T.I. & Tiny: Friends and Family Hustle premiered on Monday night, and boy do we have thoughts.
Real quick, just want to share that we love the new format. It’s nice to see the goings on in the lives of each famous friend and their family, as opposed to just watching T.I., Tiny and their clan take part in random activities to help fill out 45 minutes of TV (with 15 minutes of commercials).
But as far as the episode as a whole, we couldn’t get over the drama surrounding T.I. being caught on camera smacking the backside of a woman who’s not Tiny. Early on in the episode, when T.I. stops by her home to drop off the kids (they are still living separately at the time of filming the new season), he is confronted by Tiny about his behavior. According to what she said in her confessional about the much talked about video of the rapper feeling up on actress Asia’h Epperson, “I care about the cheating and the disrespect.”
In response to being put in the hot seat, T.I. blamed the person who filmed his behavior and put it online, not himself.
“I know that you are upset, but not with me,” he said. “You are upset with the people who keep calling you and bothering you.”
“No I’m upset with you,” she said. “They wouldn’t be calling me if it weren’t for you.”
In his confessional, the rapper brushed off any concern over her issue with the clip, because it’s clearly not something out of the ordinary for him.
“The video ain’t really the issue. The video being posted on social media is the issue,” he said. “If someone were to have sent her that video privately, she and I would have had one conversation about it, and it would have been over.”
He took things a step further when speaking to her about it in the house, telling Tiny he was tired of everyone being in their relationship, and the way he chooses to handle himself in it.
“Before it was all about us and we had our own world and whatever we did in our world was us and we were cool,” he said. “Their opinion didn’t matter, their voices didn’t matter. They had no say. Now all of a sudden everybody’s opinion makes it into the house. I hate it. I don’t care nothing about how they feel. I care about how you feel.”
Later on in the episode, he defended his behavior to his boys (including comedian Lil Duval) by saying, “I was not caught cheating. The point we speak of, I was caught flirting.”
In his mind, as long as he didn’t get caught engaging in a sexual relationship with anyone, he’s not guilty of anything other than some harmless teasing. And based on the way in which Tiny’s friends addressed their martial issues, they didn’t see it as being that big of a deal either. Instead, they encouraged her to look at the bigger picture.
During LeToya Luckett‘s gathering at her home, Tiny was applauded for her ability to show the world “how to stand by a man when it ain’t easy.”
A clearly exhausted Tiny, knowing what she went through to stand by him, said of their relationship, “We’re coming up on eight years, still trying to make it.”
But those around her continued to laud the marriage and applaud her for her perseverance. Pastor John Gray told her that her “resilience” has been a blessing to T.I., and Luckett emphatically stated that knowing not to tuck your tail in between your knees and run in a marriage is what it’s all about.
“That’s awesome because a lot of people don’t know how to stick with it, and that’s what marriage is,” she said.
That’s not necessarily true, though. That’s what their marriage is. But we think many people would agree that the foundation of a marriage is not about standing by and raising the kids of a man who repeatedly goes to prison and who also repeatedly behaves unfaithfully and disrespectfully.
People praise the relationship not realizing that one person has had to endure a lot more than the other just to make it work. And while buying Tiny luxury cars after embarrassing her publicly (which he did in this situation and in the past) might be nice, it’s as she shared with her girlfriends, not enough. She wants him to be an all-around good partner, but he wants to continue doing what they’ve been doing. And we all can tell that he feels it necessary for things to be this way and stay this way because Tiny likely allowed a lot of this behavior before to keep him happy (there have been a few stories about threesomes and the like). Now that she’s trying to reel him in and hoping for better, it feels like it may be too late. At least, that’s the impression we got from the man’s own words during the episode when speaking about their marriage.
“I can do this forever,” he said, “as long as I can be me forever.”
We weren’t the only ones rolling our eyes at his behavior. Check out what folks on Twitter had to say about it all.