Brandy With Oprah

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Postby admin » Tue Mar 19, 2002 2:43 am

didn't watch the first half hour, but still have most of the interview I believe.

oprah: This is sonja norwood, brandy's mother.
>> Hi, mom.

>> Hi, brandy. Hi, oprah. Oprah: And manager. A combination that both admit caused a lot of stress in their close-knit family. Sonja says that she is incredibly proud of who brandy has become, but regrets the pain that her daughter went through to get where she is today. Take a look.

>> The day brandy was born, i told the doctor that she was going to be star. Oprah: Family ties have always been strong for the norwoods, especially between brandy and her mother, sonja. Even while she was in diapers, brandy was drawn to music.

>> At 7 she came and she says, 'i want to be as big as whitney houston one day.' And i said to myself, that's a very tall order. But we'll see what we could do. Oprah: With that, sonja norwood says she made one of the hardest decisions of her life, to quit her job as a financial consultant to begin to manage brandy's promising career.

>> We had just decided that if it didn't work out, i'll go back, get a job. He'll eat a can of beans every day. So i quit, and i use the instincts that i had as a mother. Oprah: Sonja and her husband, willie, intentionally kept tight reins on brandy's career, maintaining strict rules. I read where you said there will be no navel showing.

>> None. Oprah: No navel.

>> None. Oprah: We don't see no navel. We see turtleneck. Sonja was criticized, often accused of being an overprotective stage mother.

>> They said i didn't know what i was doing. They said that i was going to ruin her career. I worried about the pressures of this business on her a lot. To watch her get up early in the morning when she was still sleepy and to watch her work all day and to t try to do school, too, it was just a tear-jerker for me.

>> She wants to make sure that everybody is treating me fairly and treating me right, making sure the business is handled. So she was always there with me. I don't know what i would do without my mother. Oprah: But sonja admits making mistakes along the way.

>> Sometimes i would make a management decision when it should have been a mother's decision and i would make a mother's decision when it should have been a management decision. I had to learn how to go through that process, which was very difficult.

I'm just trying to be me oprah: In her role as manager, sonja says she's often wondered if she pushed her daughter too hard and was partly to blame for brandy's hospitalization in 1999.

>> You see her in the hospital bed and you say, could i be part of the reason why she's there? And just trying to figure out, my god, this is my child. This is not even worth it, you know. None of this is really worth it. Oprah: Although the years were trying at times, sonja continues toanage brandy's career, b their relationship has changed.

>> She'll always be by mom. She'lllways be mommy to me. Oprah: Sonja says she blamed herself when brandy was in the hospital. Brandy says it was the best sleep she ever had. I don't know what you were feeling when you were looking at your daughter asleep for two days.

>> I didn't even know what to feel. I was very -- i felt very responsible as a mother to watch her for two days to sleep, not know what she was going through or what she was thinking. Oprah: Yeah. If you'd known she was talking to god, you might have felt better.

>> I probably would have felt better. But i think one of the most hurtful experiences for me was to watch her prior to going to the hospital and driving her there. Oprah: Because what was that like? She says she doesn't remember.

>> It wasn't two days before she went to the hospital. She went to the hospital the same night, but --

>> really?

>> When we saw her, she was just so happy, you know. Everybody was just really funny. You know, if you said something to her, she thought it was the greatest thing ever. So by her being an actress, we didn'tnow whether she was for real or whether she was acting. That was -- you know, that was difficult to determine at the time. And then after we determined that this was really serious, we felt that we needed to take her to a doctor. And that's what we did. Oprah: Because she was so not herself, you thought she was playing somebody else.

>> She was so out of character. While we were traveling to the hospital, it was the strangest thing, was to have her to sit in the backseat and not know where she was going.

>> Mommy, don't cry. Oprah: Mommy, don't cry. Now we're all going to cry. And so -- and so would you -- you say -- and i think this is very interesting, making mommy decisions when you could have been making management decisions or making management decisions when you should have been making -- do you -- all of us can look back in our lives and think of things we would have done differently. What would you haveone differently, especially since -- i know every parent doesn't want their child to experience pain.

>> Right. Oprah: But nobody wants their child to experience pain, but many times the pain is what you have to go through to get to the other side.

