Tia and Tamera Mowry, who rose to fame on the ABC/WB sitcom "Sister, Sister" in the '90s, are in the middle of the second season on their reality TV series "Tia & Tamera." The identical twins are not the first celebrities to open their lives up to the critical eyes of TV viewers, and they won't be the last. But in a conference call interview, the sisters talked about the recent mudslinging involving Tia's baby, Cree, and what reality TV can do to families.
Tia finds herself defending her son
In the first season of "Tia & Tamera," Tia was pregnant with her son. She gave birth to Cree in the final episode. And now, on this go around, Cree is a key player in the reality series' action. As most celebrities can attest, if you put yourself in the public eye, you open yourself up for criticism. Still Tia did not expect that the bashing would come in the form of insulting her son's looks. When YBF.com posted a story about Tia and her family, commenters began calling the baby "ugly."
More than 4,000 fans commented back rallying in defense of the actress and mom. Tia spoke about the incident saying, "I have gotten so much support and love from my fans… A lot of people always wanted to say something about the issue, but they never did, and this is the time that they have a platform… Just to hear [their] stories… It's very rewarding because sometimes I don't necessarily speak on certain things but… I'm glad I did."
Still the verbal attacks on Cree will not discourage either actress from having their sons on the show. Tamera stated, "If your family is strong, and he has people that love him, who cares what anybody else has to say... You have that balance of privacy, and you have that balance of sharing him with the world because he is such an amazing child… I know the impact that this child has on other people. And if you are a light, why not share it? "
Tia and Tamera won't showcase their husbands
And while the Mowrys aren't concerned with having their kids on "Tia & Tamera," there is one aspect of their personal lives that they vowed will remain private -- their marriages. The women want to show the mommy sides of their lives, but the wives are not for public display. They understand that on reality TV, producers are always searching for conflict and while they are happy to argue among themselves for the camera, their relationships with their husbands will not be showcased.
Tamera even made the decision not to include her wedding in an episode of Season 1. She noted, "You don't want to put everything out on television. You want to have moments that are just you and your husband. To me, that's what makes marriage special. It's between you two, not you two and billions of people where people can watch over and over and over on YouTube."
Moving to reality TV was a difficult adjustment
For the Mowry sisters, opening their lives to the camera was a big adjustment and one that found a lot of heartache. The judgments about Cree's looks were, by far, the harshest comments they had experienced, but the day-to-day critiques are difficult, as well.
Tamera stated, "I saw myself always wanting to defend myself, to defend my family, to defend my nephew. But now I've learned, you've got to let them just roll off your back, know who you are as a person and focus on the positive, focus on the people that absolutely adore my sister and I."
Tia agreed with her sister, but also stated that celebrities, who claim the criticisms don't hurt, are not being completely honest. She says it's easy to hear reviews of your work as actor, because they are not writing about you; they're talking about your character. "But then when you hear people critique you as a person and who you are, it does hurt a little bit… but overall it's made me a stronger person."
Watch the season finale of "Tia & Tamera" on Monday, 8/27, at 8PM EST on Style. Season 2 will continue on October.
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