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Sherri Shepherd Admits To Settling In Her Marriage: "I Was In My 40s And Scared"

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I'm 26. And while that may seem young to you, watching my friends and family get married and have kids while I'm romantically stagnant with no suitable prospects makes a quarter of a century feel like a lifetime.

As my ovaries and my tolerance depreciate by the minute, it leaves me to wonder if I've been too picky in my dating life, or if I swiped left on Mr. Right a long time ago. Pressure bursts pipes, and sometimes the fear of my biological clock can trigger me to make some pretty irrational decisions. According to Sherri Shepherd, she knows the FOMO struggle and experienced it first-hand in her previous marriage.


After divorcing her first husband, Sherri was fighting for custody of her son when she introduced to a stranger, by mutual friend Niecy Nash, who would one day become her husband. Although her ex had a salacious reputation among her inner circle, you know what they say, love is blind, and their advice fell upon deaf ears. Sherri told D.L. Huguley:

"Everybody said that. Steve Harvey said it, Barbara Walters said it, Whoopi [Goldberg] wouldn't come to my wedding. Everybody tried to tell me. The only person who showed up was Kym Whitley because she got a free iPad and she was my bridesmaid. We gave away free iPads [laughs]."

It's a rule that you should never go grocery shopping when you're hungry, and you should never offer your love to a man when you don't love your damn self. In Sherri Shepherd's case, her fear of being alone led her to make one of the biggest mistakes of her life.

"I was in New York doing 'The View' and I was lonely. That's what it was. You can't do stuff out of fear and being lonely. All of the women of 'The View' were amazing but they had lives. Whoopi would go home and eat her brownies, she was gone for the night. Then, Elizabeth Hasselbeck had her family and Joy [Behar] had hers so I was out there by myself."

Later, that relationship led to fractures in relationships with even her closest friends, including Niecy. Although the two of them have mended their relationship since the divorce, Sherri says that she's wary of ever letting her friends play matchmaker again:

"We had a big blowout. We did. I said, 'Niecy, I will never go out with anybody you introduce me to.' We came to a meeting of the minds yesterday, we were together, she said, 'Would you just go out?' I said, 'Yeah, but I'm not going to get married to any of your recommendations.'"

Ultimately, Sherri was able to take responsibility for her own shortcomings in her former relationship and admitted that she should have never made a major life decision out of a fear of being alone. She explained:

"At the time I was in my 40s and scared. I was like, 'I'm getting older, who's going to want to be in a relationship?' It was a lot of stuff done out of fear. I was also raised to in the church to believe you can't have sex before you get married, so I was horny! The whole celibacy thing, this idea that it's better to get married than to burn. So I got married too because I was horny, and look, we never had sex."
"At the time I was in my 40s and scared. I was like, 'I'm getting older, who's going to want to be in a relationship?' It was a lot of stuff done out of fear."

Sherri is a reminder is to be careful what you pray for, and that you should never settle until you get it. Your standards aren't too high, you just have to be patient enough to meet a man who can rise to the occasion. Sherri learned the hard way that you should never let your fear of missing out cause you to miss out on what you deserve.

Featured image by Instagram/@sherrieshepherd.

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A music lover since childhood, Amira grew up in an artistic household where passion for music was emphasized. “My dad has always been my huge inspiration for music because he’s a musician himself and is so passionate about the history of music.” Amira’s also dealt with deafness in one ear since she was a toddler, a condition which she says only makes her more “intentional” about the music she makes, to ensure that what she hears inside her head can translate the way she wants it to for audiences.

“The loss of hearing means a person can’t experience music in the conventional way,” she says. “I’ve always responded to bigger, bolder anthemic songs because I can feel them [the vibrations] in my body, and I want to be sure my music does this for deaf/HOH people and everyone.”

A Black woman wearing a black hijab and black and gold dress stands in between two men who are both wearing black pants and colorful jackets and necklaces

Amira Unplugged and other contestants on Becoming a Popstar

Amira Unplugged / MTV

In order to lift people’s spirits at the beginning of the pandemic, Amira began posting videos on TikTok of herself singing and using sign language so her music could reach her deaf fans as well. She was surprised by how quickly she was able to amass a large audience. It was through her videos that she caught the attention of a talent scout for MTV’s new music competition show for rising TikTok singers, Becoming a Popstar. After a three-month process, Amira was one of those picked to be a contestant on the show.

Becoming a Popstar, as Amira describes, is different from other music competition shows we’ve all come to know over the years. “Well, first of all, it’s all original music. There’s not a single cover,” she says. “We have to write these songs in like a day or two and then meet with our producers, meet with our directors. Every week, we are producing a full project for people to vote on and decide if they’d listen to it on the radio.”

To make sure her deaf/HOH audiences can feel her songs, she makes sure to “add more bass, guitar, and violin in unique patterns.” She also incorporates “higher pitch sounds with like chimes, bells, and piccolo,” because, she says, they’re easier to feel. “But it’s less about the kind of instrument and more about how I arrange the pattern of the song. Everything I do is to create an atmosphere, a sensation, to make my music a multi-sensory experience.”

She says that working alongside the judges–pop stars Joe Jonas and Becky G, and choreographer Sean Bankhead – has helped expand her artistry. “Joe was really more about the vocal quality and the timber and Becky was really about the passion of [the song] and being convinced this was something you believed in,” she says. “And what was really great about [our choreographer] Sean is that obviously he’s a choreographer to the stars – Lil Nas X, Normani – but he didn’t only focus on choreo, he focused on stage presence, he focused on the overall message of the song. And I think all those critiques week to week helped us hone in on what we wanted to be saying with our next song.”

As her star rises, it’s been both her Muslim faith and her friends, whom she calls “The Glasses Gang” (“because none of us can see!”), that continue to ground her. “The Muslim and the Muslima community have really gone hard [supporting me] and all these people have come together and I truly appreciate them,” Amira says. “I have just been flooded with DMs and emails and texts from [young muslim kids] people who have just been so inspired,” she says. “People who have said they have never seen anything like this, that I embody a lot of the style that they wanted to see and that the message hit them, which is really the most important thing to me.”

A Black woman wears a long, salmon pink hijab, black outfit and pink boots, smiling down at the camera with her arm outstretched to it.

Amira Unplugged

Amira Unplugged / MTV

Throughout the show’s production, she was able to continue to uphold her faith practices with the help of the crew, such as making sure her food was halal, having time to pray, dressing modestly, and working with female choreographers. “If people can accept this, can learn, and can grow, and bring more people into the fold of this industry, then I’m making a real difference,” she says.

Though she didn’t win the competition, this is only the beginning for Amira. Whether it’s on Becoming a Popstar or her videos online, Amira has made it clear she has no plans on going anywhere but up. “I’m so excited that I’ve gotten this opportunity because this is really, truly what I think I’m meant to do.”

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