Rihanna And Chris Brown: What Happens Now?

About a month ago, Dodai posed some big questions regarding Rihanna and Chris Brown's relationship. And now that reports are swirling that Rihanna has, indeed, gotten back together with Brown, more questions have come up.

"What if Rihanna doesn't break up with Chris Brown? What would happen to her? Her well-being, her carefully-managed image via Jay-Z and the people at Def Jam; her ads for Gucci and CoverGirl cosmetics? Rihanna - and her management - were always reluctant to admit that the star was dating Chris Brown; how will they handle commenting on this incident to the public, should she choose to stay with him? Or will they "encourage" her to stop seeing him?" Dodai asked.

We now know that Rihanna is with Brown, which, sadly, will come as no surprise to those who understand the nature of abusive relationships, yet for the general public, who may not be as tuned in to the cycle of domestic violence, the judgment of Rihanna has already begun. Nobody seems pleased at the news (understandably), but commenters appear to be split between feeling sorry for the singer and being angry with her.

From commenters on the gossip site Oh No They Didn't, for example:

i probably won't ever look at them the same again now.
atleast rihanna's career had a chance, but that just flew out the window.

fuck em both! he needs to hit her ass again! if she didnt learn the first time

If this is true I'm not gonna feel sorry for her when he hits her again

it's really upsetting to me how many people are blaming rihanna, calling her stupid etc. it's not as simple as getting up and leaving. there's a lot more to it than that.

I'm sorry but I no longer feel sorry for her, because she's going right back to the person who put her in that situation

I feel worse for her now. So many women don't have the strength to remove themselves from abusive situations. That makes me incredibly, incredibly sad.

I have been trying to figure out a way to approach this story since last night; my initial reaction was one of anger, and then of sadness: it's a strange thing to feel so strongly about a situation regarding two people who I've never even met, and yet I can't help but feel an overwhelming sense of dread that the nastier reactions posted above will become the norm over the next few weeks. For every supportive comment, there are several cruel ones, diminishing the difficult nature of the situation into "that dumb bitch" types of statements that don't help anyone.

I am angry, but not at Rihanna, at the cycle of violence and the textbook way she seems to be falling back into it, at Chris Brown for his bullshit, half-ass, passive-aggressive apologies, at the hip-hop community for backing Brown and telling us all to forgive and forget, even after that terrible fucking picture was released, and for the missed opportunity here to make a point to young women that you can get out of these relationships, and to young men that beating your girlfriend is completely unacceptable. Of course, we can not expect Rihanna to take up the cause of Domestic Violence Crusader if that is not a position she is emotionally ready to take on at this point, but this entire situation is incredibly sad and frustrating; just as it would be if your friend, Robin from down the street, kept going back to the man who beat the hell out of her.

Perhaps the only silver lining here is that this reconciliation provides a clear example of the cycle of violence; for people out there who keep asking, "But why? How could she?" it may be an opportunity for education and insight. All we can do, as outsiders looking in, is to hope that Rihanna's inner circle will provide her with the same insight, before it's too late.

WTF: Chris Brown And Rihanna Are Back Together [Oh No They Didn't]

Earlier: What Will Happen To Chris Brown And Rihanna?