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Mel B Speaks Out About Living in Mom's Bungalow After Abusive Relationship Left Her 'Powerless'

"I wasn't just emotionally and physically abused, there was all the financial abuse, too," the Spice Girls member revealed of her former marriage

<p>Santiago Felipe/Getty</p> Mel B at Sirius XM Studios in New York City in January 2024

Santiago Felipe/Getty

Mel B at Sirius XM Studios in New York City in January 2024

Melanie “Mel B” Brown is opening up about how she got back on her feet after leaving an abusive marriage.

In an interview with the BBC, the Spice Girls member, 48, spoke candidly about how she felt “powerless” following her divorce from Stephen Belafonte in 2017 but found the strength to heal by leaving Los Angeles and moving back in with her mother Andrea Brown in Leeds, England.

The singer revealed just how much her divorce from the film producer, 48, whom she has alleged was physically and emotionally abusive, also took a toll on her financially. “I wasn’t just emotionally and physically abused, there was all the financial abuse, too. I didn’t realize that I didn’t have as much money as I thought I had,” she told the BBC. “So I literally had to eat humble pie, live with my mum.”

<p>Steve Granitz/FilmMagic</p> Mel B at 'America's Got Talent: Fantasy League' in November 2023

Steve Granitz/FilmMagic

Mel B at 'America's Got Talent: Fantasy League' in November 2023

Related: Zig-a-zig-ah! The Spice Girls Then & Now

Brown shared that it was a major adjustment at first. “My mum was the kind of person that would say, ‘Oh you’ve left him now, you’re fine.’”

“Obviously any situation is better than being with your abuser, but when you’ve left that kind of abusive situation, it’s like starting all over again,” the pop star continued. “You have to learn to trust people. You have to learn to trust yourself.”

Brown told the outlet that living in Leeds and surrounding herself with her family “definitely” helped her.

After feeling as though buying her own home again would “never be on the cards,” the former America’s Got Talent judge said that the experience also helped her save enough money to be able to do so, following years of paying legal fees and payments to her ex-husband.

<p> David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty</p> Mel B in London in March 2022

David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty

Mel B in London in March 2022

Related: Mel B Says Victoria Beckham Designed Her Wedding Dress: 'It's Such a Beautiful Honor'

Brown originally filed for divorce from Belafonte after 10 years of marriage in March 2017. During the divorce proceedings, the British star alleged her ex-husband had been abusive toward her, which he denied.

Their divorce was finalized in December 2017 with all abuse allegations dropped and the agreement that Brown would pay Belafonte $5,000 a month in child support in addition to monthly $15,000 spousal support, as well as $350,000 for his attorney fees.

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The singer/TV personality has spoken candidly about the alleged abuse she experienced over the years and reflected on her marriage, among other stories, in the 2018 memoir Brutally Honest.

Since relocating to Leeds, Brown has also become engaged to hairstylist Rory McPhee. The couple announced their engagement after three years of dating in October 2022, and they are planning to marry at St. Paul's Cathedral in London in the near future.

<p>Ray Burmiston/Avalon/Getty</p> Spice Girls photographed backstage at the Brit Awards in February 1997

Ray Burmiston/Avalon/Getty

Spice Girls photographed backstage at the Brit Awards in February 1997

Related: Mel B Honors Scary Spice's Love of Leopard Looks in Hilarious 'Of Course' TikTok Video

Recently, the former X Factor judge has also begun teasing a reunion with all five Spice Girls members, including Victoria Beckham, Emma Bunton, Mel C and Geri Halliwell Horner.

In a March appearance on the U.K. talk show Loose Women, she confirmed, “We are definitely doing something.”

“I’m probably going to get told off [for revealing that], but I’ve said it. There you go," Brown added.  "I'm in trouble now."

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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