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Melody Holt Headshot

Source: Blair Devereaux / Blair Devereaux

You don’t have to be an avid “Love and Marriage: Huntsville” fan to know that Melody and Martell Holt have had a bit of a rocky marriage for the past few years. The couple has been honest about Martell’s infidelity and some time ago, we learned that he’d fathered a child outside of his marriage. Before Melody learned about this update, she’d already filed for divorce from Martell. And this season we watch the blow out from her decision to leave. After this season’s premiere of “Love and Marriage: Huntsville” we spoke to Melody Holt about navigating a divorce on television, waiting for God to tell her to go and what she would say to other women in her shoes. See what she had to say below. 

MadameNoire: How do you feel about everything being on television? Do you feel like this is just a part of your story or do you wish this wasn’t happening on tv?

Melody Holt: Oh I absolutely wish it wasn’t happening on tv. If anyone had asked me, when we pitched this show, would I have thought I would be going through a divorce, my answer would be no. And if they asked me if I would be going through a divorce on national television, it would be hell no! I had no thought, idea, or preconceived notion that this is where I would be and that it would playing out on tv.

MN: Most people when they’re going through a divorce, they process it privately. But we’ve seen a lot of your relationship play out on reality tv and now the divorce is playing out on reality tv, what do you do when you need to process this privately?

Melody Holt: Well, for me, I take the time when to step away from the public eye, via social media. It’s really when I feel I need some quiet or alone time, without influence or the opinions of outside individuals. I do pull away and that’s when I’m off social media for days. And when I come back I see all these DMs, ‘Just checking on you, we haven’t heard from you in a while.’ People are used to seeing me post pretty regularly. When I’m gone, it’s because I’m smart enough to know when I need to pull away, process things privately or spend extra time or give extra love to my kids because this is something they’re having to process and go through as well.

MN: Some of your cast mates felt that the only reason you were getting a divorce was because other people were privy to the details of your marriage. Is that the case?

Melody: I think that was one of the most absurd things I ever heard. To be honest with you, there have been more people rooting for us than not. Ok, let’s make that clear. More people have been Team Holt, Team Martell and Melody for a while. More positive things have been in my DMs than anything. The reason I made the decision to leave and walk away—and this would have been if the spotlight had been on us or not—is because I do believe in grace and mercy. I do believe in giving people chances and opportunities. However, at some point there are no more chances. That breaking point occurs and a woman gets fed up–or man, let me put it that way. People get fed up.

For me, it was one of those situations to where I’ve given you enough chances. You continue to go against the marriage vows so I’m out. I want that to please be clear.

If I was listening to what the people want me to do on social media and in my DMs, I’d still be with Martell.

I have all kind of DMs, ‘I’ve been there too. Don’t give up. After so many years, my husband finally got it together. Don’t do this to your children.’ I get those kinds of things all the time.

So for any cast mates that say that, I tell them mind their own business, now.

And let me make this clear, I’ve seen or heard people say the only reason I left is because I found out the sidechick had a baby on the way. That’s not true. When I left April 4, I did not even know about the unexpected child. I didn’t find that out until May. I left because God said, Go.

MN: But why are they saying that like it’s not a good enough reason to leave?

Melody: Girrrl! Those are the Melody haters who want to make it seem that stuff coming out of my mouth ain’t all the way true. That’s all that that is.

MN: You actually created an apparel line from something you said in one of your Instagram Lives. “God said, go!’ God said, go is bigger than that moment. You said you felt like there were times when you wanted to leave the marriage prior to you filing for divorce but you felt like God had not revealed to you that it was the right time. Can you speak to that?

Melody: There were times prior to, when I actually wanted to walk away because again, there’s only so much that a person can take. I’m the person who will pray before my board meetings as a young entrepreneur. My point is, I’ve always been spiritually in tune. I was groomed and raised that way. I’m the person who, as best as possible because I’m not perfect either, is going to always yearn for and look for guidance from my creator in terms of how I should move. That’s in business. There are some deals I turn down because I don’t feel in my spirit that it’s right.

In the marriage, there were times when I personally was fed up, ready to walk away and go but I didn’t feel that spiritual release from God yet. I didn’t. And the moment I felt it was actually after I had my daughter Malani on December 19, 2019. I remember when they took us to our room and I got in the shower and while I was in there, I just burst out in tears. In that moment, I felt, ‘It is finished.’

And I knew from that moment on, if anything else transpired, if anything else happened that it was done and over. So that is why it was easy for me to walk away and it’s been easy for me to stay away because God said, go and nobody trumps what God says, period. That’s just how I am. I’m not about to be disobedient to what God says in my spirit to please anybody, nobody.

Even Martell says everyday that he still wants us to be together and be a family. But I’m going to follow what I know without a doubt.

You know, sometimes God will speak to us and we’re still unsure. Is this what God is saying or is it what I’m feeling? For me, I knew. That’s why when I left, I haven’t been back. We’re going on a year. I have no feeling whatsoever. I feel no connection, nothing. Seriously.

Now, do I have my moments when I think about memories we’ve had but that’s not even that often.

So the ‘God said, Go’ apparel line, I wasn’t expecting to be coming out with an apparel line to be honest with you; however, when I was doing the live that day, there were a lot of things that I had taken behind the scenes. My life was being made difficult because I did choose to walk away. There were a lot of things I didn’t put on blast. And on that particular day and in that moment, it was ‘God said, Go.’ So I went ahead and put it out there…some of it. What had happened that day, anyway. And the fans were here for it. ‘It’s the God said, Go for me.’

