Archuleta A. Chisolm
Apology Not Accepted
A couple of few weeks ago, I was listening to the radio in my car when a new song by Ne-Yo came blasting through the speakers. The song was called Apology and is basically an open-letter to every woman he’s been with and hurt prior to his wife Crystal Renay.
The song made me cringe a little bit, because it just seemed disingenuous from the start. On the first verse, Ne-Yo gives us the why and explains his mental state, basically saying, “A lot of women had to deal with a boy that’s ‘spose to be a man.”
On the second verse, he chooses to address a few women specifically, keeping the names a secret of course. Finally, the third verse addresses his specific f**k boy behavior, such as standing up his dates, not calling and generally not being worth a damn.
His appearance on ‘The Real’ talk show seemed to sum it all up: “We can’t go back in time, I can’t fix what I did…these women had to get their hearts broken in order for me to become who I am today.” Really?
My mind immediately went to his ex-wife Monyetta Shaw and the story she tells of her relationship with Ne-Yo.
Prior to their second child being born in 2011, they agreed their family was complete. They also agreed, in solidarity, she would undergo a sterilization procedure and he a vasectomy.
Monyetta received her procedure immediately after their second son was born, and she trusted that Ne-Yo would follow through with his vasectomy. But two months prior to their wedding, he advised her that he didn’t want to be monogamous anymore. Ultimately, they split.
Now, Ne-Yo is not only married but has two children. However, if Monyetta falls in love with a man who wants children, there may be nothing she can do about her sterilization.
So, you don’t want to be monogamous but then went and found a different woman who you are ready to be monogamous with. Is this what he means about these women had to have their hearts broke – or be sterilized – in order for him to be better man?
Monyetta says that she regrets not taking control of her own body. You can’t blame someone for acting out of their reality. She thought that she would be with this man for life, and raise their family.
Somewhere along the way, women have been pushed into this narrative of the only way we can possibly prove our value and worth is to be broken down. As women we are taught to be caretakers, givers, and accommodating. We often sacrifice what we want, based on the needs of our partners. However, that doesn’t mean being an emotional and physical dumping ground that only satisfies the other person.
We make choices everyday whether or not to be happy, based on what’s in front of us. My prayer is that we as women learn a lesson from Monyetta Shaw; how to make decisions based not on what we think a man wants from us but what we want for ourselves.