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Lauryn Hill & Rohan Marley Respond To Selah’s Childhood Trauma Video + Selah Clarifies Her Comments, Ask Fans Not To Bash Her Parents

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Selah Marley opened up for the first time about childhood trauma she suffered during a two-hour long IG Live session, revealing how her mother, Lauryn Hill, beat her and her siblings like “slaves” and how her father, Rohan Marley, being absent has negatively affected her relationships with men now. Get into the family healing process inside…


Selah Marley – daughter of famed singer Lauryn Hill and entrepreneur Rohan Marley – is on a journey of self-healing as she relives her childhood in an effort to understand her life choices and to become more self-aware.

The 21-year-old often goes on her Instagram Live to share her thoughts and opinions on whatever topic is on her mind. During a recent session, she brought up a topic about generational trauma and began to open up about her own experiences and how she’s still processing childhood trauma.

In a two-hour long Instagram Live video, Selah shared what it was like growing up with her “very angry” Grammy Award winning mom, who she said disciplined her and her siblings with belts and switches. She compared the experience to “slave owner sh*t” and said “all Black parents were on that slave owner sh*t.”

Selah said she’s still traumatized by the sound of a belt hitting.

"You go walk to your doom — it’s like walking to your death. And my mother is an amazing woman, but, um, she obviously didn’t do everything right," she shared during the Live.

The granddaughter of Bob Marley also got vulnerable when she talked about how her father, Rohan Marley, was largely absent from her life.

Selah said she saw and mother and father fight a lot, so she “didn’t really see much peace.” When her dad left when she was 10, she said she feels like a part of her stopped growing and maturing. She said she struggles in relationships with men because she's angry at them (projecting the feelings she has for her father), but also feels she needs them.

"I came to the conclusion of how much of my life I’ve f*cked up and how much of me is f*cked up simply because my dad just wasn’t around," she said. "And there’s just a void where there should be a person. And it’s honestly really hard."

Selah said her mother was going through her own trauma when she was a kid, dealing with the music industry,  trying to save a relationship with a man whom she had five kids with who seemingly no longer wanted her, on top of being a mother. 

“She’s Lauryn Hill,” she said. “She’s getting attacked by the media. She was also going through her own sh*t. She had five kids with a man that — they didn’t really get to know each other. So they were always arguing, always fighting.”

She recalled being awake in her room, crying, while her parents fought and argued.

“I don’t think she realizes how much that sh*t affected me,” she said.

Peep a clip from her Live below:

Selah's venting session caused an uproar of comments and DMs for Selah - many people sharing they too have experienced the same childhood trauma. Taking up for Selah, people started dragging her mother for her mistakes.

L-Boogie caught wind of the controversy and addressed it in a lengthy post she shared on Facebook and Instagram.  The"Lost Ones" singer seemingly blamed systemic racism as the reason why she disciplined her children the way she did. She said an "entire opertation" was trying to take her down and that energy was shared in her home life.

"To me, I am just me. If I am guilty of anything it is disciplining in anger, not in disciplining," Lauryn wrote. "The toxic venom I ingested for standing on principle, and confronting systemic racism far BEFORE it was the thing to say or do (everything you NOW celebrate everyone for!)—the people who called me CRAZY and have yet to apologize and say ‘oh yeah, we were wrong’, OF COURSE that seeped into my home, it was intended to. An entire operation trying to break an artist with a voice and knowledge of herself—way ahead of her time—was in motion. I was affected, my family was affected, my children were affected."

Lauryn said once she realized how she and her family were being destroyed she walked away. She said she did so in order to protect her children.

"When I realized that the pressure on me was so incredibly hypocritical and unfair, criminal even, that even my children weren’t allowed to be children, I stepped away. I wasn’t removed, I STEPPED AWAY. Weening myself and my family from the addictions that systems of control attempt to use through fame and celebrity is no joke. It’s painful and people were not above using my children to keep exploiting me. Keeping a child sober minded in the midst of everyone trying to seduce and bribe and coerce is an incredibly challenging thing to do. Sell a few million copies of a recording and see the wolves and sharks for yourself before you determine what’s appropriate and what’s not. The danger was REAL! And this danger I faced alone, unsupported as I should have been, and dumped on by the same people who only a few years before built a fortune off the same gifts they later tried to deny and then COPY. My life has been about protecting my children from all kinds of danger, and that’s only possible when you protect yourself from the danger as well."

The "Ex-Factor" singer acknowledge Selah's feelings and said she has a right to feel the way she feels. Now, she's focused on healing with her daughter and her family.

"Selah is on a road to healing and contextualizing her childhood, and is allowed her process, but if you come for me, come for your own mama, and those absent fathers—come for them too, your grandparents, your great grand parents, your great great grand parents, your great great great grand parents, Caribbean parents, African parents and everyone else damaged and judged for being black and forced to conform and assimilate to western standards of ‘order’ shaped through the filter and lens of anti-blackness."

"Selah and I speak often and she knows we are both working through our stuff—the exploitation, the abandonment, the mistreatment and the muzzling of our own gifts and intelligence to make it more comfortable for others, which is a big mistake to do, it can ONLY lead to implosion or explosion. We’re both learning and healing, and each of my children has a similar story and journey. All of you in a rush to crucify someone, careful who you string up or nail up."

While it may have been harsh, Lauryn justified the way she disciplined her children as a way to them from being shot down in the streets.

"My children are strong-willed and powerful, better I discipline them at home than have them shot down in the streets or locked up. They are not necessarily passive people, and they’re also learning how to navigate a world full of beauty but also full of danger. This was in no way easy to do as a single parent battling a public attack for not conforming, and single-handedly financially responsible for so many. My children’s families on both Hill and Marley sides have been hunted and persecuted for speaking out against and challenging the social, political, economic and spiritual dynamics that require a terroristic fear be put in Black people in order to control them."

Read her full response below: 

Uhhhh black people, what??? Selah has every right to express herself, I encourage it, but she also got the discipline...

Posted by Ms. Lauryn Hill on Thursday, August 13, 2020

Thoughts on Lauryn's response? 

After Selah's IG Live went viral, Rohan shared a throwback family photo of himself with his children with the caption, "My Beautiful Family." He also responded to what she said about him in the video.

"Selah's expression on Instagram is a healing process for her. I'm very happy that she is fearless in her expression," Rohan said in a statement through his publicist. "I love her very much and do apologize for any contributions I may have added by arguing in front of her as a child. I've grown as a man, a spiritual being and a father. I am constantly growing and will teach my children to always take the higher road in any disagreements. I will be there for her no matter how many hours, days, months or years it will take. I will be the best Dad that I can be. One Love."

Let's hope he keeps his word.

Following the buzzy headlines and extra social media traffic, Selah hopped back online to clarify her comments.


"I spoke on that subject for two hours.... It's complex," she said in the "clarity" video. "It's a very complex topic, and really what I was discussing was how a lack of unity in the household can create severe trauma that you're not even aware of," Marley addressed in the IG Story video that was preceded by a written note. "And now, I had to go back and see where these different things impacted my life and how they impacted my life. At the end of the day, I never said my father was a f*cking deadbeat completely. I just said that he wasn't as present as I needed him to be.... Don't go bashing my f*cking father and my family."

"I never said that I did not love them. I said their shortcomings created trauma that I now need to consciously and actively heal from.”

She said she hopes by starting this larger conversation, it will inspire others' transparency, vulnerability and openness in discussing their own family traumas.

Peep her Live and her IG Story posts (where she also addressed the trolls) above and below:


Selah continued the conversation in another IG Live video, thanking everyone for their support on her journey: 

View this post on Instagram

so many of you guys reached out to me in DM that you’ve had similar experiences.. it’d take 5 weeks to respond to everyone, so i wanted to get on live to share my thoughts with you about my healing process. hopefully, some of you may find this useful. if not, that’s fine too! we all have unique experiences, personalities, and needs; so what works for me may not work for everyone. & that’s fine! but i did want to share what i could & open the floor for a more general discussion on how to heal core wounds. at the end of the day, i’m not an expert—just a young adult figuring it out for herself that figured i could share a couple things. i really wish @instagram allowed you to see the comments when it posts these lives because you guys say some of the most profound things i’ve ever seen. i’m eternally grateful for your contribution to these conversations because you guys add a layer of depth, understanding, and resonance that’s genuinely needed & appreciated. i want to specifically say thank you to everyone who rocks with me & contributes to the true healing, growth, and love created in these conversations. oh & btw, if you don’t agree with me, please feel free to excuse yourself & keep it pushing—especially when/if you come to my “live.” i’m still having trouble understanding why some people stick around for the sole purpose of perpetuating negativity. P.S. that apple sauce was great

A post shared by @ selah on

Looks like she's headed down the right path to healing with supportive parents behind her. We Selah and her family the best.


Photo: Evan Agostini/Invision/AP

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