Selena Gomez is back on the charts with her first new songs in years, “Lose You to Love Me” and “Look at Her Now.” Fans wasted no time combing through the lyrics of the singles for references to Gomez’s breakup from Justin Bieber last year.
And while Gomez hasn’t directly addressed her songs’ ties to her old relationship, she has gotten candid about the period after her breakup—and how her close friend Taylor Swift helped her move on and get back in the studio.
The details about Swift’s role in helping her pal move on from a broken heart emerged when the singer stopped by BBC Radio’s Beats 1 show for an interview with Zane Lowe this week. Lowe asked Swift what she thought of Gomez’s new music, and she couldn’t stop gushing about it. “Lose You to Love Me,” Swift said, is “the best thing [Selena’s] ever done.”
“She’s been through so much,” Swift added. “I’ve watched so much happen in her life and had a front-row seat to so much, and I’m so proud of her. She is such a revelation because now she’s making her best stuff.”
Swift continued: “The things that she’s overcome, the situations she’s risen above, it’s been a long time since we were friends and she’s the best. She’s just the best. I’m really excited because when somebody has had great life experience, has had really tough things they’ve had to go through and they can process that and make art that’s going to help other people, that’s what kind of song this is. I’m stoked.”
Swift added that she can’t speak for Gomez’s experience entirely, but she’s thrilled at how far her friend has come. “Just from my perspective as her friend, I’ve just never been more proud,” she said.
Later that day, it was Gomez’s turn to chat with Lowe. He played her the recording of Swift’s interview on the air, asking her to respond. Needless to say, things got emotional.
Gomez choked up, revealing that Swift has been by her side through every high and low over the past several years. “She was frustrated when I was frustrated; she was sad when I was sad,” she said, per Elle. “I think [my friends] visibly saw me in so much pain. And they didn’t want it for me but they—sorry—they never stopped loving me.”
As it turns out, Swift was also by Gomez’s side in and out of the studio. The “Lover” singer was one of the first ones to hear “Lose You to Love Me,” Gomez explained. “I played her the song, and I played it with her mom and dad, and I showed her the video and her mom and Taylor started crying,” she said. “And it wasn’t because the song was emotional. It was just because the first thing they said to me was, ‘We’re so happy that you’re here. After seeing all of that, this is such a cool moment.’ And that’s a huge thing for me.”
Gomez added that her rollercoaster relationship with Bieber took its toll, but opening up about it to her closest friends made healing possible. “My heart was just so tired, and I think that allowing myself to just say that was important for me,” she said.
The singers met in 2008 while they were dating two of the Jonas Brothers (Joe and Nick), and have remained close friends ever since. In a 2017 interview, Gomez said that becoming friends with Swift was “the best thing we got out of those relationships.”
Over the past week, Gomez has continued to open up about her new music and the pain that inspired it. In an earlier interview with Ryan Seacrest, she admitted that healing after her breakup wasn’t easy, but she’s channeled it into her album that’s four years in the making. “It took me a long time to get through it,” she said. “Now it’s fine. I’m smiling. It’s so great.”