Kandi Burruss Calls Daughter Riley’s Father a Deadbeat


Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kandi Burruss may have a newborn, but it’s her thirteen year old daughter Riley’s baby daddy that causing her drama. On this week’s episode of the show, Burruss broke down over the “baby daddy” drama she’s experienced with ex Russell “Block” Spencer.

Kandi called him a “poster boy for deadbeat,” and explained he had gone “years without checking in” on Riley.

“We really don’t talk,” she said. “I’ve always tried to be open whenever he reach out… [but] I don’t respect him no more.”

While talking to Sheree Whitfield, Kandi shared that when she was pregnant, Spencer called her and told her he wasn’t going to have anything to do with their baby. “I told him that day, ‘That’s fine motherf*cker, because you’ll never have to worry about how she is. You’ll need her before she needs you.’ And I meant that sh*t. I meant it,” Kandi said, adding that she never tried to interfere with Riley’s relationship with her father.

“Even if I can’t stand his punk ass, if he wants her to call him, I make her call him,” she said. “But if I really say the sh*t that he’s done that she ain’t privy to, that’s gonna hurt my daughter.”

All of the discussions about Riley’s father started when Block’s girlfriend Kris Kelli dropped by The Kandi Factory to discuss why Riley seemed so distant with her father.

“I know it might seem funny to you for me coming out of the blue like this, but it’s kind of a concern that I’ve been having,” Kelli said, adding that she was encouraging Spencer to reach out to his daughter more. “I’m really all about families. I would love to see you both come together.”

“Riley at a certain point used to reach out to him, and he never really would reach back,” Kandi said. “And she put up this wall… She doesn’t want to deal with it.”

“I didn’t have a relationship with my father,” Kandi said, adding that the situation kills her on the inside. “And I don’t want to see my child go through that.”

Sheree completely sympathized with the situation. “I didn’t have a relationship with my dad either,” Whitfield said. “Little girls, they want their daddies involved. All Riley has is your word to hold on to. So when you don’t show up, that is devastating. It’s sad.”

Kandi’s husband Todd Tucker encouraged Riley to reach out to her father. “I think every daughter should know their dad,” he said. “It ain’t about him or Kandi. It’s about Riley. And you’ve got to do what’s best for her at the end of the day.”

But Riley didn’t seem interested in having a father. “I don’t really want to say that I don’t care, but it’s like … they call that ‘void,’” she told Kandi. “He should be the one [to try to connect with me], not his girlfriend.”

Spencer painted a different picture of the situation. “People don’t know, but I was there when she was born,” he claimed. “I mean… even when [Kandi] was saying I wasn’t doing nothing, I was doing something.”

“If she don’t urge my daughter to call me, I’m not fitting to make you come see me,” he added. “I’m not gonna do that.”

The estrangement really seemed to bother his girlfriend Kelli. “They have shut him out, completely,” she said. “[Kandi] thinks that if she brings Riley around again, he won’t show up.”

“We need a conversation about doing the right thing,” Kelli added.

What did you think of this week’s episode?

Photo Credit: Bravo


10 Replies to “Kandi Burruss Calls Daughter Riley’s Father a Deadbeat”

  1. I don’t watch this show anymore but was bored so read this sorry. It pissed me off. No DUMB F**K, as a father it’s YOUR responsibility to reach out to your child and bend over backwards to be in her life and be a dad, and not the other way round. Riley is better off not knowing this useless ball sac!! I doubt if she needed a kidney to save her life that he would even give her one . He’s just a sperm donor and better left on the curb

  2. I see this story from all angles. As an aging adult, I have a different view than maybe I did when I was young. I understand that Riley never had a dad she could rely on, and he was out of the picture. He is also a man who hurt her mother too by rejecting her. She is a child and sees what she knows her mom may want first, not wanting to hurt her.
    As an adult who found out late about paternity and via a late DNA test, knowing that the dad who raised me was not biologically my father, though he never knew this, I have a different view about it. I was raised, the youngest of 4, in a not so nice environment, and my mother never told me the truth, having died suddenly in her early 60s. This biological dad had come back to see me when I was younger and as a young adult, but she turned him away.
    I found out about this many years later from my much older sister, who had reasons of her own to hate the man, based on keeping a lie for her mother…and did not want me to know him. They made the decision for me. I never even met the man. How do I feel now that I am sure he was my real dad and wanted to see me? It was not a decision I even had a part of, so it is different, but I want to know about the man (who most likely is no longer living), and about my family that I never met, maybe even siblings, about everything, including my health history. I wish I had met him and developed some kind of a relationship with him as an adult, but that never happened. In this case he did not reject my mother as much as she rejected him, having 3 other children at home before me, etc.
    I think everyone should know their parents in whatever relationship they can have, even if it is not too close like a parent, but maybe like an uncle or aunt or just a friend. I believe it is never too late, and I wish I had a chance to do just that.
    I am not making excuses for deadbeat dads, and maybe this new girlfriend of his is a good influence…or not. We don’t know. I think Riley should meet the man with a guardian present at all times. I think no one should make her hate him, but have her make her own opinions without fear. I know Mama Joyce will give him a piece of her mind too. This man needs counseling, and then with guidelines, should be able to see Riley, if he is mature enough now to actually do it with empathy for the girl.

