In an interview on Becky G‘s En La Sala podcast via Amazon Music’s Twitch on Wednesday, the 24-year-old singer discussed her coming-out journey and the roadblocks she encountered that intersected with her fame in the girl group. Before she came out, the then-18-year-old star felt uncomfortable when 5H fans started shipping her and Cabello.
“People thought Camila and I were like into each other, and that made me so uncomfortable. Like disgustingly uncomfortable because I was queer, but she was not,” Jauregui said. “And it made me feel like a predator because of the types of clips people would put together and the types of stories people would write.”
The “Lento” singer went on to explain how she was typecast as “the aggressor” who was “always the one turning her.” The misidentification made her feel “very uncomfortable” because Jauregui said she and Cabello were just “very good friends at that time.”
“And we respected each other. When each other would talk, we would look at each other. We had love for each other, like genuine friendship,” she continued. “In the Latinx culture, I don’t know about you, but growing up, I was very affectionate with all of my friends. Like we tell each other sh– that, yeah, maybe you would think we were gay if you were listening over. But we weren’t, you know what I’m saying, and that wasn’t the interaction.”
Jauregui noted that because of her affectionate nature with Cabello being misconstrued to this day, it’s caused her to “hyper-analyze” every connection she has with another woman and how she flirts with girls because she doesn’t want to make anyone feel like she’s “looking at them this way” or that she’s trying to be invasive. She also added that she doesn’t bring this up often because not only was it “so traumatizing” for her, but she doesn’t want to give people the idea that the rumors are real if she gets angry about them.
“I wasn’t even comfortable with telling my parents about it, you know what I’m saying? Like I wasn’t even comfortable telling myself that I was queer, you know?” she said. “And I also, I didn’t see Camila that way, so it just made me uncomfortable that I could potentially be putting off that kind of vibe onto someone who I wasn’t trying to do that with.”
She started tearing up when talking about her aunt and uncle’s wedding in New Orleans, where a photo of her kissing her girlfriend surfaced online and spread everywhere.
“My aunt, super innocently, posted all the pictures from the photo booth onto her Facebook,” she recalled. “And I have fans that are unreal invasive and followed her…. They found the picture, and they posted it. And they were posting it everywhere…. I just remember being like, ‘Oh my god. Hopefully, this doesn’t blow up….’ And then Perez Hilton outed me in an article and used the picture. And then it went everywhere.”
The Cuban-American star expressed gratitude for her parents and family members accepting her for who she is. And she proclaimed how proud she was of herself in a Notes app message that she transformed into an open letter to Trump and his supporters that she published on Billboard following the 2016 presidential election.
“And that’s where I came out like with myself, as myself,” she declared. “Like I’m owning this and this is who I am, and this is why I feel scared for me and my community right now because the rhetoric going on right now is just alarming, really alarming. And that’s why I felt called to write that.”
Watch Jauregui and Becky G’s conversation in full here.