There they were, Selena Gomez and Justin Bieber, the couple we watched fall in love, grow up together and then fall apart, giddily riding bikes in Los Angeles days after reports surfaced that Gomez and her boyfriend of under a year, The Weeknd, had called it quits. And days later, the visual confirmation we needed: a grainy pap shot of Gomez and Bieber kissing. We were, in a word, shooketh. Were Jelena actually, officially, 100-percent back together?! And when would Gomez address what on Earth was going on with these two Canadian dudes? Well, in a new cover story for Billboard magazine—who crowned the recent kidney transplant recipient and “Wolves” singer, 25, their Woman of the Year—Gomez is opening up about both her breakup with The Weeknd, a.k.a. Abel Tesfaye, and her reconciliation with Bieber—kind of.
When asked point-blank about Bieber, Gomez wouldn’t confirm or deny their renewed romance, but said this: “I’m 25. I’m not 18, or 19, or 20. I cherish people who have really impacted my life.” She continued: “So maybe before, it could have been forcing something that wasn’t right. But that doesn’t mean caring for someone ever goes away.”
She went on to liken the Bieber relationship of her youth to her friendships with fellow child stars like Demi Lovato and Miley Cyrus. “And [that goes for] people in general. I mean, I grew up with Demi [Lovato]. Nick and Joe [Jonas] and Miley [Cyrus]—we’ve gone through seasons in our lives. I don’t think it’s as serious as people make things out to be half the time. It’s just my life,” she said.
The magazine also asked Gomez the “best part of being single”—a sly way of indirectly asking if she was, in fact, single—which the most-followed person on Instagram expertly dodged while offering some insight into her split with Tesfaye. “Something that I’m really proud of is that there’s such a true friendship [between me and The Weeknd],” Gomez said. “I truly have never experienced anything like that in my life. We ended it as best friends, and it was genuinely about encouraging and caring [for each other], and that was pretty remarkable for me.”
In the words of Gomez herself, the heart wants what it wants.
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