On Tuesday’s episode of Christina Milian Turned Up, things got super real when Christina discussed her past in an abusive relationship.
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This season of Christina Milian Turned Up has certainly contained some emotional moments. Danielle and Richard are coping (and not coping) with a difficult pregnancy, Christina ended a relationship and had a heart to heart with her dad, Danielle and Lizzy had a face-off, and there was that ridiculous outburst by Sandra, Ceraadi’s momager, that caused a screaming fight in the studio. On Tuesday’s episode, though, things reached a pinnacle when Christina opened up about being in an abusive relationship (which included threatening the lives of her family members) while talking about a new project she’s involved with — Stop Attack, an app that helps people in abusive relationships record the violence while it’s happening. While Christina discussed the terrifying details of her abuse, fans rallied around her, providing nothing but love and support.
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During the episode, Christina herself tweeted that in telling her story, she hoped to help folks in abusive relationships find the courage to leave. Viewers, in addition to applauding her courage, came forward with their own stories of enduring violence.
Watching Christina talk about her experiences as a survivor was powerful and an important thing to have televised. For all the falsified drama of reality TV, it was great to see something absolutely real. Christina openly discussed the cycle of violence that occurred in her relationship — the isolation, the threats, the gas-lighting and manipulation — in order to help others feel less alone in their experiences of physical and emotional abuse.
Much of Christina’s image in the media has been constructed based on her romantic relationships, which she has been talking about this season, but the entirety of CMTU is actually a huge departure from your run-of-the-mill reality show, and Tuesday’s episode was more evidence of that. Christina is invested in using her past, present and future in service of other women, whether it’s talking about her abusive relationship to advance the Stop Attack app, mentoring young women musicians or showing viewers the intimacy and complexity of her relationship with her sisters and mother. It’s these, among other reasons, that fans love the show and, in particular, Christina’s vulnerability and willingness to come forward and share such hard truths. We know from watching other women — famous or not — talk about abuse that it’s not an easy thing to do and there is more often than not backlash. It’s good to see Christina being openly supported by the fans she continues to inspire.
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