Bobby Brown will attend Whitney Houston's funeral Saturday in Newark, N.J., at the New Hope Baptist Church. Although there were rumors that the family did not want Houston's ex-husband anywhere near the ceremony, he was finally offered an official invite. TMZ reported on Thursday that Houston's family extended the invitation after a change of heart.
At the last minute, the family felt that it would keep the peace at the funeral [to have Bobby there] ... even though some family members were against it, said TMZ's source.
It had originally been reported that Whitney Houston's family did not want Bobby Brown to attend the funeral because they blame him, in part, for the singer's downfall. Houston's very public battle with substance abuse was consistently linked back to Brown, who was also a drug user.
Brown's attending the superstar's funeral will very likely unearth the sordid details of the couple's troubled, 14-year marriage.
Bobby Brown met Whitney Houston, a rising star from Newark, NJ, at the 1989 Soul Train Music Awards. Houston tried to get Brown's attention by throwing things at his head. Apparently, the schoolgirl flirting worked; the couple married on July 18, 1992, after three years of dating. One year later, Houston gave birth to their daughter Bobbi Kristina.
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The relationship quickly turned rocky, as described by MTV, in the 90s and the early 2000s. From drug use to claims of domestic violence, the tabloids dubbed the couple the new Ike and Tina Turner. Fan's blamed Brown, a rapper and a notorious bad-boy, for Houston's wrecked physique and bizarre behavior. Her career, which was rife with success in the 80s and early 90s, spiraled out of control. She missed shows and did not seem to care about her professional persona anymore. Rumors of drug use abounded.
In 2000, security at an airport in Hawaii found marijuana in both Houston's and Brown's luggage. In a 2002 interview, Houston discussed the drug use. First of all, let's get one thing straight. Crack is cheap. I make too much money to ever smoke crack. Let's get that straight. Okay? We don't do crack. We don't do that. Crack is wack, she said to Diane Sawyer.
In 2003, Bobby was charged with misdemeanor battery after he allegedly hit the singer after a heated fight. Yet the couple stayed together and, in 2005, they appeared on the reality show Being Bobby Brown. The show revealed a train wreck-lifestyle. It highlighted the sheer dysfunction of the family unit, and Houston herself admitted that.
The public began to seriously worry.
In a 2009 interview with Oprah Winfrey, Houston discussed the troubled marriage. She said that she and Brown would smoke marijuana laced with cocaine. They would sit next to each other for days, hardly speaking, because they were both so stoned. We weren't buying, like, $20 jumbos; we were paying money, we were buying, like, an ounce...We weren't doing, like, pipe smoking, we didn't get that far. You put your marijuana, you lace it (with cocaine), you roll it up and you smoke it in your weed...It's almost like heroin and cocaine speed-balling, but you level it off with the marijuana, she said.
I was losing me into [the marriage], she said. by trying to be pleasing. She said that she did not do things by herself; she did everything with him. I was so weak to him. I was so weak to the love, she said. He was my drug. I didn't do anything without him. I wasn't getting high by myself. It was me and him, together. We were partners.
Many blamed Bobby Brown for this shocking downfall. Bobby Brown you took our diva and turned her into an addict, one fan wrote on Facebook.
People like to blame Bobby Brown, but she was this way before Bobby, said Ian Drew, senior editor of Us Weekly magazine, told ABC. She drank and had all these problems before Bobby. He didn't take this pristine doll and turn her into the bride of Chuckie. She talked like she did on his reality show, 'Being Bobby Brown.'
Bobby Brown fought back against these accusations. In the 2008 autobiography Bobby Brown: The Truth, the Whole Truth and Nothing But..., Brown defended himself. What people fail to realize is that Whitney is no punk. She definitely knows how to handle and defend herself in situations that could have potentially been violent. Some of the stories in the media made me out to be like Ike Turner, when that wasn't my character. He also said that it was Whitney who was the bad influence and introduced him to hard drugs. I never used cocaine until after I met Whitney. Before then, I had experimented with other drugs, but marijuana was my drug of choice.
Houston herself had said that she and Brown were more similar than most might have thought. She was not America's prissy princess.
When you love, you love. I mean, do you stop loving somebody because you have different images? You know, Bobby and I basically come from the same place, she told Rolling Stone in 1993. You see somebody, and you deal with their image, that's their image. It's part of them, it's not the whole picture. I am not always in a sequined gown. I am nobody's angel. I can get down and dirty. I can get raunchy.
The singer attempted rehabilitation, entering treatment facilities in 2004, 2005 and May 2011.
Whitney Houston was found dead in the bathtub of her Beverly Hilton Hotel on Feb. 11. A cause of death has not yet been declared, though a combination of alcohol and prescription drugs is rumored to be the reason. Guests at the hotel reportedly saw Houston drinking in the mornings before her death and acting erratic in the pool area.
Bobby Brown found out that his ex-wife had died while performing in Mississippi with his group New Edition. Brown broke down on stage and told the audience of 7,500: First of all, I want to tell you that I love you all. Second, I would like to say, 'I love you, Whitney.' The hardest thing for me to do is to come on this stage.
Brown will attend Houston's funeral on Saturday morning and then will perform at Connecticut's Mohegan Sun Casino at 8 p.m. Saturday night.
Below is Whitney Houston's 2009 candid interview with Oprah Winfrey.