MN: Do you think Martell really wants full custody of your children?

Melody: No. First of all, the kids are a trigger for me, emotionally. If you pay attention to the first part of that episode, speaking to my brother, only time I cried was when I was speaking about my children. That’s the only time I really get emotional because they’re innocent in all of this. And this was filmed months ago. At this point I’ve learned not to let things be my trigger, however, at that time Martell knew they would be a trigger. So for him to say full custody—and this being my first time hearing that–with me knowing that there are times when I’ve kept them way longer than the two weeks I was supposed to have them. [All because Martell will say] ‘I just can’t come and get them right now.’

Do I think Martell wants or can even handle full custody? Absolutely not. I know that because when you have the kids and you have to call me, every other day thinking I’m supposed to help do this or help do that. No sir. You are not ready for a full anything.

Melody Holt Love and Marriage Huntsville

Source: OWN / OWN

MN: I notice that in the conversations Martell is having about your marriage, there is very little accountability on his part and he seems to find excuses. Is this something the divorce brought out of him or was this always present and it’s exacerbated now?

Melody: Martell is just being Martell. For him, instead of making the decision to do better and do what’s right for himself and his family, it’s more of mentally, ‘You know what, let me say all of these things so it seems like I had a good reason to cheat.’ Because here’s my thing, if I was not doing all these things you’re saying or if I was not a great wife to you, there’s no way you would be doing interviews saying, ‘But that’s my soulmate and maybe in two years we can get remarried.’ Why would you want to remarry someone who wasn’t even a good spouse to you? That doesn’t even make sense. If people pay attention and listen, then you can understand that some of the stuff Martell has been saying is BS. It was a deflection mechanism.

MN: What I did like is that his mother held him accountable? So many times we see the opposite.

Melody: Yeah. Oh, his mother. She’s amazing. The very first day I met her, I was in college. Martell and I were in college at the time. And I remember I had gone over there to meet her and she was like, ‘Oh that’s going to be my daughter. That’s my daughter. When I tell you she has loved me. She has two sons. She doesn’t have a daughter. So she has loved me like a daughter of her own since day 1. At the end of the day, she is a woman first so I was not surprised at all to see her hold Martell accountable and tell him the truth. She and Martell have a very close relationship. They’re very close.

MN: But right is right. And if I love you, I’m going to want you to be better.

Melody: Absolutely.

2019 Trumpet Awards

Source: Prince Williams / Getty

MN: What’s next for you Melody, as a woman, a businesswoman, a mother?

Melody: Girrrrlllll, we bout to go to the top, girl! I have several things I’m working on. I tell people I wake up and I smile every single day because I just genuinely am happy. I feel good. I have a lot of people in my life who are very positive, who speak blessings and positivity over my life every single day. And even when I’m having a moment, they’re like, ‘Girl, come on. We gotta close this deal. Now let’s go.’ I have those kind of people and I’m so thankful to God for that.

I just finished shooting a movie in Atlanta. So my acting career is moving in the way I wanted it to move. I have another pilot that I’m shooting with Megan Good’s aunt, it’s called “No Good Nora.”

In my music career: I’m in the studio, recording my first single. In the next two weeks I’m going to record my other song. I’m going to do an entire EP. Moving into that industry, away from reality tv to music Mel and actress Mel, I’ve got all of those things going on.

I’m an ambassador for the city of Birmingham and Covenant Healthshare.

I’m really just continuing to push the Melody S. Holt brand despite the obstacles and all the things. And that’s another reason I’ve been able to move forward and get over the divorce because I keep myself busy. I’m doing things that I actually love doing.

MN: Lastly Melody, what would you say to women who may be in a relationship like you were. Their partner has not changed their behavior and they’re debating whether or not to leave. What would you say to them?

Melody: First, I would say this. Pray and don’t move until God tells you to move. And until then, pray for the strength to still be that wife God has called you to be until He tells you to move. I look at my situation, I was still washing Martell’s clothes, cooking dinner, cooking breakfast doing all those things that a wife would do. And that’s another reason my blessings have been coming my way because I was faithful and obedient until the end.

Don’t be afraid to walk away. People in my DMs who are in my situation or have been, a lot of times women are fearful. They ask, ‘How am I going to survive? How am I going to take care of my kids?’ So for me, let me tell you what I did. I left Martell April 4, 2020. The only thing Martell has done for me is bought me a two-piece chicken snack from Popeyes, okay?

I’m just being honest.

What he said to me when I left him was, ‘I’m the nucleus.’ And I said, ‘Honey no, God is actually the nucleus.’ And every day when I woke up—because it can be fearful—I would say these words: God is my source. That was it. And then God started giving me ideas on ways to make money, do things and be creative. Everything has been working out well.

I started an academy. My first class was June 2020. I left [Martell] in April, opened enrollment in May, my first class was in June and since then I’ve created close to 190 entrepreneurs, with mostly African American women through my academy.

God is my source.

Don’t move until God tells you move.

Be obedient. Don’t let nobody tell you when to leave. People been telling me to leave but you don’t leave until you feel in your spirit that it’s time to go.

Love and Marriage: Huntsville airs on Saturdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on OWN. 

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