On boyfriend Mac Miller‘s death:
“It’s pretty all-consuming,” she says of her grief over Miller. “By no means was what we had perfect, but, like, fuck. He was the best person ever, and he didn’t deserve the demons he had. I was the glue for such a long time, and I found myself becoming . . . less and less sticky. The pieces just started to float away.”
On her rebound relationship with SNL‘s Pete Davidson:
One of the more puzzling chapters of Grande’s public life was her short-lived engagement to Davidson last year, a kamikaze move made in the haze of her breakup with Miller. Her friends had convinced her to decamp to New York, to escape L.A. and her patterns there. “My friends were like, ‘Come! We’re gonna have a fun summer.’ And then I met Pete, and it was an amazing distraction. It was frivolous and fun and insane and highly unrealistic, and I loved him, and I didn’t know him. I’m like an infant when it comes to real life and this old soul, been-around-the-block-a-million-times artist. I still don’t trust myself with the life stuff.”
On the Manchester bombing and how it changed her:
It’s tempting to think of Manchester as the inflection point in Grande’s career, though she shrinks from any narrative about the bombing that might place her at its center. “It’s not my trauma,” she says as tears fill her eyes. “It’s those families’. It’s their losses, and so it’s hard to just let it all out without thinking about them reading this and reopening the memory for them.” She pauses to collect herself. “I’m proud that we were able to raise a lot of money with the intention of giving people a feeling of love or unity, but at the end of the day, it didn’t bring anyone back. Everyone was like, Wow, look at this amazing thing, and I was like, What the fuck are you guys talking about? We did the best we could, but on a totally real level we did nothing. I’m sorry. I have a lot to say that could probably help people that I do want to share, but I have a lot that I still need to process myself and will probably never be ready to talk about. For a long time I didn’t want to talk to anyone about anything, because I didn’t want to think about anything. I kind of just wanted to bury myself in work and not focus on the real stuff, because I couldn’t believe it was real.
On “Thank You, Next”:
“I’ve been boo’d up my entire adult life. I’ve always had someone to say goodnight to. So Thank U, Next was this moment of self-realization. It was this scary moment of ‘Wow, you have to face all this stuff now. No more distractions. You have to heal all this shit.’ ”