Remember a few weeks ago when rapper T.I. just casually let slip that he’d been taking his daughter Deyjah to the gynecologist every year to “check her hymen”?
In the with Nazanin Mandi and Nadia Moham on the podcast Ladies Like Us, T.I. was asked if he’s had the “sex talk” with his daughters.
“Not only have we had the conversation,” T.I. said. “We have yearly trips to the gynecologist to check her hymen…Yes, I go with her.”
Later, T.I. said the doctors informed him of the many ways a hymen can be broken other than through sexual penetration. “I say, ‘Look, Doc, she don’t ride no horses, she don’t ride no bike, she don’t play no sports. Just check the hymen, please, and give me back my results expeditiously.”
As expected, T.I.’s comments did not go down well with his daughter, or the rest of the Internet and he quickly copped major backlash online.
As she often does in the midst of celebrity PR nightmare, Jada Pinkett Smith invited T.I. to her Red Table Talk to set the record straight – and teach him a thing or two about commenting on your daughter’s sexual health.
T.I. began admitting “I began to embellish and exaggerate,” and that “I think a lot of people took it extremely literal.”
When Pinkett-Smith asked T.I. if he understood the sensitivity of the situation, he said, “No, but I do now. However, my intentions have terribly misconstrued and misconceived.”
While T.I. said “there was never any objection” from Deyjah to have her father present at the gynecologist appointments, “she did have a problem with me talking about it, though, and I am incredibly apologetic – to her – for that.”
Then, Pinkett-Smith explains to T.I. why his daughter may have struggled to speak to him about her sexual health. “I don’t think anyone has a problem with you protecting your daughter,” she said. “It’s the hymen. Having been a young girl myself, having raised several young women, and realising a woman’s journey, in regards to her sexuality, has to be guided mostly by mothers. That’s just me personally.”
Defending himself, T.I. said, “I’m talking about the slimy, girmy, chubby-fingered little boys, who want to defile and destroy the sanctity…The thing that’s the most important in my life – I’m going to deal with that with extreme care.”
T.I. said he’s “not there to protect ‘virginity,’ but “you have to be equipped…Awareness is my first line of defense.”
Pinkett-Smith told T.I. “that’s education. You only have but so much control,” and then asked him what would happen if Deyjah got pregnant.
T.I. said, “you ended your childhood. It’s time to begin adulthood…You need to have a plan,” which prompted Pinkett-Smith to explain how feminism comes into play.
“Here’s what you need to understand,” she said. “There’s a patriarchal structure – it’s structured by the views and outlook of men. It tends to be, at times, oppressive to the feminine journey.”
“There’s a lot that happens in the feminine journey. It’s often told and seen and led through the eyes of men, who know nothing of what we’re going through.”
Sounds like there’s plenty of lessons to be learned here. Here’s hoping Deyjah can eventually forgive her dad for his comments.