“Basketball Wives” reality star Evelyn Lozada claims her ex-husband and former NFL player Chad “Ochocinco” Johnson abused her multiple times during their relationship, although a recent tweet from the 42-year-old athlete seems to suggest otherwise.
On Thursday, July 16, Evelyn released an emotional video on Instagram in response to Chad’s tweet that appeared to be about the impact his domestic battery arrest had on his career. The message read: “I lost my temper for once in life for 3 seconds & it cost me a lifetimes worth of work. I got it all back plus some after getting a 2nd chance & NOTHING will ever get me out of that happy space again.”
Evelyn and Chad got married on July 4, 2012. One month later, the Miami native was arrested and charged with domestic battery after he headbutted Evelyn during an argument, causing a laceration on her forehead that required stitches. Evelyn filed for divorce days after the August incident and their divorce became finalized in September. Chad pleaded no-contest to the charge and struck a plea deal with prosecutors that resulted in a one-year probation sentence. The Miami Dolphins cut the former All-Pro receiver the day after he was arrested, and he never played in the NFL again.
Evelyn recalled the incident while holding back tears, sharing that Chad’s comments were a trigger for the abuse. “I woke up today to Chad’s comment,” she said at the 00:24 mark. “As much as I told myself that I wasn’t going to respond because it’s not the first time that he’s made this comment, I’m just tired. I’m really, really tired. For this man to sit up there and say that he lost his temper for three seconds is infuriating to me.”
“As much as I’m trying to heal from this, it’s messages like this that are triggers for me,” the 44-year-old Bronx native added at the 1:15 mark. “It wasn’t the first time. One of the things that I’m always gonna do is live in my truth, whether it’s good, whether it’s bad, whether it’s ugly. I’m not going to let anybody take away my f–king truth and put this perception out there for a pity party as if you made one mistake. I’m trying to move on from this but as a victim how am I supposed to move on?” she asked at the 1:59 mark.
Evelyn then spoke out about the drama she had with her “BBW” co-star Ogom “OG” Chijindu surrounding Chad. During season 8, OG claimed Chad pursued her while he was married to Evelyn.
“When it comes to ‘Basketball Wives,’ I know that people tend to connect my character on the show with what happened to him,” she said at the 3:05 mark. “And I understand that to a certain degree … I know that I’m the one that has made us look bad, and I’m sorry. I understand that I didn’t always handle things the right way. I’m embarrassed. I’m embarrassed for my family because this is a forever thing,” she explained before stressing that she did not deserve what happened to her.
Evelyn concluded her message by telling domestic abuse survivors, “Don’t let nobody f–king take away your truth. You don’t let nobody make you feel like you’re wrong for being honest and speaking up about something that happened to you.”
Fans supported Evelyn for speaking her truth, as comments like “We stand with you❤️” and “Sending you hugs❤️” came pouring in underneath the post.