The Big Picture
- Tamar Braxton’s troubled past with reality TV includes tensions with WeTV, pay inequity, and a strain on her mental health.
- Reality TV pressures and a counseling session on Braxton Family Values caused deep issues for Tamar and impacted her mental health.
- Tamar is now producing her own YouTube series, Days With Tay, offering a sneak peek into her life, but viewers should be both excited and skeptical.
Tamar Braxton recently announced via social media that she is ready to get back into the reality TV world. This time, however, she is the one in charge, as she is producing her own YouTube series, Days With Tay. Will this be a triumphant return, or will it fall short? It all depends. While she’s reality gold, her presence in the genre has been both a blessing and a curse. Despite her talent, she’s been described, and often showcased, as bratty, combative, difficult to work with, problematic, and more. She says she’s received a bad edit and previously vowed she’d never do reality television again. But after a few reality competition shows and therapy, the youngest Braxton sibling says she’s prepared for another shot at it.
Tamar Braxton’s Troubled Past With Reality TV
Tamar Braxton rose to stardom on WeTV’s Braxton Family Values. The series followed the lives and careers of the five Braxton sisters alongside their partners and other family members. The series was a hit, primarily due to Tamar’s outrageous personality, tantrums, and talent. Her catchphrases became a standard for everyone during the years the show aired. She was even given two spin-offs, Tamar and Vince with her ex-husband, and Tamar Braxton: Get Ya Life! But the relationship with WeTV soon soured as the series came to an end. So what happened exactly?
Tensions were building between the Braxtons and WeTV during the 6th season. They went on strike during filming due to pay inequity. According to Towanda Braxton, in an interview with her boyfriend Sean Hall,
“The cameramen were making more than us. Let’s just say there’s a week of filming, a camera person out of the seven days works six. Every single day that camera person is getting paid $1,200 a day. Add that up, especially if we are out of the country, or if I am not local, then that’s per diem. But then even in between that per diem, they get fed. And then their lodging and all of that stuff is taken care of. Seven days can just make up for one episode and they are getting paid per day and we are getting paid per episode.”
The strike created a rift between the Braxtons and WeTV executives, and the series that was supposed to be nine seasons was cut down to seven. During that time, Tamar was filming her new series Get Ya Life!, and even warned the WeTV executives that they were driving her to the brink of suicide. Her cries for help went unheard by the network.
Tamar Braxton’s Struggles With Mental Health Impacted More By Reality TV Pressures
This includes episode 16, in which the family gets counseling from Iyanla Vanzant. Vanzant, who is not a licensed mental health professional, but a life coach, pressured Tamar to reveal details of her childhood sexual abuse, something a licensed mental health professional would never do. Needless to say this created incredible issues for Tamar, who stormed out of the session after being forced to share her deepest secrets. She responded to the incident saying,
“Since someone there decided that they would ask me about something so private, so embarrassing, so secretive in front of EVERYONE that was there, I felt like my life was flashing before my eyes and IMMEDIATELY started to cry. Not because someone decided to allow someone else to tell MY SECRET, not because I was asked if it were True in front of a hundred strangers, but because once again my right to choose was taken from me all over again.”
Tamar’s mental health issues prevailed to the point where she attempted suicide in 2020. She was discovered by her then boyfriend, David Adefoso. In a social media post Tamar shared more insight into her state of mind during that time.
“Over the past 11 years there were promises made to protect and portray my story, with the authenticity and honesty I gave. I was betrayed, taken advantage of, overworked, and underpaid. I wrote a letter over 2 months ago asking to be freed from what I believed was excessive and unfair. I explained in personal detail the demise I was experiencing. My cry for help went totally ignored. However the demands persisted.”
She also shared with Tamron Hall during an interview that she was “disgusted” by WeTV’s use of her suicide attempt to gain ratings. She continued to blast the network, while also informing fans that she had no intentions of ever returning to reality TV.
Tamar Is Taking Matters Into Her Own Hands
Tamar, of course, did return to reality TV with a turn on VH1’s Surreal Life. She was then featured on Peacock’s Queens Court, where she met her current fiancé, JR Robinson. Now, after an instagram post made earlier today, Tamar has let her “Tamartians” know that she is ready to let people back into her life. This time, however, it’s a show that she is producing herself on YouTube. In the post she shares,
“I have EXCITING news!!!! I haven’t fully wrapped my head around the idea of returning to reality tv….. so, just like anything else when you are working on your mental health, I have to take things slow. I’ve decided to invite you in my world, MY WAY and while this isn’t a reality show, this is just a sneak peak into what my days are like.. sooo, I’m introducing you all to #dayswithtay I hope you enjoy this small sneak peak of the first episode that will air on my TamarBraxton/ YouTube TONIGHT”
Tamar’s got her own show on her own terms. Right now, her YouTube channel is primarily comprised of cooking videos and other cute tidbits. The clip shared alongside the instagram post shows mother Evelyn Braxton spreading a little gospel while Tamar bounces around in the back in a simulated Holy Ghost fervor. The clip is silly and fun and certainly makes one wonder, is this what we have to look forward to in her new series? Now that Tamar is in charge of her own story, what will be shown? Can a person really share their personal life in a reality TV format without an objective eye to hone the narrative?
One thing can be certain; it will be entertaining. After all, this is Tamar Braxton! With that in mind, we’re getting our life, and choosing to be both excited and skeptical.
According to Tamar, Days With Tay’s first episode debuted on August 24th.