Helen Simmons McCarter- Moore
Helen in Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman The Movie.


African Amerian




Charles McCarter (Divorced), and Orlando Moore


William Jr., Gina, and Jackie


William and Myrtle Simmons


Madea and Jonny Simmons

Other Family

Cora Jean Simmons (Aunt), Brian Baker (Cousin), Shirley Watkins (Cousin), and Aunt Bam

Seen In

Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman The Play and Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman The Movie

Potrayed By

Marva King or Kimberly Elise


Helen is the main character in Tyler Perry's Diary of a Mad Black Woman. She is the wife of Charles McCarter, daughter of Myrtle and William, sister of Jackie and Gina, and granddaughter of Madea.

Background InformationEdit

Helen is the oldest daughter of William and Myrtle Simmons. When she was in high school, she fell in love with Charles and they married right out of high school. Charles wanted to live the "American Dream" and became a successful lawyer while Helen supported him as a wife; cooking and cleaning. Helen dealt with stress from Charles throughout the years they were married. These heartaches included moving her mother into a home, and general stress which caused her two miscarriages with their children. Helen, being raised a devout Christian, supported her husband and love him unconditionally, but she noticed his behavior towards her changed with every dime he made at the law firm. She writes in her diary of her frustrations and embedded anger towards him...

Diary of a Mad Black Woman (Film)Edit

Helen was married to Charles McCarter for 18 years. During this time, Charles was both verbally and physically abusive to Helen in private, putting on the illusion of the perfect marriage behind closed doors. Charles put Helen's mother, Myrtle in a nursing she was in the nursing home. His excuse was that she wasn't apart of the "American Dream". In the movie and play versions, It was revealed that he was cheating on her with a woman named Brenda Johnson. In the movie version, Charles's father Daddy Charles and his late mother Pauline are not seen or mentioned, but are present in the play.

Charles paid a delivery truck man, Orlando to take her belongings and her somewhere else. Furious, she kicked Orlando out of the truck and drove to Madea's house where she stayed. Madea later had a cookout inviting her family and everyone in the neighborhood. That's when she saw Orlando again. Seeing that her cousin, Brian invited him.Where the two initially clashed, Helen makes a forgiving gesture which leads them to formally introduce themselves. Orlando slowly becomes attracted to her while at Madea's cookout.

As the weeks continue, he sees Helen working in a diner with a new haircut during April. He orders a "Number 4" and she remarks "We don't have "number 4's" in this restaurant. He just asks for a coffee in place of the meal. Before she leaves, he makes a complement about her new haircut saying, "I like the new haircut, alot." She says guardedly says thank you before almost tripping over something trying to quickly walk away. She continues to fumble through her hair as she walks away being self conscientious in his compliment. This makes him chuckle as he knows a mutual attraction building between them.

During a rainy night in May when Helen was closing down the diner, Orlando comes to pick her up as she is waiting outside having been sent by Brian. She eventually agrees after declining initially and the two head to chaundra's. She has grown guarded and strong since the incident with Charles as she asks him about himself and what his intentions are taking her out for dinner. She eventually eases up as his answers seem legitimate. He asks her to dance which she initially declines, but ultimately accepts. She gradually becomes attracted, but still guarded due to what happened.

Helen and Orlando

Helen and Orlando Intimacy

Through the weeks, her and Orlando begin to spend much time together. They went on various different dates as they can be seen walking together, relaxing by the pond, even having pillow fights and then sharing kisses together. One night on a specific date in August, Orlando confess that he loves Helen as they have dinner. Later that night, he ask Helen if she feels the same. Still guarded about affirming her feelings, he reassures her that he will not abuse how she feels, but he has to hear it. She affirms that she loves him as well. The next morning, Helen wakes up to wash up and notices a ring on her hand. As she turns, she finds Orlando standing there and he proposes to her. Helen standing there in disbelieve and very emotional of his proposal is interrupted by what saw on the news behind him on the television set.

Helen and Brian are alongside Brenda hearing of Charles's condition. When the doctor asks who the wife is, Brenda quickly answers, "I am soon-to-be..." angering Helen. The doctor asks Brenda if they should try to revive Charles which she says no. Helen quickly intercepts and as still his wife legally, She tells the doctor to do what she can for Charles. Helen and Brenda get into an argument which Brenda abruptly leaves after Helen shouts at her.

Helen fights

Helen proceeds to smack Charles

She takes Charles home and when he can talk he continues to be verbally abusive which Helen fights him back. Her vindication goes in forms of physical to brutal truths that he hasn't heard her affirm, even during their marriage. Charles started to realize how hurtful he'd been to her, and started to utter the words: "I'm sorry". Helen took him to church one day and he got saved.

Still, she had feelings for Orlando, and she was hurt. At the family dinner with Madea, she tells Charles she will always love him and they will always be friends, but she is in love with Orlando. She gives him the divorce papers and ring, kisses him on the forehead and leaves to find Orlando.

Orlando Happy
She finds Orlando, apparently still hurt from her unexpected departure, and says that she just wants him. He wants to make sure and asks, "How do you know that, Helen?" She repeats the same thing he once told her when he confessed his love for her with tears in her eyes, "I carry you in my spirit, I pray for you more than I pray for myself, and if you are away for more than an hour I cant stop thinking about you, your smile, when you smile my world is alright." He proposes again and she accepts as she wanted to at first. They embrace and kiss then he picks her up and shout to his coworkers, "This woman right here wants to marry me, ya'll! She wants to marry me!" The coworkers all applaud and cheer as he walks with Helen in his arms.

Movie Versus PlayEdit

  • Anniversary (20 years-play, 18 years-movie)
  • Brenda (good friend-play), unknown-movie)
  • Charles give her the house (play), Charles throws her out (movie)
  • Charles & Helen: Stay Married (play), Divorce (movie)
  • Orlando: Stay friends (play), Marry (movie)



  • 2001, Diary of a Mad Black Woman (Play) Played by Marva King
  • 2005, Diary of a Mad Black Woman (Movie) Played by Kimberly Elise


  • "It's Me. How could you say this to me? How could you do this to me?" - to Charles (film)
  • "YOU TOOK LIFE FROM ME, and you never even said "I'm sorry" - to Charles (film)
  • "...If I did all I could, God would bless my marriage." - to Brian (film)
  • "...and I'm not bitter, I'm mad as hell!" - to Orlando (film)
  • "...Did her looks change? Did you grow tired of her?" - to Orlando (film)
  • "...It's a house, not a home." (play)
  • "...Why don't go on and bark like a dog!" (play)


  • She is portrayed by Marva King in the play.
  • She is portrayed by Kimberly Elise in the film.
  • She is approximately 35-36 in the film while approximately 37-38 in the play.