>> That's true. But it's still difficult as a parent to watch your children go through pain. Oprah: What would you have done differently, do you think, now?

>> You see, as a mother and a manager, you have such a big responsibility, because if you don't allow them to do the things that they want to do, then you could possibly get blamed for that as they grow older, of the things that they could have done but you didn't allow them to do. Oprah: Uh-huh.

>> That was the manager's role. Oprah: Okay.

>> As a mother's role, you watch, and you want to say, no. Many times i have said no, but -- and i think that's why i have acquired the titles that i have in the inststry, because i have said no a lot. But sometimes -- oprah: Because you're trying to protect your daughter as a mother.

>> Right. When she wanted me -- i'm always a mother to her, always. Never a manager. Always a mother. So -- oprah: But i w wonder, were there times when you felt like maybe you are the client and not the daughter?

>> Yes, she did.

>> I felt that way a lot, because that's what i felt was going on. My career was going on. My career was perfect. Everything was happening the way it should happen. And everybody, not just my mother, everybody around me, i felt like, god, all these people, and i'm just this celebrity that everybody talks to and depends on and compliments all the time. Oprah: You know, this is what i always wanted to ask. For somebody in your position, and there are not a lot of people in the position, where your child is really in the power position, your child makes more money than you do --

>> thank you, yes. Oprah: Has more money than you do.

>> Yes. Oprah: Has more notoriety than you do, so when you're the mom saying you can't do this, how does that work? We know who has the money has the power.

>> You know what? Oprah: At least that's the way i thought it was.

>> Oprah, no, no, no. Oprah: Okay.

>> That is a very good point. That's a very good point, because when you have a 15-year-old that's making more money than you're making and they are doing adult things, working as an adult, they want to feel free as an adult. Oprah: Right.

>> So you have to decide where do you draw the line. Oprah: Correct.

>> You know, and -- oprah: That's my question? How do you draw the line? I think all parents go through this with their teenagers. They're trying to decide where to draw the line. That's a harder line to draw when your teenager basically is paying your salary.

>> Right. Oprah: Yeah.

>> But this is the way that we handled it. Oprah: Okay.

>> I would have preferred being disliked maybe later on in her life because of me taking a parental role and saying to her, 'i really don't care how much money you make, this is the way we would like for you to do it as long as you're living with us, and this is what would be best for you.' Brandy has always been very vocal, opinionated, and always had the opportunity to say what she wanted to say. But we just drew the line, and sometimes that caused problems, because she would say, 'well, I'm working like an adult. Therefore, i should be able to do adult things.' Oprah: Right, right.

>> And that was very difficult for her to understand sometimes, which caused problems sometimes between the two of us. Oprah: It did.

>> It did. Oprah: Yeah, because i can understand that you would not -- when you're that age, you don't understand --

>> no, you don't. Oprah: -- Why you can't. Coming up, why brandy kept her wedding a secret even from her parents. We'll be right back. oprah: We're here with brandy and her mother, sonja. It was recently revealed that brandy had a secret wedding last summer. Not even brandy's parents knew about it. So what did you think when brandy told you the news?

>> I was -- i was not as shocked. Oprah: You were not.

>> No, i was not. Oprah: As shocked as we were.

>> Right. I remember one day we were standing in the driveway, remember? And she and robert were playing around, and my husband and i said, when are you guys going to get married? And they said we -- we are already. And then my husband and i looked at each other. And we said -- i said, bran, for real? And she said -- and so then my husband stepped to robert. And then robert -- oprah: And what did you say?

>> Dad

>> i said, no, you guys aren'T. I said, i'm going to have t get my shotgun. Oprah: Wow!

>> Dad, that's promoting violence. Oprah: Brandy's husband robert is here in our audience. Hi, robert.

>> Hello. Oprah: You wanted to keep it a secret. Why did you guys want to keep it a secret?

>> We basically just didn't want to make a big deal about it. I'm kind of like just a private person, and it wasn't really a thing where we wanted the whole world to know we was getting married. We just -- it was just between us. It was, you know, just a few of us.

>> So shy. Oprah: He is shy. He's shy. So you finally found somebody that treats you the way god loves you.

>> Yes. He's fabulous. Wow! Thank you. Thank you. Oprah: You know what? One of the things that you said to me is that when you came out of that sleep, which was the best sleep of your life, is that you -- brandy said to me during the commercial that she saw herself in the faces of everybody else.

