Spice Girl Mel B and her producer ex-husband, Stephen Belafonte, have had an incredibly tumultuous relationship over the last ten years, and their divorce has been even more explosive than that. Now that it’s been almost a year since the split, Mel B, 43, spoke to the Sun about the “abusive” marriage, the divorce that left her with $936 to her name, and her new book, Brutally Honest, where she details all of the struggles and strengths of the last ten years.

Even though it all looked perfect on the outside, Mel B’s marriage to Stephen, 43, was reportedly far from the dream it seemed to be. Despite the many lavish properties they’d shared and her career back on the rise, Mel was starting to feel trapped. “From being an independent single mum, I became a woman who didn’t know her bank details, didn’t make decisions and had no friendly relationships with old friends or family,” she revealed some of the realities of her ten-year relationship.

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After taking years of what was reportedly described as emotional and verbal abuse, Mel knew she had to make a break for it. But by the time she decided to leave, the majority of her impressive Spice Girls fortune had reportedly disappeared –– by Stephen’s hand. “I walked away with nothing but $936 in a bank account and suitcases full of clothes, books and toys. I didn’t care. I was happy. My kids were happy. Finally, after ten years, I was free,” she said. Clearly, breaking the chains was more important to the former singer than having a ton of cash.

But according to the Sun, before Mel’s relationship with Stephen came to a head, there was even more heartbreak and humiliation. Just before Mel met Stephen, she’d had a year-long whirlwind romance with comedian Eddie Murphy, which resulted in the birth of their daughter, Angel. “From the get-go we were like two excitable kids,” Mel spoke about how well the two got along. They’d planned on a wedding but decided to wait until after Angel’s birth, which gave Mel the time to go back to the UK to clear her head after she and Eddie started having some fights. When she was ready to make it work after a few days of soul-searching, she came back stateside to what felt like a slap in the face.

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Eddie, who is now engaged to Paige Butcher, had been asked about the pregnancy on live TV and had responded with claims that he and Mel weren’t together any longer and that the baby’s father would have to be determined by a paternity test. Mel had been mobbed at the airport with questions over the incident she’d barely had time to process. “He said, ‘Well, you left me.’ He sounded cold. I explained I hadn’t, then said, ‘I’m going to have to leave you now as this is what you’ve done to me’. I was pregnant. Dumped in public and made to look like a complete and utter slut and gold digger. I wasn’t prepared for that tidal wave of vitriol crashing over me,” Mel revealed to the Sun.

Despite the reported ups and downs, Mel’s been through in the recent past, she is determined to keep her head up and be a voice for women in similar situations to her own. “I don’t think any other woman could have survived it the way that I did. So I’m glad the book will expose him for the next woman he’s trying to woo. This is a bad, twisted person who’s going to prey on a woman’s vulnerability, openness or happiness and just crush every part of it,” she said.

If her tenacity is anything to go by, the Spice Girl’s new book might be a little scary, but the ending’s pretty happy.