|Ray J & mom Sonja Norwood|
By Mwabi Kaira
I’ve noticed a trend when it comes to “our” reality shows; mothers of grown black men stay in their business. First there was Mama Jones on Love and Hip Hop New York, who stayed in Jim Jones and Chrissy’s relationship in the first season back in 2011. She didn’t like not being her son’s number one priority after Chrissy came along, and it doesn’t seem that things have gotten any better since the three of them went on to appear on Marriage Boot Camp. Then there’s Scrappy’s Mama, Momma Dee, on Love and Hip Hop Atlanta, who proudly proclaims to be the Queen of Scrappy’s castle in the Atlanta franchise and doesn’t want anyone knocking her off her throne. Not to be outdone, we now have Sonja Norwood, mom to Ray J, and her sidekick Brandy on Love and Hip Hop Hollywood, all up in his business.
The bond between mothers and sons is very strong and special. Our natural inclination as mothers is to hold them close forever but we can’t. We have to let them go and change our parenting dynamic once they grow up. When I got divorced 8 years ago, I made a conscious decision to not make my sons my little husbands. They wanted to hang out with me when they saw me at home alone, but I pushed them out to live their lives. I didn’t want us to be so codependent on each other and not know what to do when girlfriends enter the picture.
Which brings us to Ray-J, a 37-year-old husband and new father, and Mama Sonja is still right there in the mix. Princess, Ray-J’s wife posts a meme to social media after Ray-J posted some questionable content to his social media disrespecting his pregnant wife. Mama Sonja lets herself in her son’s house and doesn’t admonish him for his poor behavior and disrespect to his wife. Instead, she wants her son to handle his wife so she can stop ruining the “family image” and brand. If that wasn’t enough, Sonja and Brandy both confront Princess at the couple’s gender reveal party.
Both women must have forgotten the super confidence that comes with being pregnant because Princess lets them have it. Sonja insists on a public apology from Princess and she tells her mother-in-law that she should be demanding that her son apologize to his wife. At one point, Sonja tells Princess to never forget that Ray-J is HER son proving that the reins aren’t going to be loosened anytime soon. The most disturbing part about watching the scene is Ray-J and his father doing very little to stop the ladies from going back and forth. The entire thing could have been over with just one word from either one of them.
Our jobs as mothers never end whether our sons are 27, 37, or 67. We have to understand that there is a difference between mothering young children and adult children. When our sons leave our homes, we have to trust that we’ve done our jobs and let them come to us when they need us. Being a part of all their decisions as adults and still steering the ship only cripples them. There is no reason to be in the middle of our children’s romantic relationships unless they’re in danger. What the Norwood’s are missing is that in this age of social media, authenticity is key. Being authentic automatically builds and protects the brand. Since the birth of Melody, Ray-J and Princess’s daughter, fans love them even more for sharing their new parenting journey. That’s authenticity at its best and their brand is thriving because of it. No one wants controlled perfection, that was left in the 90’s and 2000’s. Someone let Sonja know. Maybe then she’ll butt out.
Should Moms butt out of their son’s relationship business unless asked?