Yandy Smith-Harris‘ motive behind returning her foster daughter Infinity Gilyard to her grandmother’s residence sparked a social media debate on Tuesday, July 20, following the women’s interaction on the latest episode of “Love and Hip Hop: Atlanta.”
Smith-Harris took Gilyard into her home and began the process of being her foster mother in 2018. She ultimately completed the process the following year. The “LHH: ATL” star initially met the teen in 2015 and was her mentor for about three years.
The initial episode, which aired earlier this week, showcased both Smith-Harris and Gilyard, hashing out their differences following a misunderstanding over the Christmas holiday in 2020.
Gilyard claimed that Smith-Harris’ husband Mendeecees Harris was “strategic” in excluding her when he decided to post a family holiday photo that included everyone but the 18-year-old. The snapshot’s caption read, “So many reason to be grateful… God and My family. Happy holidays to everyone!!”
Gilyard stated that it wasn’t the photo that was the issue, but more so Mendeecees’ alleged attempt to isolate her by posting the image with that particular caption. Smith-Harris denied those claims and expressed how much she loved Gilyard when she shifted the conversation to the teen’s past romantic relationship.
The mother of three explained that Gilyard’s relationship with an older unidentified person put a wedge between her and the family. She said, “everything was heaven in our house. When that person got involved in our lives, it tore our relationship apart.”
As the clip transitioned to a confessional scene, Smith-Harris further described in further detail why she felt Gilyard’s partner wasn’t a suitable match for her foster daughter. The 39-year-old stated, “Infinity was in a very toxic relationship with an older person. And as her mother, it is my right to say you are not allowed to date someone that much older than you.”
Smith-Harris also clarified the extremes the unnamed person reportedly would go to in order to tarnish her name. She allegedly claimed the individual went as far as to get her kids taken away from her by calling TMZ. Gilyard would babysit Smith-Harris’ children while, as Smith-Harris reportedly put it, she was working. But the person Gilyard was seeing claimed Smith-Harris would be partying during that time.
“This person was gonna try to get my kids taken from me and call TMZ…I told you, and you still decided to do what you wanted to do.”
Gilyard joined in the conversation to speak her peace while also admitting her actions back then were wrong. She said, “Yes, I did make a decision. You wanted me to stop, and I chose not to stop dealing with that person, but just because I made a decision, did I deserve to be sent back to the wolves. Did I deserve to go live back with my grandmother?”
Following Gilyard’s pressing question of her needing to return to her grandmother’s home, Smith-Harris immediately responded, “Yes, absolutely.” She added the sole reasoning behind that answer was because Gilyard had disobeyed her and continued to fraternize with that particular individual when asked not to.
“I said Infinity, ‘if you do this, you cannot stay under this roof.’ And behind my back, you did it.”
As the scene wrapped up, Gilyard uttered that Smith-Harris wouldn’t have done this publicly if the same scenario had played out with her biological children.
“I don’t think that means oh you gotta treat me like I’m just a stranger. That should’ve never resulted in that. If I was Omere or Skylar right now, you would not have done this on national television. I don’t have nothing more to say; this is actually really done for me.”
As the clip went viral, the reactions from many fans was torn. Some felt Smith-Harris made the right decision in returning Gilyard back home, while others criticized her.
“After hearing the full situation no. I don’t fw Yandy but she could’ve lost her kids behind the person infinity was fw. Infinity has a sense of entitlement that really rubs me the wrong way. She knows she was in the wrong and s–t I mean there’s consequences to your actions. She’s seeing that.”
“She was involved with a toxic older person and that person was causing problems within the family. That young girl made her choice and did some foul stuff. My house, my rules but the choice is yours and she chose otherwise.”
“Yandy caused her more trauma.. Why take someone out of a toxic situation and place them back in that environment… This is why I always thought Yandy used her for a storyline.. And what 17-year-old didn’t date behind their parents back.? When you become a “MOTHER” you gotta take the good and bad…”
“Should’ve never adopted her if you was gon return to sender. The damage has been done and Yandy has to understand and respect that girls choice to be done with her. You sent her back where she came from…that’s it.”