In 2016, Jhene Aiko and Big Sean made their relationship public after the singer's a very public split from her ex-husband Dot da Genius. Only a week after finalizing her divorce, Jhene posted an image of her latest tattoo featuring her new boo and prompted an immediate response from the internet world. Rumors of the couple's relationship began swirling two years earlier after a photo was posted of the two at a basketball game. Jhene explained that she met the Finally Famous rapper around the time of her brother's death in 2012, but their relationship had not always been romantic.
"He wanted to take me out on a date. I had a boyfriend, but I still went…just as a friend. I had never been courtside to a game and he's cool. I told my boyfriend 'I'm gonna go to this game.' He wanted to take me out on a date. I had a boyfriend, but I still went…just as a friend. I had never been courtside to a game and he's cool. I told my boyfriend 'I'm gonna go to this game.'"
Later, when Jhene was single and ready to mingle, Big Sean was dating Naya Rivera and the singer assumed she had missed her opportunity. It wasn't until breaking off his engagement with Naya that the two finally got their timing right and finally got the opportunity to give their relationship a shot.
Despite cheating rumors, divorce drama, and maintaining chaotic careers, the couple was seemingly very deeply in love; that is, until earlier this year when it was rumored that the two decided to end their relationship after three years. Jhene finally confirmed the alleged breakup in great detail in her latest freestyle, "Triggered", which had Black Twitter in shambles.
The couple previously alluded to their split via social media but have been tight-lipped about whether or not the rumors were true. Last month, after the death of rap superstar and entrepreneur, Nipsey Hussle, Jhene wrote this on Big Sean's Instagram page:
"You are so special. To me. To the world. While we're both still on this planet I just want to say I love you beyond measure. Even tho I get big mad and u trigger the f*ck out of me. U make me feel. And I appreciate that. Because I thought I was dead inside. My ego has no say when it comes to you. And my heart has been broken a thousand times just to expand. It always finds room for you. I love you from this life to the next and all the other lives we've known each other before. Imma always talk my shit. But Imma always have ur back."
Despite their breakup, both Jhene and Big Sean have remained amicable; but some might say that perception changed after dropping her latest single. According to Jhene, the song, which apparently some fans interpreted as a diss, was a way for her to grieve her relationship in a healthy way. She wrote on Twitter:
"Triggered is NOT a diss song. it is a moment of talking shit out of frustration and passion. It was a moment of exaggerated expression when I was feeling lost and weak. no one is to be blamed or bashed for how I was feeling in that moment. I am in control of my feelings."
In the song, Jhene opens up about the healing process (or lack thereof) that takes place after ending a relationship you thought would last forever. She explained that it was important for her to put her feelings on paper before she could really move forward.
"'Triggered' was a moment. a moment that for me has passed. it is new to you because ur just now hearing it, but for me... it's something I moved on from the moment I expressed it."
When someone says the word "grieve" you may automatically think of a candlelight vigil and funeral, but the truth is, we all grieve different things in different ways. When we were little, saying goodbye to an old relationship meant mustering up the courage to flush your goldfish down the toilet, but as adults and that goldfish is now the man you thought you'd spend your life with, the process becomes much more difficult. The 29-year-old singer revealed that the key to her healing was investing the negative emotions she might have felt at the time into art.
"This is how I paint. this is me yelling and throwing paint at a canvas... then going out into the world feeling less tension, more open... more loving. going to bed feeling less stressed, more optimistic."
Jhene also explained that creating art is one of the most reliable forms of self-care. It's true that energy can't be created or destroyed, but you have full autonomy over your emotions and how they feed your vibe. Having true emotional intelligence is a superpower and knowing how to shift your mood regardless of how you feel can prevent you from making some regrettable decisions. Jhene explained that writing the song was a way for her to walk in her own truth as well as break some old bad habits.
"One night I was so deep in my feelings, I was afraid of what I might do. I didn't want to revert to the same bad habits that have set me back time and time again. I realized that instead of running away from my emotions…I needed to sit with them, express myself and say whatever came to mind. It was healing to say the least…and now I feel a bit more free."
So take it from Jhene, the next time you're on your Waiting To Exhale sh*t ready to bring the noise with some matches, gasoline, and a cigarette, try writing a dope freestyle instead.
Check out Jhene's full video for "Triggered" below!
Jhené Aiko - Triggered (freestyle)www.youtube.com
Featured image by Tinseltown / Shutterstock.com
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Taylor "Pretty" Honore is a spiritually centered and equally provocative rapper from Baton Rouge, Louisiana with a love for people and storytelling. You can probably find me planting herbs in your local community garden, blasting "Back That Thang Up" from my mini speaker. Let's get to know each other: @prettyhonore.
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
The first big leap was moving to a new city and getting settled into my new home. The next big leap? Was finding community and belonging. Moving to a new city excited me! I looked forward to having my own apartment, decorating it, and exploring what the city had to offer. I also found excitement in the thought of meeting new people and expanding my connections. When it actually came down to it, I felt nervous. I heard that making new friends as an adult can be hard because we all have different responsibilities and schedules that may not align. I knew in order for me to really feel at home in my new city, I had to create community.
Having a community of people who I can share memories with, lean on in times of need, and inspire each other is something I always valued. I took a moment to truly center in on what I desired from the new friends I would make. Then I realized it all would have to start with me. I had to be centered and confident in who I was to attract who I desired to be aligned with. As someone who moved to a new city and established quality friendships, I gathered these six tips that helped me feel grounded and create community in hopes that it will help you, too.
6 tips to start building community and making new friends in a new city:
Sean Anthony Eddy/ Getty Images
Be true to yourself
Do you know who you are? If someone asked you to describe yourself in three words, what words would you use? In order to develop deep friendships, you must be a friend to yourself first. Know what refuels you and what zaps your energy. Self-study your habits and why you do the things you do. All this will be important to keep in mind when looking to create bonds with others. Every day there’s all kinds of people telling you who you should be, how you should act, or what you should wear. At the end of the day, the only opinion about yourself that truly matters is your own. Spend some alone time with yourself indoors or out at an event you like to truly discover who you are in this season of your life.
Pray about it
Before you step out into the world and cross paths with all kinds of people, it’s important to pray about building your community. God outlines what true friendship looks like in numerous Bible verses such as "Iron sharpens iron." - Proverbs 27:17 and “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.” - Ecclesiastes 4:9-12. If you desire friendships that last, pray about what you seek in friendship. I remember praying for mentally stable, happy, and whole women who moved through life with abundance mindsets. Take a moment to journal about the community you want to build and then pray on it.
Go to fun events to meet people who share your interests
Most metropolitan cities like Washington, D.C., New York City, and Atlanta are known to have strong young professional communities and events where you can connect with others. I highly encourage you to attend events in or near your community to see what the city is like and meet people. It’s likely that the people at the event have the same interests as you, which is a great way to start a conversation. You can start by searching for events on Eventbrite or following Instagram pages that highlight events happening in your city.
Carlos Barquero/ Getty Images
Accept that you won’t be compatible with everyone you meet
While living in your new city, it’s likely you’ll meet a variety of people. Please know that everyone you meet will not bud into lasting friendships, and that’s okay! You are uniquely created and not made for everyone. Then you’ll meet people who are good for only surface-level connections, and then you’ll have your girls who you can get deep with. I think sometimes people can look down on surface-level friendships, but not everyone needs to fully know you. That’s a privilege to have and to accept within yourself. Continue to check in with yourself and be real about who you crave to spend more time with and who is nice to see for a monthly or quarterly catch-up.
Join Facebook groups & GroupMe chats
If you haven’t used Facebook in a couple of years, it’s time to dust your profile off. Facebook Groups is a great place to join online communities for people who just moved to a new city like you. Typically, you have to agree to the group’s guidelines, and then you can join. For example, you can search for groups in the Facebook app by using keywords like women, Black girl, or [the name of your city] foodies. With the GroupMe app, you’ll have to be invited to join an already existing group. While you’re out and about networking, don’t hesitate to ask if they’re in any online groups/communities they recommend you join too.
Be friendly to folks in your neighborhood
When I first moved to my new apartment, I spent the first week walking around the complex and working in the community spaces to get a better feel of it. I was able to meet people in my neighborhood, enjoy small talk, and learn more about what the community has to offer. Step outside of your comfort zone and work in your apartment’s community space or a local coffee shop to connect with others.
Overall, you may feel alone in your new city, but I guarantee you’re not. There are other people experiencing living in a new city too, and all you need to do is find each other. I hope these tips help ease the nervous feelings you have about building a new community and inspire you to make a new friend today!
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