Rihanna's Diane Sawyer interview, part 1: Pain, shame, hard lessons
The first part of Rihanna’s vaunted interview with ABC’s Diane Sawyer just aired on Good Morning America. It was only a five-minute clip — a teaser for the real interview that’s coming tomorrow night on 20/20 — but already the singer has said more than she did in the nine months following ex Chris Brown’s violent attack on her.
GMA cherrypicked some gripping excerpts for this interview trailer. The part that everyone will be talking about came when Rihanna acknowledged getting back together with Brown in the weeks after he assaulted her. “It’s pretty natural for that to be the first reaction,” she told Sawyer. “The moment the physical wounds go away, you want the memories to go away.” Love, she said, had blinded her at the time. Given how many victims of domestic violence do go back to their abusers, it’s important for the public to hear an explanation of that toxic thought process.
Rihanna told Sawyer that she eventually ended things with Brown after thinking about the example she was setting for fans in abusive relationships of their own. “When I realized that my selfish decision for love could result in some young girl getting killed, I could not be easy with that.” She said she became ashamed that she had ever been with someone who was capable of what Brown did to her: “I fell in love with that person. That’s embarassing.”
Intense stuff. In this clip, at least, Rihanna made an honest, powerful advocate for victims of domestic violence — tearing up at times, but determined to get her message out. Like I said yesterday, it’s not this 21-year-old musician’s responsibility to take up that role, but so far she’s doing an impressive job talking about issues that are all too often ignored or kept quiet for the very reasons she mentioned.
What did you think of Rihanna’s first GMA segment? Will you be watching again tomorrow?
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