NeNe Leakes and her husband have truly struggled in their relationship since Gregg’s cancer diagnosis.
Gregg has said vile things to NeNe, and now, NeNe is explaining that she’s thought some awful things about him.
She confesses that, as his caretaker, part of her can’t help but wonder if all of this is karma because he cheated on her.
"There’s a lot of things that go through your head," NeNe explains about what it means to be a cancer-stricken loved one’s caretaker.
"And," she points out. "People don’t know that."
Few of us are lucky enough to have never had a loved one get cancer, but most of us are not the primary caregiver.
"I want to show some love to all the caretakers," NeNe expresses. "Because what goes through your head is …"
She pauses, and asks: "I’m just saying this for real, please don’t put this against me. I’m just saying this for real."
"As a caretaker, you start …" she begins again. "It depends on where your relationship is."
In her case, she and Gregg are married, but it hasn’t always been smooth sailing.
NeNe confesses: "You look at the person and think about, you know people love to say, ‘Karma is a bitch’ and karma this and karma that."
If that sounds shockingly honest to you, it’s right.
"Honest to God," NeNe says. "I’m giving y’all the raw, raw, raw."
NeNe rawing us aside, she’s trying to be as forthright as she can so that others know that they’re not alone.
"You look at the person and be like, ‘What is that?’" she says.
"Now, that ain’t right, right?" she admits. "But you’re human."
Sometimes, terrible and negative things — from hateful insults to slurs — pop into people’s minds for no apparent reason.
Some psychologists believe that these intrustive thoughts aren’t always a sign of mental illness or of being a genuinely bad person.
In fact, they may exist as the brain’s mechanism for reinforcing our aversions to act upon negative impulses.
In other words, you think "I should scream in this restaurant," quickly think of how mortifying the thought is, and the impulse is suppressed.
NeNe describes what’s been on her mind: "You look at the person and say, ‘You did so many different things to me. Is this the payback?’"
"You hope not," NeNe quickly expresses. "I’m taking about a caretaker, caretaker."
But then she shares another, more specific thought that has haunted her thoughts.
NeNe confesses that she has wondered: "‘Maybe you’re getting it back from that time you cheated on me.’"
"You don’t never know," NeNe admits. "You don’t ever know."
Many would say that they can categorically assure NeNe that Gregg’s cancer and cheating are unrelated.
"But as a caretaker," NeNe explains. "These are the thoughts that go through your head."
Remember, Gregg has said "evil" things to her during his illness.
NeNe knows that his angry outbursts are "because the medication got them on a roller coaster ride."
"And they lash out on you," NeNe concludes. "It’s a lot, it’s a lot."
Elsewhere in the same video, NeNe confesses that despite being breadwinner, she doesn’t know how to pay her bills.
As in, she doesn’t know the names of the people who handle her utilities. Gregg does all of that.
Obviously, the idea that cancer exists as some sort of spiritual penance or divine retribution doesn’t really work out.
Good, wholesome people get cancer.
Children get cancer. Babies get cancer.
But NeNe isn’t trying to speculate about the theological origins of illness.
She’s just admitting that taking care of a cancer-stricken loved one absolutely sucks.
It is clear that she feels a lot of undeserved guilt for these thoughts. We hope that sharing them helped her to feel better.