Calling suspended ex-Ravens running back Ray Rice "the man I love" and describing the current situation as a "nightmare," Rice's wife, Janay Palmer, used her Instagram account to fire back after video went public on Monday showing Rice punching Palmer in an Atlantic City elevator.
The Baltimore Sun reported that they verified the post was from Janay and intended for public release.
"I woke up this morning feeling like I had a horrible nightmare, feeling like I'm mourning the death of my closest friend," she wrote.
"But to have to accept the fact that it's reality is a nightmare in itself. No one knows the pain that the media & unwanted options from the public has caused my family. To make us relive a moment in our lives that we regret everyday is a horrible thing. To take something away from the man I love that he has worked his [butt] off for all his life just to gain ratings is a horrific. THIS IS OUR LIFE! What don't you all get. If your intentions were to hurt us, embarrass us, make us feel alone, take all happiness away, you've succeeded on so many levels. Just know we will continue to grow & show the world what real love is! Ravensnation we love you!"
Video posted by TMZ.com Monday shows Rice entering the elevator on Feb. 15 with a woman identified as Palmer, then his fiancee. Once inside the elevator, the couple begins arguing. Rice initially seems to slap Palmer, who then starts toward Rice. Rice then strikes Palmer with his left hand. She crumples to the ground, hitting her head on the elevator handrail, which seems to knock her unconscious. When the door opens, Rice drags her from the elevator. There is no sound on the video. The Associated Press reported Tuesday morning that they saw a longer, higher-quality version of the video that shows the couple "shouting obscenities at each other" and Palmer spitting in Rice's face.
Amid public backlash to the TMZ video, the Ravens cut Rice on Monday afternoon. Shortly after, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell suspended him indefinitely. Rice had previously been suspended two games for the domestic violence incident.
Tuesday's Instagram post was the first comments by either Janay or Ray Rice since the new video was posted on Monday.