R. Kelly’s family will show their life at home when they appear on WEtv’s Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta this summer.
The show follows the lives of children of hip hop and R&B artists and is executive produced by Angela Simmons and Romeo Miller. Entertainment Tonight confirms that the singer’s ex-wife, Andrea “Drea” Kelly, will appear on the show’s new season. Drea is set to appear on the show with her children and reportedly promises to tell “the truth” about what life is like being related to the R&B singer.
The former dancer’s decision to join the reality show comes just weeks after her ex-husband was indicted on charges that involve four victims, three of which were reportedly underage. The sexual abuse incidents reportedly span over a decade, though the singer denies any allegations.
Drea will star on the show alongside new cast members, TLC singer Tionne “T-Boz” Watkins, and former Love and Hip Hop: Atlanta stars rapper Waka Flocka and Tammy Rivera. In a promo for the show, Drea opens up to T-Boz about what her children have been going through since more allegations have come out against their father.
“I don’t know what it’s like to be R. Kelly’s child. I only know what it’s like to be his ex-wife,” Drea said in the clip.
R. Kelly and Drea were married from 1996 to 2009. Throughout the marriage, Drea claimed that the singer mentally and physically abused her, which she opened up about in the six-part Lifetime docuseries Surviving R. Kelly. In the doc, Drea even accused the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer of locking her in her room for days and only allowing her to come out when he saw fit. R. Kelly has since denied these allegations.
Drea also added to the singer’s legal troubles when he was arrested earlier this month for failing to pay her more than $161,000 in child support for their three children: Joann, 21, Jay, 19, and Robert, 17. The songwriter was released three days later after an anonymous source reportedly paid on his behalf. Since his release, the singer has returned to Instagram for the first time since his recent allegations to wish his daughter, Joann, a happy birthday, though Joann has called her father “a monster” publicly, per People.
Growing Up Hip Hop: Atlanta will be Drea’s second venture into reality TV. She appeared on VH1’s Hollywood Exes in 2012 for two seasons. She said via Instagram in January that speaking her truth in the Lifetime docuseries was something she needed to do to move forward with her life.
“Thank God for his grace, guidance, love, AND deliverance,” she wrote. “I celebrate the woman I am TODAY! Though some want [to] ‘expose’ the pain-filled, scared, abused women I was…..STOP! I AM No longer afraid. No longer willing to silence my PAIN AND SUGARCOAT THE ABUSE I ENDURED because of how my abuser and his LEGAL TEAM were THREATENING to come against me if I ‘didn’t choose wisely.'”