In a special episode of “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” the host addressed the alleged altercation between Chris Brown and Rihanna by talking about domestic violence with teens who have been in abusive relationships. She also spoke with Tyra Banks, who shared her experience of being in an emotionally abusive relationship.
“If you go back with a man who hits you, it’s because you don’t think you’re worthy of being with a man who won’t,” Winfrey said. “I’ve said before love doesn’t hurt, and if a man hits you once, he will hit you again.”
One of the teen girls who had been in an abusive relationship was Brittany, who is pregnant. The father, who abused her, is currently in jail. Banks said that like Brittany, she kept going back to her abuser. “He never hit me, but there were blows to my spirit,” she said. “Two weeks into the relationship, I felt he was strange. I was at the top of my game, but I didn’t feel good inside.”
Banks also talked about interviewing Rihanna and Brown and how they shared their experiences growing up in abusive homes. “Rihanna told me that her parents used to argue so intensely and she used to get these headaches, almost migraines … and it was almost living hell for her,” Banks said. “The moment her parents separated, the headaches went away.”
“When you grew up in an environment where there is abuse, it’s more acceptable to you,” Winfrey said. “It’s so sad that even when you grow up in an environment and you disdain that environment, you really cannot help yourself until someone helps you.”
When asked about the couple’s alleged reconciliation , some of the teens on Winfrey’s show criticized Rihanna for sending out the wrong message by getting back with him.
“I think we need to send them both love,” Winfrey said.