Bill Cosby, Bill Cosby Rape Trial, Camille Cosby, Clair Huxtable, Featured, News, Oprah Winfrey, True Blue -

Camille Cosby is just another victim of Bill Cosby, but the problem is, she doesn’t even know it

Bill Cosby, Bill Cosby Rape Trial, Camille Cosby, Clair Huxtable, Featured, News, Oprah Winfrey, True Blue -

Camille Cosby is just another victim of Bill Cosby, but the problem is, she doesn’t even know it

Camille Olivia Hanks was studying at the University of Maryland when she met Bill Cosby in the early ’60s. He was doing stand-up comedy in Washington when the two were set up on a blind date. They fell in love and she left school to support his burgeoning career in entertainment.

By 1964, the two were married and they would go on to have five children together. In 1997, their son Ennis (who inspired the character Theo Huxtable on “The Cosby Show”) was murdered. A few years later, Dr. Camille Cosby (she would eventually receive her doctorate from the University of Massachusetts) did a one-on-one with Oprah Winfrey on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” explaining how she’d eventually been able to find joy after mourning the loss of her child.

Throughout that interview it was so clear that you were looking at the real-life Clair Huxtable so much so that even Oprah seemed a bit star-struck by her poise and grace.

During her 2000 appearance on the show, Cosby revealed:

“I became keenly aware of myself in my mid-30s. I went through a transition. I decided to go back to school, because I had dropped out of college to marry Bill when I was 19. I had five children, and I decided to go back. I didn’t feel fulfilled educationally. I dropped out of school at the end of my sophomore year so, I went back, and when I did, my self-esteem grew. I got my master’s, then decided to get my doctoral degree. Education helped me to come out of myself.”

READ MORE: Camille Cosby blasts Bill Cosby accusers and compares them to white woman who got Emmett Till lynched

When asked why she wasn’t content to just settle for being the wife of a famous entertainer she continued:

“I don’t know exactly what it was, except that for me, integrity is important. For me friendships are important, family is important, and it is a blessing if we can have monetary benefits. That’s wonderful, and I love it. But I have to have the security of people who really care about me, and me about them. I want to be surrounded by people who have integrity. And, of course, my name is Camille, not Bill.”

That was a beautiful answer. But a lot has happened since then.

In the last four years, Cosby has stood by her husband with a fervor that at first was commendable. She didn’t rush to divorce him, or pull away during his fall from grace when he lost opportunities, allies, honorary degrees and the respect of the public.

But now, after so many alleged victims (last I counted we were up to 60 women) have come forward, at what point is this “stand by your man” routine more detrimental than dedication?

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According to the dictionary, Stockholm Syndrome is described as “feelings of trust or affection felt in certain cases of kidnapping or hostage-taking by a victim toward a captor.”

Is there such a thing as marital Stokholm Syndrome?

I’m no psychologist, but based on the above description, a part of me can’t help but see Camille Cosby as yet another victim of this scandal. One who has been brainwashed, and become so dependent on her captor (who also just happens to be her husband), that not even something as inconvenient as facts, can set her free from her cognitive dissonance.

READ MORE: Hate Crime: White man screams “N—-R” and punches Black student over parking space

How else could we explain how a woman that brilliant ended up spending 50 years of her life beside a man who is now a convicted serial rapist?

One could even argue that it is Camille’s brilliance that’s kept Cosby afloat for this long, especially considering how sloppy he and his co-conspirators have been in hiding his antics. His sympathizers like to ask questions like, “Well if he was doing all this bad stuff how’d it stay a secret for so long?”

The truth is, he didn’t hide it all that well. People have been talking about his abuse of women for DECADES.

Bill Cosby’s lawyers, yes men, fear tactics, and even Camille standing by his side, gave him the credibility he needed to hide in plain sight. It took a man speaking up publicly and the power of the internet to get the media to finally listen.

Even now, Camille Cosby is putting her God given talents to use. Earlier today, she released a wonderfully written response to his conviction that almost swayed me to the other side. And, I’m a journalist who actually must consider facts for a living! Imagine how compelling her letter is in  convincing others behind the scenes who believe in her husband’s innocence all along.

Camille – actually let me be more respectful – Mrs Cosby, if you ever see this please know that my words are steeped in respect and concern more than judgement. Please understand that to some degree, I even understand why you stayed – at first.

READ MORE: Bill Cosby found GUILTY on all counts in sexual assault re-trial

When you and your husband got together, it was another time where having a strong and powerful husband was as much about survival as it was about love.

There are a host of reasons why so many women like yourself choose to stay: the fear of being alone, financial dependency, belief that they can alter the behavior of their mate, professional status of their partner, deep emotional investment and family obligations.

You two built an amazing legacy, and helped to shape the world’s view of “Black love” in a way that literally shaped many of us in the community. You shaped ME. Anyone who has ever seen me speak up for myself, can attest to the undeniable influence that your alter ego, Clair Huxtable, had on shaping me as a woman. And, there are millions of other little Black girls (who grew into bad ass Black women) who can also thank you for your influence and that spark of inspiration.

But sis, 60 women can’t all be lying.

And while I can’t imagine how hard it must be having to start over at 74 years old, the jury has spoken.

Now, for everyone else reading this, who have talked themselves into staying in a relationship that is all for show, but actually a cesspool of dysfunction behind the scenes, please take a long, hard look at this case. Take it in as a cautionary tale about what happens when you love your spouse and your brand more than you love yourself.

To (ironically) cite a line from Camille Cosby’ own statement, “Someday the truth will prevail, it always does.”

Follow writer Blue Telusma on Instagram at @bluecentric

The post Camille Cosby is just another victim of Bill Cosby, but the problem is, she doesn’t even know it appeared first on theGrio.


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