In a recent episode, Simmons -- the 32-year-old daughter of Run-DMC's Joseph Simmons, aka Rev. Run -- talked about going through domestic violence and verbal abuse in a previous relationship and called it one of the "worst times" in her life. ET's Denny Directo sat down with Simmons on Thursday, and she opened up about deciding to be so open about an intensely personal subject.
"It happened to me in the past, and I just felt like there are so many other women like me, right, who are going through the same thing who aren't speaking about it or need that little extra push or encouragement to get out of it," she says. "I want to be their voice and I want them to know they're not alone. And sometimes domestic violence doesn't just look like being hit, or things being thrown at you, but it's also verbal abuse. You have to know when enough is enough and to get out of it but to also have a strong team behind you."
"I have a program called Pressure Makes Diamonds where I go and I speak to the women and just let them know you're beautiful -- just because you have flaws, it's what you come out as," she continues. "And that's what makes you beautiful. It's accepting it and just owning it, and knowing that you grow from what you go through."
Simmons also talked to ET about another episode of Growing Up Hip Hop, when she broke down after having to explain her ex-fiance's death to their 3-year-old son, Sutton. His father, Sutton Tennyson, was shot and killed in Atlanta, Georgia, in November 2018. Simmons says her son mourning his late dad is an ongoing process.
"It's tough," she acknowledges. "He's three years old and he misses his dad, and he wants his dad, and it's an everyday thing for me, in the public eye or out the public eye, I'm dealing with a real situation," she notes. "I really feel for him. I miss his dad, he misses his dad, it's a lot to it."
However, she never considered not being honest with Sutton about his father's death.
"You don't want him to go out and find that truth somewhere else," she explains. "I need to be his source of truth."
Growing Up Hip Hop airs Thursdays on WE tv. For more on Simmons' heartbreaking moment with her son, watch the video below: