American actor Will Smith recently released a memoir where he opened up about his complicated relationship with wife Jada Pinkett-Smith, the bond that she had with the late rapper Tupac Shakur and his brief experimentation with drugs.
In the memoir, titled Will, released on 9 November, Smith reveals that when his marriage to Jada was on the rocks, he turned to drugs for an escape.
“I was floating deep in outer space… I was trillions of light years away from Earth,” said Smith.
He explained that his experimentation with drugs made him realise who he truly is, and that he did not need anyone else’s validation.
Smith said for the longest time, his mind was tortured by their connection, because of the brilliant man that the rapper was.
“If I’m this beautiful, I don’t need number one movies to feel good about myself. If I’m this beautiful, I don’t need hit records to feel worthy of love. If I’m this beautiful, I don’t need Jada or anyone else to validate me,” said the Men in Black star.
The star touched on the connection Jada and Tupac had, and how insecure he was about their close bond because of the amazing and powerful person and artist that Tupac was.
“Though they were never intimate, their love for each other is legendary – they defined ‘ride or die’. In the beginning of our relationship, my mind was tortured by their connection. He was Pac! And I was me,” said Smith.
Smith explained the effect Tupac had on his emotional state and his self-perception, because he reminded him a lot of his brother Harry, who always made him feel like a coward.
“Pac was like Harry – he triggered the perception of myself as a coward. I hated that I wasn’t what he was in the world, and I suffered a raging jealousy: I wanted Jada to look at me like that,” said the actor.
During a recent Red Table Talk episode, Jada spoke about her sex life with Smith, and how they experienced some challenges because they got married at a young age and had expectations on what their sex life should have been, from being with each other for so many years.
“The thing Will and I talk about a lot is the journey. We started in this at a very young age, you know, 22 years old. That’s why the accountability part really hit for me because I think you expect your partner to know [what you need], especially when it comes to sex. It’s like, ‘well if you love me, you should know. If you love me, you should read my mind’. That’s a huge pitfall,” said the mother of two.
She then expressed how uncomfortable communicating about this topic had been for her in the marriage, but also noted how important it is to have the discussion, especially about sex, because it is never really spoken about in relationships.
“You tell me what you need. Tell me what you want, and on top of it, I know that I have to be accountable to do the same…I really try. It’s uncomfortable, but it’s deeply healthy, and I think around sex because it’s something that we don’t talk about and there’s so much fantasy around it,” said Smith.