Fresh off Van getting cold feet and backing out of his struggle shotgun wedding with Jenn, last night’s episode of Black Ink Crew Chicago took a much serious tone with the revelation of Phor’s longtime battle with depression.
9 Mag’s disastrous visit to Vegas is coming to an end and to put an exclamation point on the trip Charmaine decides to throw a party. While everyone is having a good time, the camera flashes to Phor who looks lonely and is not enjoying himself during the festivities at all. Meanwhile back in Chicago, his brother Don is trying to link with their father who is also going through it after losing his brother and daughter who took her own life.
Don hits one of his favorites spots to and invites his dad out to talk, but he never shows up. Don decides to pop up at his father’s house to check up on him and see what’s going on. The two sit down for a very candid conversation, and Don’s dad explains to him he doesn’t have the energy anymore due to losing his brother and daughter in such a short matter of time. The conversation between the two is a positive one with them coming to an understanding but bringing light to the families struggles with depression.
We Head back to Vegas, and things go from celebratory to serious when Charmaine discovers four in his room crying. Knowing something is definitely up she gets Ryan to have a conversation with his brother. Phor reveals to both of them that he feels he would be respected if he wasn’t alive and has been contemplating suicide the entire night. Ryan asks Charmaine to leave the room, and the two friends have a tear-inducing conversation with the tattoo shop owner hammering home to his brother that everyone loves him and he is not alone.
Charmaine sensing the seriousness of the situation wakes up Van who is also going through it because Jenn wants nothing to do with him now. She brings him up to speed about Phor and suicidal thoughts, and he immediately heads into the room to have a heart to heart conversation with him. Van assures him as well that he is not alone and that he will always be there for him and to make sure he causes no harm to himself stays in the room with Phor overnight.
The crew wakes up to a scary moment when they realize Phor has escaped and is not answering his phone. They reach out to Don breaking down the situation, and he reveals to them that Phor has been battling depression since he was young. After being missing for about 40 minutes, Phor finally responds to Van’s messages assuring him that he is okay and telling him to meet him at a location alone with no camera crew.
Van calls the production team and tells them that Phor is okay and he’s going to with Phor to Atlanta to visit his family to reset. We learn after that Phor will be on leave from the show until further notice.
As you can imagine Twitter came out in support of Phor and rallied behind the tattoo artist/rapper. You can see all the reactions to the powerful episode in the gallery below. We will return to ratchet regular order on next week’s episode of Black Ink Crew Chicago.
Photo: Gary Gershoff / Getty/ VH1