It is hard not to sympathize with Kandi Burruss’ split loyalties during last Sunday’s episode of the Real Housewives of Atlanta.
First there is her fiance, a poor gentile soul named Todd, who is sick and tired of being painted as a villain by Kandi’s mother Joyce. Fiance Todd puts pressure on Kandi to intervene and basically check her mother to which Kandi is reluctant to do because, after all, it is mom…However, being in love and all, Kandi agrees to arrange a meeting by way of dinner alone for the three, hoping that a face-to-face talk about what plagues them both (and by both, I mean Mama Joyce) would help to chill things the hell out. It was certainly the mature, more amicable thing for Kandi to do. However Mama Joyce wasn’t here for compromise – or pasta.
Keeping it all the way live, Mama Joyce told them both that Todd was nothing but a low-down opportunistic thrifty piss-poor provider, who should not be trusted around her money nor her best friend and Kandi was stupid for bringing him into the house without a prenup. Looking Todd square in his eyeballs, Mama Joyce fearlessly told Todd that the engagement ring Kandi was rocking, was complete garbage and Kandi, “she stepped herself down for you.” That’s when she really channelled her inner Buggin’ Out and asked why ain’t there no pictures of the brothers and sisters on the wall, Sal…
Poor gentile soul Todd does his best to muster up his adult assertive voice to tell Mama Joyce that not only does he provide emotionally for Riley, his soon-to-be- step daughter with love, and Kandi’s needs but he also contributes financially to the comfortable lifestyle he shares with Kandi. Although Todd said he was uncertain about signing a prenup, he also told Mama Joyce that the opulence lifestyle, which likely Kandi’s dollars are mostly fronting, that “this all doesn’t impress me.” Now unless he is talking about the god-awful décor, which is reminiscent of the set furniture in every direct-to-DVD Nollywood film produced over the last several years, then sure. But nobody believed that Todd. And his feeble attempt to fake ambivalence became the equivalent of popping a bear with a stick, with Mama Joyce asserting:
“Don’t let me catch you. Let me tell ya’ something, ain’t no river high enough, ain’t no ocean deep enough; ain’t no desert hot enough to keep me off your ass baby…”
I think I have found my new email signature.
In all pseudo-seriousiness, I really do feel bad for Kandi in this situation, who normally has this great relationship with her mother and very much respects both her eternal authority and her opinions. After all Mama Joyce was on point with her previous disapproval of Kandi’s other fiance, which we all know ended tragically. And she is definitely right about the prenup. Just like STIs, divorce is a very real and threatening possibility. And it’s just not wise for a person of that tax bracket to not take the necessary financial precautions in a relationship. Plus it is mom, who else has both experience and your best interest at heart than mom dukes? Not to mention, if you can take it from a dude with a porn mustache and in a candy colored suit with 52 buttons on the inside sleeve alone, why not listen to Mom? But there are times when what can be good advice just crosses the line into interference. And I honestly believe that in spite of her good intentions, Mama Joyce had crossed that line many unsolicited advisements ago.
It’s obvious that in addition to her own daughter’s own happiness, Mama Joyce is also motivated by her own self-preservation, particularly how she keeps talking about “our money” and the lifestyle that “we are accustomed to” on the show. There were times during the family sit-down scenes where it was hard to discern, which of the two motivations was taking precedence. Likewise, there was lots of fear expressed in her words including a fear of losing her daughter. That was illustrated by the rant about the lack of pictures she saw of the Burruss side of the family around the house. It could be very well possible that what Mama Joyce is responding to the very real possibility that she might be losing the reins of control of her daughter to hands of another master.
And this is the reason why Burruss will ultimately have to channel her inner K-Solo and tell her mom to mind her business. Mama Joyce might be right about Todd; ( it is still early in the season so who knows?), however Mama Joyce should also have enough confidence in her parenting skills to know that she didn’t raise a fool. And as such Kandi is capable of being the master of her own destiny and that includes choosing and being accountable for her own mate. And to deny her the opportunity of her agenda and agency, is really kind of selfish? Besides even if she is right about Todd, trying to force them apart will do nothing more than to draw them together again. Something about magnets and science…
The best she could do is offer support – and maybe an “I told you so” when and if it is discovered that she was right all along. But what do I know? Should Kandi tell her mom to butt out or should she take heed of her warnings about Todd?