Whether or not you’re a fan of Justin Bieber as a person, or even Justin Bieber as a musician, it’s hard not to look at the 27-year-old superstar’s journey and feel a tinge of… joy.
Bieber’s immense fame, which began when he was 16 when the release of “Baby”, at one point looked set to tip him over the edge. He was allegedly doing drugs, getting arrested, and seemingly publicly going off the rails in front of us, as we’ve seen happen so many times to other young celebrities. But at 27, the same age as so many musicians lives ended due to the impacts of fame—Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse, Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison—Bieber is healthy, happy and grounded. According to him, the impact his wife, Hailey Baldwin Bieber, has had on his state of mind cannot be overstated.
Though most wrote off his quickfire engagement and wedding to Baldwin as yet another chaotic Bieber moment, it was, in fact, one of the best decisions of his life.
In a new interview with GQ, Bieber describes getting to a place in his life where he had all the fame and success he’d always wanted, but felt completely depressed and alone. “You wake up one day and…you’re unhappy and you have all this success in the world, but you’re just like: Well, what is this worth if I’m still feeling empty inside?,” he said.
But when he married Baldwin, everything changed. Though they have both been open about the fact that their marriage is not without work.
“The first year of marriage was really tough,” Bieber said. “Because there was a lot, going back to the trauma stuff. There was just lack of trust. There was all these things that you don’t want to admit to the person that you’re with, because it’s scary. You don’t want to scare them off by saying, ‘I’m scared.’”
Bieber said he spent the first year of his marriage “on eggshells,” but at some point he started to actually believe it would work.
“We’re just creating these moments for us as a couple, as a family, that we’re building these memories. And it’s beautiful that we have that to look forward to. Before, I didn’t have that to look forward to in my life,” he explained.
“My home life was unstable. Like, my home life was not existing. I didn’t have a significant other. I didn’t have someone to love. I didn’t have someone to pour into. But now I have that.”
Now, the pair spend most of their time together in their Los Angeles home with Baldwin reminding Bieber to slow down and work less. When he tried to go to the studio to finish his album at night, Bieber told GQ that Baldwin stopped him at the door. “We had dinner together and we talked,” he says. “We didn’t talk about any work sh*t. We just laughed and watched funny videos. And, like, I’m reminded of who I am, not what I do, you know?”