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‘It’s Giving ‘Acrimony’ Vibes’: Aryn Drake-Lee Posts ‘Receipts’ to Squash the Narrative That She is Money-Seeking Amid Ongoing Custody Battle with Ex-Husband Jesse Williams

Aryn Drake-Lee is done allowing others to spread what she calls a false narrative about her amid an ongoing custody battle. For years, she and her ex-husband, actor Jesse Williams, have been going back and forth over the details of financial support, custody and travel arrangements for their two children. 

The former couple was married for eight years before their divorce was finalized in October 2020, though they had been separated since 2017. They have a daughter, Sadie, 8, and son, Maceo, 6. This past March, it seemed as though the “Grey’s Anatomy” actor and the real estate professional settled their disagreements and were on the path to successfully co-parenting. However, by the end of the month, he filed a request asking that his $40,000 monthly child support be reduced and things have continuously gone downhill since then.

The latest hurdle included an emergency hearing, where Williams accused his ex-wife of blocking him from seeing their children. The actor currently resides in New York and Drake-Lee in California. The mother of two has steered clear of making herself a headline, but with court proceedings being public information, she feels the public has mischaracterized her as being money-seeking. In an effort to provide receipts proving otherwise, she took to social media to share a glimpse of her and Williams’ relationship timeline.

In a Sept. 18 Instagram post, she wrote, “My ex and I met at 22yrs old on August 31st, 2003 in Brooklyn. He was living in Philly, working as a substitute teacher. I was working as a real estate broker in Brooklyn.” She then details how the “Station 19” actor moved in with her after three months, and by 2006 she bought a two-family home and added Williams’ name to the deed.

She shared that in 2007 they became engaged, but the following year they experienced financial strife that left her carrying the household as Williams sought out acting opportunities. By the end of 2008, the actor moved to California to pursue more gigs. Drake-Lee followed shortly afterward. She concluded by adding that her role as Williams’ partner became more involved with her becoming their “unofficial manager, negotiator, and business manager.”

She followed up with a second post hours later, further explaining that “Money comes and it flows. It is a tool and not a representation of my inner nor outer value. It has always been something that I have used to expand my and my people’s options on earth. It might be about money for some. But not for me.” 

Online, social media users are continuing to weigh in on the messy situation. “It’s giving ‘Acrimony’ vibes,” wrote one person making reference to the 2018 Tyler Perry film. In it, a scorned ex-wife seeks to avenge her many sacrifices she made while helping her ex-husband pursue his dreams.

“TAKE US OUT THE GROUP CHAT please…I recommend a therapist not social media but go off tho.”

“This story right here is EXACTLY WHY women don’t wanna build with men. She took on the brunt of that relationship for almost half a decade only for him to leave her once he got famous! SMH.”

“What are we suppose to do with this information? Be a character witness at your trial?”

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