>> Everybody. Oprah: It really was a spiritual revelation.

>> It really was. Oprah: And you felt differently about yourself.

>> I did. And after that, i wanted to get into life and really explore and be normal for a minute, and it was definitely a process to get to that point where i said, you know, i need to take time off for myself and get into who i am and just figure out the things that i love to do. Oprah: That you missed.

>> That i missed. Oprah: It's interesting, i saw a quote the other day from drew barrymore that said she took the stairs but her childhood took the elevator. You lose it. This work isn't about having a childhood. We'll be right back. It's not about having a childhood. Oprah: Here's what's coming up tomorrow. He admits it. He orreacts.

Belittles his children he's just plain mean.

>> I can be very cold. I'm a total ass [beep] --

>> i think my daughter's afraid of him. Oprah: Families trapped in an emotional deep freeze.

>> It's like living with an iceman.

>> You're basically saying she has a problem.

>> I feel overwhelmed by her needs.

>> So that would be, yeah, it's her problem. Oprah: Cracking the ice. Dr. Phil helps cold and distant husbands. That's tomorrow. More to come. Stay with us. oprah: So what have you learned from all of this, you know?

>> I learned that thee that i've always wanted to feel is who I am. Oprah: Wow! And that came i in that good sleep you had? We all need some sleep like that don't we? We're all like what was it she had?

>> That was a part of it. Definitely a part of it. And just growing from those moments andusust looking back on my life and just seeing everything for what it was. Oprah: And, yo know, there are millions of young girls, older girls, women, everybody, millions of people watching this show right now. What do you want to say to those girls who are exactly -- you can't even imagine how many are watching you right now who are exactly where you were. They're with the boyfriend who's like paging them, where you be right now?

>> Goway, go awa i just want to say to everybody that once you find love, you'll know it. You'll feel it. And that's what you need to go with with your life. Oprah: And it doesn't hurt and it doesn't make you feel badly.

>> It doesn't hurt. Opoprah: Love doesn't hurt.

>> It feels so good. And, you know, growing up you think that love feels different. You think that love is -- is conditional. Oprah: Right.

>> And once you learn that it's not conditional and that it's -- oprah: Yeah, so many people think they have to pay a price for it. It's not.

>> It just is what it is. There's no right or wrong about it. There's no past or future. It's just -- it just is. Oprah: It just is.

>> It is. Oprah: And what would you do differently? I didn't let you finish that.

>> I think i would have been more of a mother, but i was too afraid that if i had not made the change, then she possibly could have been worse than what she is right now. She needed to be protected at 14 15. Oprah: Aren't you proud of who she is though now?

>> I'm very, very -- oprah: To get to 23,here are 57-year-old people still trying to get it.

>> I have learned a lot from her since she's gone through this experience. I've also learned that you don't have to -- you can learn from your children. You can learn from them. You don't -- just because i'm her parent doesn't make it all final.

>> I plan to learn from my little girl. Oprah: Do we have a name? No.

>> No. Can you help me? Oprah: Sure. We'll be right back. I will. I'll be thinking about some things.

>>> It's called operation candiman.

>> It bursted a porn ring. A trail that leads to western washington.

>>> The snow keeps falling in part of our region. We're live with today's trouble spots and what is in store for the rest of the week.

>>> Wait until you hear what happened to a driver after he saw a story about the most Oprah: Okay, brand was going to sing a second song, but she opted to continue to talk to us, so that is so unusual for a singer, because that's all they want to do is sing all the time. She opted to spend the time talking in the hopes that it would help somebody else. So i just wanted to tell you 'full moon' is fabulous. It's already on the charts. You feel good w when it hits the charts. Brandy's back like we've never seen or heard her before. Thank you so much for being here.

>> Thank you. Oprah: T talk to us and share urur music wuss. Thanks to lifetor sharing footage of brandy with us. Lifetime's 'intimate portrait' with brandy will air again on may 3. Thank you, sonja, mother and manager. Brandy brought along c.D.'S. For everyone. It's in the stores right now. You can get your own if you want want -- if you weren't in the audience. Thank you so much. And robert, your shy cuteself. Thank you, everybody

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