“Surviving R. Kelly” has aired Lifetime the past two nights and it has been triggering for many people. Executive produced by Dream Hampton, the docuseries examines over two decades of R. Kelly allegedly sexually assaulting children and women. Since the docuseries aired, sex abuse hotline have seen an extreme increase in calls.
The Daily Beast reports, “The National Sexual Assault Hotline saw a substantial increase in calls on the night ‘Surviving R. Kelly’ premiered, a RAINN spokesperson told The Daily Beast. The hotline, which connects survivors to emotional support, information and resources, received 27 percent more calls on Thursday than the same day the week before.”
The day the docuseries aired, RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network) tweeted, “Watching or reading about ‘Surviving R. Kelly’ and need to talk? The National Sexual Assault Hotline is here 24/7.”
Several survivors spoke out in “Surviving R. Kelly” and the first episode provided firsthand accounts of Kelly’s relationship with the late, great Aaliyah. There were also details from people close in Kelly’s circle — including but not limited to the singer’s brother, Bruce, ex-wife Andrea and singer Sparkle. The “Be Careful” singer introduced her 12-year-old niece to Kelly, who would allegedly go on to be the 14-year-old girl at the center of R. Kelly’s child porn case from that he was eventually acquitted of. Other survivors said they were forced to have sex with other children, starved if they disobeyed his rules and physically assaulted.