I have not sobbed in such a manner before a television since September 11, 2001.
I was that affected by the “Iyanla: Fix My Life” interview with DMX.
When my daughter was a baby, we used to chant: “Y’ALL GONNA MAKE ME LOSE MY MIND/UP IN HERE, UP IN HERE!/ Y’ALL GONNA MAKE ME GO ALL OUT/UP IN HERE, UP IN HERE!”
I understand DMX. His story makes my heart heavy. And thee other night as I watched, I thought: He’s back where he started, and it’s been aggressive since Day One.
I know a lot of men like DMX. They’re just not famous rappers.
DMX is a drug addict, angry and trapped. An alcoholic. A black man in the spotlight with no tools. An adulterer. A father with no parenting skills. An ex-con with no rehabilitation.
I ache to my core for him. And I can’t stop crying about it, even as I write this article.
If we would have gone to the same high school, I would have liked him. He was rough, confident, powerful and people wanted to be around him.
As for Iyanla Vanzant, I got mad at her a few times for coming at him the way she did. He’s not her “beloved,” and it felt impure to address him like that.
I understand it though.
She’s “the professional.” Hes “outrageous and totally out of control.”
She had to put that into a place, set a tone, show the authority.
He was deaf to her – and I understand that too.
He felt attacked, disrespected and unheard. And I just wanted to jump in the television and tell him how worthy he is, how good a father I think he can be.
When he first embraced his son, and couldn’t let go, I saw the possibility in DMX; the human being screaming for some validation, understanding, forgiveness and compassion.
I just wanted someone to burst in the room and save him from himself!
And I think Iyanla wanted to do that when she showed him the wall of pictures of his past transgressions – but it felt like an indictment; like a wall at a police station showing pictures of America’s Most Wanted.
DMX did not need that further judgment. He sleeps, eats and wakes up with that judgment every day.
And so now there’s the back and forth.
First, the show airs. Then, DMX responds in protest of his portrayal. Then, despite his reaction, Iyanla responded with even more support. And that’s all good for ratings and drama, but I wish she had not responded.
Let him have the last word. He needed that. She doesn’t.
And what now?
Iyanla goes back to taping her show.
DMX’s son, Xavier, goes home a brave man who stood up to his abusive father.
And DMX continues on with more spotlight on his fragile life until there is no more.
- Mo Ivory, CBS Local