*Well now, this is quite interesting.
Amina Moseley, the daughter and oldest child of Jay Williams, the man Iyanla Vanzant exposed, er, profiled for fathering 34 children, is speaking out about the situation in an open letter to Vanzant.
Interestingly, Moseley is a blogger and in the letter she sarcastically thanks Vanzant for fixing her father. Moseley says that instead of being held accountable for his actions, daddy Jay ended up being seen somewhat as a superstar, without dealing with the broken relationships with his children.
Check it out “Thank You for Fixing My Father”:
Before your show I never felt like just one of 34. I have always had a great and close relationships with 8 of my siblings that I do know. We have a very supportive and loving family overall. We are in constant contact, so it has always felt totally normal. Sure, I always knew that I had an unusual amount of siblings out there, and yes, I RESENTED my father for it. I never, however, despised what he created. All of my siblings are a blessing and they all matter, but I resented what he would NOT do. Yes my mother is the first, and she is amazing woman, nothing short of an inspiration. She has done great on her own, despite my father’s absence, and having so many children, it would be asinine to say he wasn’t necessary. It was just extremely difficult for us to expect anything from him at all. Let’s be honest, you cannot expect a man with 34 children to do something as ordinary as tucking you into bed every night. You certainly cannot expect that same man to put you and your 33 siblings through college. You cannot expect to see him during the holidays, your birthday, or even at your college graduation. Zero expectations, zero consistency. What does a person like that teach a child about how to socialize? Have no expectations? Have no voice? Set no boundaries? I will admit that I have had to ask myself each of those questions at different points in my life but the reoccurring question was always: “When will the day come when my Father will be held accountable and how?”
I thought that day had come when I was invited to join you on your show “Iyanla fix my life.” You were featuring a segment on my father, the man who has 34 biological children with 17 different women. When I was asked to participate I was apprehensive simply because I was not buying it. There was no way that anyone could “fix” my Father. His poor choices have disappointed me, and so many others countless times and I never thought the day would come where he would truly have the opportunity to face his demons. I fought with myself for a bit about my participation, but call it curiosity or wishful thinking, I decided to continue with the show.
I joined my siblings on the couch as we sat across from you, and then my father entered the room. In that particular moment, it felt like seeing a ghost. I hadn’t had any contact with my Father in over a year, and I was not at all pleased to be in presence. I just could not seem to wrap my head around my father knowing exactly how to reach me and where to find me all of this time but was only willing to talk when there was a camera around. Needless to say, my guard was up, and I did not believe that anything positive could come from this show. I began to worry about my siblings feelings, my family’s reputation, and I even questioned how I could receive any healing with my Father from that conversation. I left Atlanta feeling frustrated. All of the feelings about my Father that I had long since suppressed had resurfaced, and I did not want to deal with them, so I didn’t. I tucked my feelings away as I had so effortlessly done before, out of site out of mind. That is until the first show aired.
Sure I had heard the story before, after all it is my family, but it certainly did not feel like my family that I was watching on television. It was as if I was listening to someone else’s story, about a family that I didn’t even know. I could not believe that this man has 34 children! I could not believe that all of these women just let him get away with this! Why didn’t he just get a vesectomy? How did he get to this point? Furthermore, How can this be “fixed”? So just like any other viewer, I tuned into the next episode, and the next, and the next. I was able to see how what he created actually looked from another perspective, and was left with one question: Who holds him accountable?
So here’s what I learned from this process; It was never about highlighting the extraordinary circumstances of my family, it was about healing and finding your inner peace. This has tested my ability to compartmentalize the feelings that I have toward my father, so that I don’t allow his mistakes to mold my decisions. I also have to be cautious as not to project my feelings onto others. I am not just the eldest of 34. Who I am and what I feel as an individual does matter. His absence in my life is not a detriment. In fact, it has actually made me stronger, and serves a greater purpose. I know that things may not ever be perfect between my father and I. I am also aware that the time has passed for him to be a Dad, but I felt that this experience would at the least open up dialogue between us, possibly even maybe one day developing a friendship. So, with that thought in mind, before I left Atlanta I took a picture with my Grandfather and my Dad just so that I could have some inspiration to hold on to.
When I look at that photo, I see a young woman standing in between two of the most important men in her life. She is happy because she knows that the man to her right loves her, provides for her, protects her and she trusts him. She knows that when she calls he will answer, and that he will always put her first. She is his first child, Daddy’s little girl And he always has her best interest at heart.
She also knows that this is not real. This photo represents a “fantasy” of the Father that she never had. The reality is that this is the first photo she has ever taken with the two of these men together at the same time.
The even bigger reality is that last night was the first time that I spoke with my father since the show aired. So far the show has been running for 5 episodes with another follow up episode set to air this upcoming weekend. That means that it took almost half of your season for me to actually have a conversation with my father and that conversation only took place because I called him.