Big Sean is clearing the air about his 2014 hit song, “I Don’t F**k with You” (IDFWU).” Which was never meant to be a “diss” track for his ex-fiance, and late actress, Naya Rivera. The Rapper says he would have “never made” the profanity-laden song had he known that Rivera’s life would come to such a tragic and sudden end.
“It was hurtful to even have that [song] be associated with her”
In a new interview with Vulture published on Tuesday, the 32-year-old rapper gets asked if he regrets making “IDFWU,” released shortly after the two called it quits. Especially since many fans associated the song with their 2014 breakup, due it’s lyrics and timing.
“That’s a tough question to answer because I’m still processing a lot of that,” Sean answered. “I don’t feel comfortable talking about it because I want to respect her. She’s made such an impact on people, and she’s done so many great things in her life and her career. It was hurtful to even have that [song] be associated with her,” Sean continued.
Sean (born Sean Michael Leonard Anderson) released the song five months after his split from Rivera and two months after her marriage to Ryan Dorsey. In IDFWU he raps ‘I heard you got a new man/ I see you takin’ a pic / Then you post it up, thinkin’ that it’s makin’ me sick.’ Seeming to reference Rivera’s quick new romance.
“If I would have known something this tragic would have happened, I would have never made the song.”
He then goes on to admit, “It wasn’t a diss to her. I truly made the song and played it for her. She knew about it, and she liked it.” Sean had previously said in an interview that while “IDFWU” was not entirely about Rivera, the last verse did allude to their breakup.
“We had a breakup that was very public, and we were young and we forgave each other and moved on from that.” Knowing now what happened to the late actress, Big Sean explained that he would’ve approached things differently. “If I would have known something this tragic would have happened, I would have never made the song.”
“Sean wasn’t Ryan [Dorsey]”
Sean and Rivera started dating in early 2013 and announced their engagement just six months later, in October of that year. The rapper broke the engagement off by April 2014, saying that it was a ‘difficult decision.’ “Sean wishes Naya nothing but the best and it is still his hope that they can continue to work through their issues privately,” Big Sean’s rep said in a statement at the time.
He went on to date Ariana Grande, whom he hints at in the song. ‘She chose him, that’s her decision/ I got a new chick that I gotta thank God for.’
Rivera married Ryan Dorsey in July of the same year, on the date she was scheduled to wed Sean. Despite their split, Rivera said that she didn’t have any regrets about their relationship. And that it didn’t work out because Big Sean “wasn’t Ryan [Dorsey].” They had their son Josey, 4, in 2015. Naya and Dorsey eventually finalized their divorce in June 2018.
Rivera’s unfortunate demise
On Wednesday, July 8, Rivera went missing while boating with her 4 year old son, Josey in Lake Piru, California. That afternoon, the actress’ son was found alone on the rented pontoon boat, and authorities were immediately called to the scene. On July 13, Ventura County Sheriff’s Department officials announced that they found Rivera’s body following a five day-long search of the lake. She was 33 years old.
Officials believe that the Glee star rescued Josey, boosting him back onto their boat, but was unable to save herself and drowned.
“You are a hero!”
In light of her death, Naya’s former Glee co-stars, family and close circle of friends shared heartfelt tributes in her honor. Big Sean was among those to break his silence on her passing. Sean shared a moving tribute to his ex-fiancée, saying that he was still “grieving and in shock.”
“Rest In Peace Naya, God Bless your Soul! Thank you for blessing us all with your talent and presence,” he wrote on Instagram, calling the actress a “hero.”
“You are a hero! Not just because of how you saved your son. Also because of the barriers you knocked down for so many people to make them feel confident in themselves and to stand tall and be proud. When they couldn’t achieve that on their own,” the rapper continued. “I appreciate and cherish everything that ever happened between us for making me wiser and a better person.”
“I’m still grieving and in shock, I can’t believe this is real,” Sean concluded. “I’m praying for you and your family and I know you’re watching over them and protecting them. Rest In Peace Naya 💙🙏🏾.”
“DONT PRETEND TO BE OKAY WHEN YOU’RE NOT!”
In the Interview, Big Sean also touched upon how he’s recently struggled with creativity issues due to having “so much anxiety.”
“It was destroying me, too. That type of mindset was destroying me, and I didn’t even know,” he expressed, adding, “Once the anxiety starts overflowing, it turns into depression and then you just… that ain’t no way to be when you’re trying to make something. How are you going to attract something you’re not putting out there? You’re trying to listen to 92.3, but your station is on 105. You got to get on that frequency.”
He also referenced his tweet on July 21, in which he posted, “DONT PRETEND TO BE OKAY WHEN YOU’RE NOT!”
“Growing up, you had to be a man. You couldn’t be emotional all the time. That’s looked down on. My granddad was dry. He was an amazing granddad, but he just didn’t show that much emotion. He was a stone-cold military man. I don’t know what he was going through. He never talked about it,” Big Sean explained. “My dad was a little bit more expressive, but he has gone through a lot he never talked about.” He added, “So it was a new thing for me to approach my life like, ‘Let me sit down and talk with somebody.'”
Because of his outlook, Big Sean said he inspired his dad to open up and “pursue therapy.” As the musician summed it up, “It’s something that I’m very proud of.”