'It's So Easy to Point Fingers,' Says Houston Family Friend Following Bobby Brown's Tell-All Interview

A source close to the Houston family opens up about Bobby Brown's reports following his 20/20 interview with ABC News' Robin Roberts

Photo: Celebrity Photo

Bobby Brown has finally broken his silence, offering his take on life with ex-wife Whitney Houston and the eery similarities surrounding her and daughter Bobbi Kristina’s deaths. Now a friend close to the Houston family has opened up to PEOPLE exclusively, with their take on the “sad and painful” ordeal.

In Brown’s emotional 20/20 interview with ABC News’ Robin Roberts, the 47-year-old opened up about his and Houston’s battles with remaining sober – and even admitted to using with the late singer right before their daughter’s eyes.

But the close family friend says Houston was not always surrounded by people who had her best interests at heart.

“Means to get drugs, a cast of enablers, the intense pressure of her own celebrity and expectations of that talent, a partner struggling with his own addiction and the spectre of her dependence…this is why we lost Nippy,” the friend tells PEOPLE.

Houston was found unresponsive in a bathtub Feb. 11, 2012 at age 48 at a Beverly Hills hotel, while the pair’s 22-year-old daughter, Bobbi Kristina, was found nearly that exact same way, but in her Roswell, Georgia last January – both from drugs.

Related Video: Bobby Brown Says He and Whitney Houston Failed Bobbi Kristina: ‘We Should Have Been Better. We Could Have Been Better

During his interview, Brown took a bat to longtime rumors that it was he who led Houston to her addiction, and, ultimately, death and called the actions of both Bobbi Kristina’s boyfriend Nick Gordon and members of the Houston family into question.

“It wasn’t me who started her,” Brown said. “I take my part and I take it hard for me even being a part of it, but we all have our own minds and some of us are stronger than others.”

Still, many believe otherwise.

“It’s so easy to say things and point fingers at this stage, but at the heart of it my friend and her daughter are gone because of the same reason while under the care and supervision of those who are still benefiting from the legacy,” says the friend.

“I was there to see my friend go from recreational drug use to using to keep it together. Her struggle was not unlike that of so many others: desire and will at odds with desire and will, to remain sober, to get high.”

Brown’s upcoming memoir titled Every Little Step hits stands June 13.

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