Jennifer Lopez, 51, and Ben Affleck, 48, are giving their love a second chance, and her longtime friend Ne-Yo is all for it! The R&B hitmaker — who reconciled with his wife Crystal Renay during the COVID-19 quarantine — told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that he believes in second chances.
“It doesn’t have to be over,” Ne-Yo, 41, said, when asked what advice he’d have for his former World of Dance co-star amid her “rekindled” romance with Ben. “It is not an easy thing to do, to be honest it is not easy, which is why I thank God for the quarantine because it forced [Crystal and I] to do it.”
Ne-Yo and his wife Crystal split in February 2020. But, four months later they reconciled and the “Miss Independent” singer credits the COVID-19 pandemic for re-uniting them. “I genuinely don’t really know if we would have been mature enough to do it on our own,” he admitted, “but the [COVID-19 pandemic] almost made it mandatory for us to get it right. Praise to God. I am happy.”
Prior to re-uniting, the couple had decided to call it quits and were “no longer” communicating, Ne-Yo revealed. “Right before the quarantine happened, we had fallen on a rocky point, and we got to a place where we couldn’t really talk to each other. You know what I mean? It was that kind of thing where there was obviously something wrong and I could tell something was wrong.”
“When I would say something is wrong, she would say, ‘nothing,’ which makes me even madder,” he continued. “Then when you do want to talk it would be, ‘hey I have a flight to catch, I will be back in two weeks.’ We just got to that place where there was no communication. We couldn’t be friends because we couldn’t talk to each other. That reached a head and we decided that divorce would be the best option.”But, a month after they announced their split, the pandemic hit and it changed everything. “they told everybody to go home, and they didn’t give us much more information than that. So, I was like, ‘If we are about to die, I will go where my family is… I will go where my kids are and where my wife is, and I will go home,” he explained.
Spending the quarantine together was a turning point for the couple. “I came home and through being quarantined together, we were forced to start talking about things that we never talked about, those uncomfortable conversations,” Ne-Yo shared. “We really got to what I don’t like about you, and you don’t like about me.’ Whether or not our love is stronger than the things we don’t like about each other.”
“So, a little bit of yelling and a little bit of crying and all of those things,” he continued. “We got to a place where you realize we loved each other more than we didn’t like each other and that opened a door for conversations for us to have to heal what needed to be healed.”
Now the couple are happier than they have ever been. “We are inseparable, she is literally my other half and that is how it feels, and it doesn’t feel like a chore. I don’t wake up and go, ‘Oh God, here we go again!’ At one point we were at that place. So, for us to be where we are at now it just goes to show that if you can step out of your pride. Step out of your pride for a minute or a second and really take the time to listen to another person, not wait for your turn to talk and make it look like your point is more important, but actually listen to what is being said, so you can respond. Things don’t have to end.”
Ben and Jen are certainly proving that things “don’t have to end.” The couple, who were engaged in 2003 but called their relationship off in 2004, reunited in April of this year following Jennifer’s split from Alex Rodriguez. Since getting back together, Jennifer and Ben have quickly become inseparable again.
HollywoodLife.com was able to speak to Ne-Yo thanks to him and his wife, Crystal Renay Smith’s work with Old Spice on their latest Father’s Day campaign, “Dads Have Skin Too.” Check everything Old Spice here!