Beyond The Glitz and Glamour;A-Listers Who Didn’t Always Have It All Rosy.

Written by on January 27, 2019

Their flamboyant, borderline seamless demeanors make us believe that they have always had it all easy. We sometimes do not even actually imagine they had childhoods, much less rocky ones. That couldn’t be any further from the truth. Some celebrities sprung straight out of rock bottom to mega fame, and their rags to riches stories are anything but bland.

Nicki Minaj

What to say about the best-selling female rapper of all time? Since she burst into the scene, rap has not been the same. Her relentless milestones are testament to the fact she is other worldly. Needless to say, Minaj is now the female rapper with the most Billboard Hot 100 entries of all time. She has the surreal ability to infuse her punchlines in multiple genres, something that those before her could never even scratch at the surface. Her over-the-top personality is reminiscent of one of those fantasy novel figures, and in a world of Cardi Bs, she sits atop. Do not let that dupe you into thinking that Minaj’s life was always a bed of roses. Born in Trinidad and moving to New York at at the age of 5, Nicki’s childhood was something straight out of a horror movie. Her father was a grave alcoholic and Nicki admittedly lived in fear of her mother’s well-being. Her fears were confirmed when one day her father set the house on fire when her mother was inside, in his quest to harm her. She escaped unscathed. The relentless woes rendered Nicki so hell-bent in being successful, hoping one day she would change her mom’s life. And that she did, might we add!

Mariah Carey

Life was not always rainbows and butterflies for the elusive chanteuse. Growing up biracial was especially hard for MiMi. She has a myriad times opened up about having to grapple with an identity crisis. It didn’t help that her mother chose to live in predominantly white neighborhoods where everyone around them had more money than them, and that culminated in her being a misfit. The black neighborhoods they lived in before her parents separated proved unsafe spaces too,seeing as everyone deemed her a white girl. Before securing a record deal that saw her create her mammoth of a career, MiMi did waitressing jobs. If such is anything to go by, it is only fair that we excuse Mariah for her diva ways. Get it MiMi, you earned it!


Picture this: His dad walked out on him when he was 18 months. They lived in an Afro-American neighborhood and he was often bullied by black guys. He was fired 3 days before his daughter’s birthday and only had $40 in his pocket. As if it couldn’t get any worse, he pulled a failed attempt at suicide and failed. On the flip side, he was the bestselling artiste in the US a little over 3 years later. The gag is, all those curveballs and he still went ahead to be the best selling rapper of all time with 15 Grammys and an Oscar!

Terrence Howard

Before he could run an empire (lots of pun intended!), Howard’s life was horrifying in every last bit. At just 2 years, he witnessed his dad stab a man to death. He would consequently spend 11 months in jail for the same. Then ensued the constant calls for him to stay man as his dad ‘didn’t raise no sheep.’ Howard has since exhibited violent behavior, having been accused and  charged with several accounts of domestic violence.


She may have had one of the most illustrious TV careers and amassed an unparalleled amount of wealth, but she had anything but an ideal upbringing. From being sexually abused at 9 years by her 14-year-old cousin to being beaten by older relatives and turning to substance abuse as her coping mechanism. It was bound to go South the more when she got pregnant at 14 and the baby was born two months premature and passed at two weeks. Then there was the infamous demotion from her job as she was not ‘fit for TV!’ Fast forward to the time of penning this piece, and she is the epitome of resilience and TV money!

Current track