    1. RealSandy thank you for sharing such an intimate side of yourself and a difficult story. I’m sure this was extremely difficult for you to navigate or understand as a young woman . I hope that you’ve healed and found your peace since then ❤️❤️❤️ . Judging by how lovingly you talk about your sons, you’re an amazing mother as well as a remarkable woman xoxo

      I don’t watch the show. But my understanding is that nobody is keeping this man from Riley . All he has to do is pick up the phone and ask to see her or even talk to her . I’m a parent and I will freely admit that there are BAD parents out there. Not every parent is loving or nurturing . I don’t know if the sudden urge to reconnect to your long neglected children , once you’re old and fragile counts as sincerity or simply out of ‘need’ . I don’t mean to pontificate, just simply my observation

      1. RealSandy, I have 2 friends who uploaded their DNA info into Ancestry.com and were able to locate their long lost biological parents or at least half siblings. Apparently , many other people upload their info and then the website would give you a hit based on similar alleles etc and connect you with those profiles. If you haven’t done that, it may be worth a try. Even if your biological father has passed, you could have siblings who would help you know more about him or they may even be looking for you . I’m sorry if I’m stepping out of line but it’s just a suggestion ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

        1. I have done that a few years ago now. I have not found anyone too closely related, and the most related person I found will not put a family tree up or give out anything personal to me. This person’s account is handled by someone else who said she knows nothing…. The matches are mostly 4th cousins or higher. I can see the names and the regions where my ancestors lived, and knowing my mother’s information, I have pinpointed the part of Italy where my paternal ancestors came from, and maybe even the exact town, since I match several from the area. I do know a (questionable first) and last name to go by, and not much else.a I ctually had someone who matched some of my mother’s side of DNA who was adopted tell me via the site, that she found her 90 plus year old mother and sisters on the site through the DNA, but that did not happen for me. What I do know is that my father (who raised me) has family, and my cousin (actually at least 2 cousins) and her daughter, my more distant cousin told me they were on Ancestry and did the DNA…and I did not match them at all, though I did not say to them that I did DNA, since I know the names. I have myself on the site without my full name visible.
          I recently found that I can upload the raw dna data to another site…but I have not done so yet.
          When more people have their DNA tested, I may find out more. Many people don’t know much of their ancestry and don’t try to put family trees or keep them private. You can email and ask for them to let you see it. Only one person obliged me so far.

          Thanks Rain. Sorry I wrote so much everyone.

          1. I imagined that you had done all that but just thought I’d make the suggestion anyways 🙂 I know you’re a smart and resourceful woman and would leave no stone unturned. And yes, there are other site(s) and hopefully you have luck there .

            Please don’t apologize for writing too much. That’s what makes this site so unique, the posters opening up and gifting us their life stories. We are REAL people here, not just handles ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

            1. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ Thanks, Rain. XOXOXO

    2. Having watched from the sidelines on some custody battles, I am going to say that until you live it, you don’t know the full story, and I am wary of a one sided telling of a story no matter how much you like a person. My boyfriend gets labelled as a “deadbeat” because he doesn’t communicate with his ex the way she wants…but he regularly sees his kids, his kids worship him, the oldest wants to live with us more, has been fighting in court to get education and medical information that she blocked him from getting before, and he is fighting for 50/50, yet she labels him as a bad parent and her whole community buys her version of the story, and she gets upset every time somebody finds out just how actively involved he is in their lives. We both keep our mouths closed about a lot of things we have seen her do for the sake of protecting the kids, but she spins stories about us regularly. In her defense, I honestly think she believes the lies she tells, but she even went so far as she told his/the kid’s doctor that he had moved out of the country…he only moved 20minutes away. Some people have convinced themselves of a narrative, and while I don’t know the real story with Kandi, I suspect that we never will and should take her version with a grain of salt. What I will say though, is for the sake of the kid, even if a parent IS a “deadbeat”, that should never be publically said or communicated to the kid. Everything we do is to protect those children, and when they ask questions we can’t provide answers for about their mother’s behaviour, we never condemn her or bad mouth her, we encourage them to discuss those things with her directly. The children should be the ones to decide the relationship they have, and undue influence from parents is an unfortunate reality in many of these situations.

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