Shaq Says It Does Not Take Two People

by Yvonne Chase on April 25, 2022

In a recent interview, former NBA player Shaquille O’Neal aka Shaq opened up about the end of his marriage. When asked why his marriage ended, he said, “It was all me. I was bad. She was awesome. She really was. It was all me. Look, we don’t need to talk about what I was doing but I wasn’t protecting her and protecting those vows. Sometimes you live that double-life and get caught up. I’m not going to say it was her. It was all me.” Kudos to Shaq for taking full responsibility. We often hear people say, “It takes two people to destroy a relationship” however, I disagree with this notion and always have. Watch the video below and we’ll talk after…

When I watched Shaq in this video, I immediately thought of the end of my relationship with my family of origin. Abusive people want you to believe it takes two people because they cannot deal with the reality of who they are at their core and their egregious actions. As I share bits and pieces of my story, the perpetrators want me to take some responsibility for the end of those relationships, however, the reality is like Shaq, it was all them. If you are in a narcissistic abusive relationship and the relationship ends, it is not your fault. You did not play any part in the demise of the relationship.

Reactive abuse is how they blame you for the demise when the reality is the relationship/s would still be intact if they did not make you their target. So, what is reactive abuse? It happens when an abused person reacts to their experience of abuse. Essentially, the abused person is defending themselves. A victim of abuse might yell, slam a door, or even throw something depending on the circumstance. The abuser will point a finger at them to make it seem as if they are the abuser and then blame you for the breakdown of the relationship.

Abusers and their flying monkeys rely on your reaction to use it against you to prove you are mentally unstable. They are notorious for blaming the victim. If that is not enough, they hold on to your reactions for years on end to use against you at their convenience. Reactive abuse is one of the most common tactics abusers use to shift blame for the abuse onto the victim. Moreover, the word “abuse” in reactive abuse comes into play when they twist and manipulate your reaction. This causes others to interpret your reaction as unwarranted. How can anyone remain in a relationship with someone who is malicious enough to set you up at every turn and then use your reaction against you?


Actor Johnny Depp is on trial against his ex-wife Amber Heard who abused him for years. Depp is suing Heard for $50 million. She claims she is the victim of his abuse. What she did to him is vile! In one clip, he talked about finding fecal matter on his bed. He also mentions being secretly recorded. Some of those secret recordings are being played out in court. Thankfully, Johnny can tell the story behind his reaction otherwise he just looks like a crazy man.

Like Depp, my abuser secretly recorded me on numerous occasions and then shared it with others. I recall the day I was granted an order of protection against my abuser and the sheriffs came to serve her. An angry text came through from her sister making me wrong for protecting myself. Yet she was not there daily nor did she know the magnitude of the horror I lived. She was angry that her sister could be arrested and put in jail if she violated the order. Actions have consequences. That’s the reality of life. Had I not taken that step, I can assure you I would be dead or in jail.


As I watch clips of the Depp/Heard defamation trial, I hate that he is reliving the horror of his experience yet I am grateful because his story is shining a bright light on narcissistic abuse and the personality disorders that accompany it. In closing, Shaq’s marriage ended because of his poor choices. He did not protect his wife and he did not protect his vows. It was all him! Johnny Depp’s marriage ended and my relationship with my family of origin ended because of narcissistic abuse. It was all them! It does not always take two people to destroy a relationship especially when the relationship is abusive.

Something to think about…

What say you? Do you believe it takes two people to destroy a relationship? 

Here are 2 things I want you to do now:

1. Leave a comment below

2. Share this post if you like it

Kym April 25, 2022

It’s unusual – and rather refreshing – to hear a celebrity take full responsibility for his own failings and to see that he’s grown and changed from that experience. The whole situation between Depp and Heard is a tragedy, but I do hope that in watching it play out people are learning a bit about what abuse and manipulation look like and can protect themselves.
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Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


It is so refreshing. Shaq really has grown and changed. And yes to learning about abuse. Knowledge gives us power.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Lauren Renee Sparks April 26, 2022

I have not heard the term reactive abuse. Thank you for continuing to educate us.
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Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


I had not heard of it either until my lived experience. Would have saved me a lot of trouble if I did and this is why I share. I don’t want anyone to experience what I lived through.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Trina Taylor April 26, 2022

I had never heard about narcissistic abuse until you began sharing your story. What you lived through sounds like a total nightmare. I am glad you are out of it. Flying monkeys, love bombing, smear campaign, and now reactive abuse are all terms I never heard of. Wow! Thank you for sharing.

Joanne Viola April 27, 2022

The clip with Shaq was wonderful to hear. He took full responsibility, saying nothing ugly or that he would regret. I am glad you are out of such hurtful relationships, and grateful you share so as to help us all to learn.
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Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


It was so wonderful to hear and that is why I shared it. And thanks for pointing out that he did not say anything ugly that he would regret. That’s the way to do it.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Jeremy@ThirstyDaddy April 27, 2022

narcissists are usually really good at deflecting blame and re-writing history to fit their own narrative. Its scary the way some people’s minds work

Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


You are right. It’s beyond scary to me. It is terrifying!
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Jan April 27, 2022

I agree that it doesn’t necessarily take two. That applies to any relationship. The Bible talk about being unequally yoked. You need to be in partnership as equals, with someone who values the relationship as much as you do.

Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


Thanks for adding unequally yoked to the conversation. We often only speak of it in terms of romantic relationships. When someone values the relationship as much as you do, they protect it. Unfortunately, narcissists don’t value relationships benefits their agenda.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Michele Morin April 28, 2022

Broken relationships are so painful. It’s refreshing to hear about a celebrity break up being handled with civility.

I am so sorry for the struggle you have endured and appreciate your transparency in sharing lessons from it.

Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


Painful indeed yet Shaq showed us that the pain can be minimized when we take full responsibility.

Also, sharing is healing. Hopefully, my story helps someone.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Jerralea Winn Miller April 28, 2022

The Depp/Heard story ought to teach us not to assume anything! Only those in the relationship really knows what is happening.
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Yvonne Chase May 2, 2022


Say this louder for the people in the back: Only the people in the relationship know what is happening.
Yvonne Chase recently posted…Getting Angry Is Not A Sin, Living In Anger IsMy Profile

Lois Flowers April 30, 2022

Yvonne, I was not familiar with the term “reactive abuse” but it makes sense the way you explain it. As always, I appreciate your insights into these scenarios playing out in the news. I hope Johnny Depp is able to find some closure now that he is finally able to get his side of the story out. And I also hope that sharing parts of your very painful story is therapeutic for you as well.
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Donna B Reidland May 9, 2022

We live in a broken, sin-cursed world. It’s so sad to see the suffering sin can cause. It is refreshing to see someone take responsibility for their own actions. Sadly, all too many do what you described, blaming and accusing others. Praying you find the grace to forgive completely and allow God to deal with the horrible actions of those who have hurt you. (That doesn’t mean putting yourself in harm’s way or not allowing them to suffer the consequences of their actions.) Blessings!
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