Podcaster and YouTuber Gus Johnson is not really known for controversy. Johnson has largely stayed out of any drama and is better known for his absurd short satirical skits and small-town review series. But all of that has changed.
Johnson announced that he is stepping away from content creation, including his podcast and in-person shows, after a former girlfriend came forward with a series of bad experiences from their past relationship.
On October 22, Sabrina Rios (also known as Abelina Sabrina) posted a YouTube video opening up about some traumatic experiences in her past. In the video, Rios admitted she had suffered an ectopic pregnancy in the past, leading to her fallopian tubes rupturing. She also mentioned a past boyfriend not taking her experience seriously, making the situation even worse for the suffering YouTuber.
Rios said she knew something was wrong but that her partner at the time didn’t want to bring her to the doctor’s office because he wanted to go out for drinks instead. She tried to bottle up her feelings but soon had to ask him for rides to the hospital as her condition worsened. Her then-boyfriend had told her the condition was putting a strain on his life, telling her that “anyone else would have left you by now.”
When Rios would finally get to her appointments, the unmentioned boyfriend would listen in on phone calls to make sure she wasn’t “exaggerating her symptoms.” They would also sit in on her appointments for the same reason.
The video was met with a lot of support from Rios’ fanbase. But many people also wondered about the identity of the unmentioned boyfriend, speculating that it was YouTuber Gus Johnson, who has 3.5 million followers.
Johnson eventually came forward to admit that he was the boyfriend mentioned in Rios’ emotional video. He shared an apology on Twitter but many people, including Rios, are not accepting it.
Johnson explained that the “circumstances” Rios brought up in her video were “extremely hard and complicated” for both of them due to the couple being young and not ready to deal with such a “traumatic medical situation.” Johnson claimed that he later “came to grips” with his behavior and “recognized his shortcomings” after counseling and therapy.
“I would like her to know just how deeply sorry I am. I fully realize what I did was wrong, and wish I could change how I responded and acted during that time,” Johnson said.
The YouTuber also mentioned that he’s grown since then and is always striving to be a better person. In response to the video, Johnson said he has decided to step away from content creation and work “for a while,” although it’s not clear how long.
While many of Johnson’s fans supported him and seemed satisfied with the response, Rios herself sent a tweet that indicated otherwise. She called his apology “misleading” and stated that she will not be forgiving Johnson.
Some of Johnson’s supporters wondered why Rios would bring up her past relationship to begin with, but others said she was clearly traumatized from the overall experience and was using her YouTube channel as an outlet.
Some said that Johnson is now a “great dude” who has grown since the relationship. But many were clearly disturbed by the story, saying that they couldn’t accept the apology or watch Johnson’s content ever again.