R. Kelly shares candid details of his 12-year marriage to Hollywood Exes star Andrea Kelly in his autobiography, Soulacoaster, The Diary of Me, out Thursday on SmileyBooks.
Andrea, who is the mother of Kelly's three children, is a cast member on the VH1 reality show that also stars former spouses of Eddie Murphy, Prince, Jose Canseco and Will Smith.
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In the Soulacoaster chapter "The Breakup," Kelly describes the day a frustrated Andrea took off her $50,000 wedding ring and threw it in a pond in their backyard.
The problems in Kelly and Andrea's marriage had been mounting. According to Kelly, he continued to struggle with infidelity, Andrea was unhappy walking away from her dance career to be a stay-at-home mother, and they were constantly fighting.
One day, Kelly said he confronted Andrea about her feelings for him and it backfired.
"The way you're acting around here," he wrote, "I don't think you love me anymore." He repeated the statement, but she did not respond. So he challenged her.
"If you really don't love me, I dare you to take off your wedding ring and throw it in the pond out back," he wrote.
Andrea replied that the proposal wasn't a good idea. "You might not like what your dare will make me do," she said.
"Drea took the dare," he wrote. "She marched out to the yard and threw the ring in the pond — 'plunk!' Man, I couldn't believe it. I offered $10,000 to anyone who could fish that ring out of the pond. No one could."
Their problems escalated. They began discussing divorce. When Kelly realized that the relationship was over, he went to the movies by himself to see The Notebook. Though he enjoyed the love story about a couple who grew old together and died in each other's arms, he got visibly emotional in the theater.
"As the film credits started to roll, I couldn't move," he wrote. "I burst into tears. People walking past me patted me on the back, trying to console me. The Notebook was beautiful, and I was crying because its hero and heroine had died together. But I was also crying because I remembered a Valentine's Day — when a helicopter dropped a rainfall of roses — that had come and gone. My marriage had died. And there was nothing I could do to bring it back."
Kelly met Andrea when she auditioned to be one of his background dancers. He described their meeting as love at first sight. Though his initial attraction was physical, he loved her confidence. He described her as a lioness who "calmed [his] inner storms."
In the book co-authored by David Ritz, who also has titles with Aretha Franklin, Marvin Gaye and Janet Jackson, Kelly discusses being molested by a teenage girl when he was a child, being illiterate, his elementary school teacher who recognized his musical talent, and his fallout with Jay-Z during the promotional run of their Best Of Both Worlds album and tour.
Kelly released this week his album, Write Me Back.