the best I can. I’m learning every day how to be a better me. I’m learning every day how to be a better mother, and it’s therapeutic to watch myself on this show and maintain a level head with a lot of the crazy stuff that happens.

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