Kimberly Wyatt hasn’t had a relationship with her parents since she confronted them about their racist views when she was a teenager.
The Pussycat Dolls star revealed during a virtual discussion for the Power of Women TV’s She Speaks series that she grew up in a “very racist household” in Missouri and finally plucked up the courage to confront her violent father about his racist views when she was 14.
“I don’t have a relationship with my parents because we are so fundamentally different,” she confessed. “I always knew in me that it wasn’t right and when it came to actually speaking up about it, I must have been about 14, 15 years old…. It meant going against cocked-back fists and being shoved up against walls and being told that if my friends called there would be a shotgun ready, and if I was hanging out with my friends, I’d have to hide if I saw a cop car coming because they’d go straight to tell my father. I was scared to bits.”
The 38-year-old explained that she grew up in a town that is still racist today and suggested her father used racism as a way to take his aggression out on the world.
Recalling their confrontation, she continued, “He couldn’t believe what was coming out of my mouth. I think he felt like I was a traitor of what he felt should be normality… My thing was there’s bad people of all different races, it isn’t just Black people, and I would say that to him with such tenacity and as it would become aggression, you know, I would put my chin out there and be ready. Like, if you need to hit me over this…”
The dancer admitted not having a relationship with her parents has been “heart-wrenching”, lonely, and “almost soul-destroying” but she has reached a place of forgiveness as she doesn’t “want to carry that baggage”.
She confessed that although racism has affected her life in a major way, she doesn’t feel “worthy of the conversation” about the ongoing Black Lives Matter movement because of her white privilege, and she hopes the death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers will “wake everybody up into making something happen”.
The conversation is available to watch now on the POW TV YouTube channel.