The R&B singer opened up for the first time about the alleged abuse she suffered at the hands of the legendary rapper during their marriage.
Kelis filed the papers when she was seven months pregnant with Nas’s son, claiming irreconcilable differences. The couple officially terminated their marriage in 2010 “after an eternity of legal war,” TMZ wrote at the time. The 2010 blog post continued, “There are still a few more nasty battles to fight…like child custody and spousal support. Currently, Nas is ordered to fork over roughly 10k a month for child and spousal support—which he claims he can’t afford. So, the next round should be all sorts of fun.”
In the nine years since, the couples’ legal disputes have continued to make headlines. In 2017 they flared up once again, thanks to court docs obtained by TMZ in which Nas claimed he’s tried “for months” to get Kelis to allow him to spend more time with their 8-year-old son, Knight. “Nas claims Kelis has dictated when, where and for how long he’s able to spend time with his son,” TMZ continued. “And he’s had enough.”
Two months later, Kelis filed legal documents seeking to raise Nas’s child support from $8,000 a month, claiming that Knight had new needs, including school costs. Kelis additionally argued that Nas was in a far better place financially than he was when the original child support was agreed upon. In 2018, XXL reported that the rapper’s net worth “continues to skyrocket,” crediting the windfall to “a plethora of good investments ranging from Bitcoin to making $40 million by aligning with a doorbell company.”
Nas and Kelis appeared to put one chapter of their custody battle behind them in March 2018, reportedly agreeing to share joint legal and physical custody of Knight. Sadly, just one month later, Nas claimed that Kelis violated their agreement. According to XXL, “Nas says it was his weekend to have their 8-year-old child Knight, but Kelis claimed the child wanted to stay with her during Passover…Nas claims he once arrived at Kelis’ house to pick up Knight and the singer screamed at him, saying he couldn’t take the child. The rapper also says Kelis has refused to allow him to pick up Knight from school.”
Now, in a new interview with Hollywood Unlocked, Kelis is speaking out about Nas’s allegedly abusive behavior and years of infidelity like never before. She began the sit-down by emphasizing that she had never done a tell-all interview about her marriage and divorce— “I have never, ever said anything negative about this man….I have edited myself for nine years, and I woke up this morning and was like, not today.”
Kelis went on to describe the intense highs and lows of their marriage, which was “tumultuous and toxic.” While rumors have long held that Kelis left Nas because he cheated, she clarified that, “That broke the camel’s back, but that wasn’t it. I didn’t file for divorce because he’d cheated, he’d cheated for two years and I knew that. It was because on top of all the other stuff, then you’re going to cheat?”
When pressed to describe the lowest point of the relationship, Kelis said that “there was a lot of mental and physical abuse.” She was careful to clarify that she fought back, saying, “I have never painted myself as a saint. Did he hit me? Mhmm. Did I hit him back? Mhmm.” She cited alcohol as a major factor, saying that Nas “drank way too much” and would often black out. “I’m not afraid to throw a punch, but I wouldn’t have started it. I’ll participate in ending it, but I wouldn’t have started it.”
She recalled the day when the pictures of Rihanna’s bruised face went viral— “And the only way I can describe it was like Double Dutch, like, ‘Do I jump in? Do I say it?’ Cause I had bruises all over my body at that time.”
“Seeing her, the way she looked and then looking at myself, I was embarrassed. I was appalled. I don’t know that situation, but for me it was kind of like, you’re going to just let this go? You’re not going to say anything?” she continued. “He knew it, I knew it. He looked at me like, ‘Are you going to do it?’” She claimed that she chose not to speak up for multiple reasons, including a desire to maintain privacy and the fact that she didn’t want her career to be defined by the abuse.
“So much of me was out of character in that marriage, like taking that is not my character,” she concluded. “I didn’t say anything because I wanted things to work, and because I was delusional.”
Kelis went on to claim that while she’s never gone to the press, Nas is “obsessed” with his image. “That’s why people think he’s phenomenal and I’m some raging crazy bitch,” she laughed, “because he gives a damn and I don’t care.”
Asked to clarify on the recent child support and custody battles, Kelis didn’t hold back, calling Nas’s claims crazy and ridiculous. For context, she described returning to L.A. from New York with her three-month-old baby to find that their house was in foreclosure, because “I would always put the money down and then [Nas] would pay the mortgage.”
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SOURCE: The Daily Beast – Amy Zimmerman