After a year of nervous speculation about the state of Beyoncé’s marriage, we can finally rest easy: Jay-Z appears to have finally figured his sh-t out.
Ahead of the GRAMMYs—Jay-Z was nominated five times and didn’t win anything, but that’s a convo for another day—the rapper sat down for an intimate discussion with CNN’s Van Jones. The pair covered everything from activism to the political themes on Jay-Z’s latest album, 4:44, but the convo that hit us like a ton of bricks was when Jones brought up Jay’s wife.
Despite the fact that he all but admits to cheating on Bey on 4:44, everything seems to have settled between the couple, with Jay-Z telling Jones that Bey is his soulmate (AW). “It’s the person I love. And you can be in love with someone, you can love someone, and if you haven’t experienced love and you don’t understand it, and you don’t have the tools to move forward, then you’re going to have complications, period,” said the rapper.
When asked why the couple were so determined to save their marriage, Jay-Z replied, “You can either address [your problems], or you can pretend until it blows up at some point, and for us, we chose to fight for our love, for our family, to give our kids a different outcome, to break that cycle. And for black men and women, to see a different outcome.”
Jones asked Jay-Z if he had any advice for other couples experiencing the same trials. “The best apology is changed behavior. […] You have to acknowledge the pain. You have to let that person have their say,” Jay-Z said. “You have to get on the floor, get on the mattress, and really work through it, and really be honest. And no matter how many times—it takes a while. It’s hard, it’s very difficult.” He added, “It’s difficult to listen to that sort of pain, and you just have to be strong enough. You have to be strong enough to go through that, because the other side is beautiful.”
Would Jay-Z be able to forgive Beyoncé in the same way if she were the one who cheated? “I hope.” Jay-Z said. “I pray that I [would]. She’s the strongest woman I know—her and my mother, they’re battling.”
Arguably music’s most successful couple, the pair showed up to the GRAMMYs looking cool as cucumbers with their daughter, Blue, seemingly reaffirming what Jay-Z told Jones: they’ve made it over the bumps in the road. Go ahead, take that sigh of relief.