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Tamar Braxton has called out what she describes as the “systemic bondage” of reality television in her first post since being hospitalized following an attempt to take her own life.
Braxton was taken to hospital on July 16, after LAPD responded to an emergency call from her Ritz-Carlton Residences in downtown Los Angeles. In a lengthy Instagram post, Braxton says she is now “on an irreversible path to healing.”
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She also goes on to make a series of damning remarks about the reality TV industry, which she has been a prominent part of for the last decade as the star of the WE tv series “Braxton Family Values.” Earlier this week, WE tv announced its decision to delay its upcoming “Get Ya Life!” series which centers around Braxton, due to its “concern is for (Braxton’s) recovery and well-being.”
“Over the past 11 years there were promises made to protect and portray my story, with the authenticity and honesty I gave. I was betrayed, taken advantage of, overworked, and underpaid,” Braxton’s writes.
The Braxtons founding member also says she wrote a letter “asking to be freed” from her “excessive and unfair” work demands, however, she says those demands were ignored.
Later in the statement, Braxton highlights the need for there to be a union for reality TV personalities, given that they currently have “no formal representation that protects our labor, our rights, our voices.”
“They promise us opportunity but produce exploitation, which has only developed a poor portrayal of Black people in show business,” Braxton concludes.
Read Braxton’s Instagram post below:
First and foremost, Thank you. Thank you to each and every individual who has prayed for me, thought of me, sent me their love and has showered me with their support. In this present moment, it is my only responsibility to be real with myself and to be real with the ones who truly love me and care for my healing. I have without fail, shared with you my brightest days, and I know that sharing with you what has been my darkest will be the light for any man or woman who is feeling the same defeat I felt just only a week ago.
Every one of us has a desire, whether small or big, to make it out of where we come from to an ideal future place that includes, freedom to be who we choose, security for our children and families, and fortune to share with the ones we love. We believe these things can co-exist with just being happy. I believed that, that as a black woman, as an artist, an influence, a personality I could shape my world, and with whom I believed to be my partners, they could help me share my world.
Over the past 11 years there were promises made to protect and portray my story, with the authenticity and honesty I gave. I was betrayed, taken advantage of, overworked, and underpaid. I wrote a letter over 2 months ago asking to be freed from what I believed was excessive and unfair. I explained in personal detail the demise I was experiencing. My cry for help went totally ignored. However the demands persisted. It was my spirit, and my soul that was tainted the most. There are a few things I count on most to be, a good mother, a good daughter, a good partner, a good sister, and a good person. Who I was, begun to mean little to nothing, because it would only be how I was portrayed on television that would matter. It was witnessing the slow death of the woman I became, that discouraged my will to fight. I felt like I was no longer living, I was existing for the purpose of a corporations gain and ratings, and that killed me.
Mental illness is real. We have to normalize acknowledging it and stop associating it with shame and humiliation. The pain that I have experienced over the past 11 years has slowly ate away at my spirit and my mental. I will do everything in my power to aid those who from mental illness including those of us who’s mental was only a result from the toxic, systemic bondage that dwells in television. It was only God’s grace and his mercy on my attempt to end my pain and my life that I am here to utilize my voice.
If you or anyone you know is having thoughts of suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or go to SpeakingOfSuicide.com/resources.
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