Shakinah's 'Catfish' Episode Shows Why Self-Love Is So Important


The catfish of Season 7 must be swimming in the same body of water, because the Jan. 2 episode — the first in a double feature — brought the third celebrity impersonation of six total episodes so far. This time, Shakinah insisted that she was communicating with rapper Chris Brown. Nev and co-host Kamie Crawford tried to prepare her for the worst knowing the outlook seemed grim, and even though "Chris" turned out to be a woman named Johneesha, the ending wasn't all bad. But where are Shakinah and Johneesha from Catfish now that they've put the events of the episode behind them?

We'll get to that, but first, a quick recap. Nev and Kamie quickly realized the account Shakinah reached out to was undeniably fake at first glance. To paraphrase Nev, the person behind the account wasn't doing research or putting even minimal effort into hiding that they weren't the real deal.

In retrospect, though, neither Shakinah or "Chris" cared. Both of them were willing to overlook the obvious red flags solely because they needed someone to talk to. After being betrayed in multiple committed relationships, Shakinah was vulnerable, and all she wanted was love. She told Nev and Kamie that "Chris" made her feel "like a butterfly" because she had been "in a cocoon for so long." She didn't want to believe it could all be a lie. But it was.

It was obvious that the person behind the profile was hiding something, and Nev and Kamie did their best to prepare Shakinah for that. But they never could've fully prepared her for the shock and hurt she underwent after meeting Johneesha. Johneesha and her friend were the creators of the Chris Brown profile, and Johneesha specifically kept the communications going. "At first, it was a joke," Johneesha said after stepping out of a yellow house in Lansing, Michigan. But then she caught feelings.

Whatever preparation Nev and Kamie armed Shakinah with lasted only until she could shut herself inside the car to cry. "I'm so sick of being lied to," she sobbed. "Sick of being hurt."

Like fans have seen from many catfish, Johneesha was hurt, too. She told Shakinah and the crew that she was bullied at a young age, and had a hard time practicing self-acceptance. That's why, she said, she was catfishing — she was using it to gain all of the attention she felt she missed in her upbringing, and Shakinah was only one of many online relationships she developed.

Nev and Kamie masterfully moderated a surprisingly pleasant conversation between the women, and it even ended in a hug between them. Even though Shakinah felt betrayed, she understood what it felt like to be alone, and offered her a listening ear if she ever needed one. Johneesha ultimately vowed to delete the Chris Brown account.

In the episode's post-filming follow-up, Shakinah said Johneesha had not reached out and that they'd both moved on. Now, they're still friends on Facebook. Well, Shakinah is friends with one of Johneesha's accounts. She has two. One was most recently updated on Oct. 10 and the other was on Nov. 8, so they've both been used recently. Why she has two accounts, though, is unclear.

Shakinah's Facebook is set to private, so not much information is available on that front. But here's to hoping her cocooned days remain in her past, and that she's on her way to finding the real, honest love she's always wanted.