Tyler Perry, a world-renowned producer, director, actor, screenwriter, philanthropist, and author, among other things, is now showing the world what forgiveness looks like.
As you may recall, the famed actor’s childhood was littered with abuse. In fact, in a 2009 article, he revealed graphic details about the sexual, physical and emotional abuse he suffered at the hands of those closest to him.
“You … jacka–! You got book sense but you ain’t got no … common sense,” he recalled his father, Emmitt Perry Sr., saying. “I heard this every day of my childhood,” Perry once said. But it didn’t stop there. One night, when his mother was gone, Perry claimed that his drunken father “got the vacuum cleaner extension cord and trapped me in a room and beat me until the skin was coming off my back.” Meanwhile, his grandmother who described him as a weakly child tried to cleanse him by bathing him in ammonia.
According to Perry, the abuse occurred elsewhere as well — in a close friend’s home when he was just 10 years old. “I was at the front door trying to get out when she came in and laid on the sofa and asked me if I wanted the key. I told her I had to go home as it was getting dark. She put the key inside of herself and told me to come get it, pulling me on top of her,” Perry wrote on his site.
The violence in the home caused Perry’s mother to pack up and with him and his sisters in tow, move from Louisiana to California. Her husband reported the car stolen, resulting in their arrest and jail time. Perry said that after his father bailed them out, Perry Sr. beat his mother all the way home.
In spite of it all, Perry, who turned to God to make it through, revealed he still cares for Perry Sr.
“As terrible as he was, and as horrible as he was, he never once left us. We were never hungry. And every time he’d go to work, all week, he’d bring all the money home,” Perry explained on “Oprah’s Master Class.”
“From a child, I had always known that this man despised me,” Perry recalled. “I could not figure it out for the longest [time]. I could not figure out why he hated me so. Every action was about his hatred or his disdain for me.”
While he later discovered that Perry Sr. wasn’t his biological father, he felt a responsibility to provide for the man in the same way Perry Sr. had done for him. “I’m giving him what he gave to me,” Perry explained. “I had shelter; I had food. He has shelter, pretty nice shelter, and any food that he wants to eat.”
However, his helping hand only extends so far. “What I missed from him, being in a relationship, is also what he’s missing from me now. So he doesn’t have everything. He has what’s easy.”
What are your thoughts on Perry’s total act of forgiveness? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.