Before there was MTV’s 16 & Pregnant and Teen Mom, there was “Big Mama” rapper Roxanne Shanté to show younger generations what it was like to have a baby at a young age. The artist talked about her expereince being “a baby with a baby” on DJ Vlad’s Vlad TV.
After revealing that she was “already very maternal” from taking care of her siblings, she said that being in hip-hop made parenthood easier “because [she] didn’t have to worry about how he was gonna eat, how [she] was gonna support him, what [she] was gonna do.”
“It’s ironic that now they have shows like ‘Teen Mom,’ where they put it out there. Where when I did it, it was like ‘No.’ But unlike these teen moms, I showed a teen mom that took care of their child, worked everyday, tried to set the right example.”
“I kept him in Dapper Dan outfits. You talkin’ like $1000 a pop at that time. You know… $1500 a pop,” she continued. “I wish somebody would have whispered in my ear, like ‘He’s gonna have to go to college one day. Put that aside.’ But I guess no one didn’t wanna say that.”
“He became hip-hop’s baby,” the now 48-year-old mom continued. “And because my Juice Crew was so close to me, he had his uncles around constantly.”
Roxanne went on to say that she kept her son with her during performances and tours. Revealing that her son kept her away from a lot of things, she added, “He literally, I would say, saved my life.”
“And even though I have pictures of me and him in the club, 3, 4 o’clock in the morning, that was me taking him to work with me,” she continued. “And the fellas also made sure that everything was child friendly. Like, my studio sessions were done during the day. And if I had to go in the studio late at night, he’d sleep on a pile of coats.”
“He was a blessing. And it was not hard, at all,” she added, before Vlad brought up her troubles with domestic abuse.
Time to Go
The Queens native shared that dating someone who was not a celebrity made her understand why fellow female stars always tended to exclusively date other stars. “If they do not understand what it is you do, for some reason, they start to resent you for your popularity,” she said. “They start to resent you for all the ‘Roxanne Roxanne I wanna be yo man.'”
She went on to explain exactly how tough it got between her and her baby’s father, revealing that she had been hospitalized.
“Well, my ribs were broke,” the artist continued, talking about the “final straw” to make her leave the father of her child. “So, I didn’t think he was going to keep me around. You know, I felt that the violence had escalated to such a point that I wasn’t sure if I was going to be around, so it was best that I left.”
“It’s bad enough when the love is gone,” she continued. “But then when they don’t even like you… You know, and I’m 16, 17 years old. […] I didn’t go through all that for it to end here like this.”
Saying that she knew there was “no way” she went from “abused child, group home girl, battle rapper, Roxanne Shantae, becoming a whole Roxanne Roxanne” for it to end with her possibly dying at the hands of someone else, the rapper said she knew she had to leave. So, she split when her son about two years old.
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