Within her open letter, Paulino admitted Yams’ business duties to A$AP Mob may have pushed him into using drugs like lean.
My son was under a tremendous amount of pressure to keep the A$AP Mob collective striving together, successful and producing hit recordings. At the same time, he told me he felt as if he was being squeezed out of the group of creative friends he had spent so much time and energy putting and keeping together. For Steven, money was tight; he never had much. In fact, I had to pay for his drug treatment through my employee benefits plan. This was not missed on Steven. Over time, he grew less comfortable with his role and place with A$AP. The business began to weigh on him mentally and physically. He often felt uneasy in having to make the transition from a fun collective of friends, to a business partner in A$AP Worldwide, the business. In my mind, his drug use was a strategy to decompress and release.” (Noisey)
Paulino also shut down the idea of Yams wanting to kill himself by dying from an overdose.
To be clear, I recognize that parents, including me, should discourage drug use. But, you should also know that my son wanted to get high, not die. And because this is the case for many young people, whether we like it or not, we should do all we can do to keep them safe and alive. It’s the humane thing to do. (Noisey)
Last year, A$AP Mob’s A$AP Rocky reflected on Yams’ life coming to an unexpected end.
“He always had a struggle with drugs,” Rocky said. “That was his thing.” Rocky believes Yams’s death was also caused, partly, by apnea and other sleep-related difficulties. “There would be times that I would catch Yams choking on his own tongue,” he said. Several close friends and associates had tried to ease Yams away from drugs, but with little success. “Sometimes he would be adamant about stopping,” Rocky said. “He’d go a month, two months.” (New York Times)
A month prior, A$AP Ferg said the late A$AP Mob founder’s spirit would live on with his crew.
“I feel his spirit every time I walk out the house,” Ferg tells VIBE. “I talk to his moms like every day. There’s not a day that goes past that I don’t think about Yams. Like I said on my Instagram, ‘Your body is just a shell, your spirit is here forever.’ I really believe that Yams is still here with us, rockin’ with us. He’s the reason why we’re always safe at our shows, and why we keep climbin’ to the top. He foreseen a lot of this stuff. He was Yoda, bro.” (VIBE)