R&B singer Ashanti joined her younger sister, Kenashia Douglas, and their mother, Tina Douglas, for a “Red Table Talk” episode on domestic violence and its impact on their family. The Grammy Award-winning artist opened up about her role in the horrific domestic abuse her younger sister endured for years. Douglas’s ex-boyfriend last strike was punching her in the mouth, causing her to lose her front teeth.
The family shared the events that led up to Douglas finally leaving her abuser. Ashanti feared her sister would not be able to. “I went to the garage, and I got my bat. I pulled up in my truck. I had Vaseline, and I was ready and by myself. I had the adrenaline, you know?” the R&B singer shared.
Ashanti posted an image of her sister’s bruises to her Instagram page during National Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October to showcase her strength and resilience to make it out. Her mother shared with the hosts that she tried intervening, but Douglas wouldn’t allow it. “We didn’t know how to handle this situation. We did the best we could and said we are going to love you, and we are going to give you all that you need.”
With the help of her family and friends, Douglas was able to escape her abuser. She bravely shared her regrets at the table for letting the relationship come between her close-knit family. She said her ex-boyfriend was manipulative and a narcissist who convinced the family it was nothing more than minor disagreements. The sisters exchanged feelings about what it felt like growing up and how that contributed to Douglas’ longing for love in the wrong places.
According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, more than 40% of Black women have experienced intimate partner physical and sexual violence.