FKA Twigs has shared more about her ‘toxic’ relationship with her ex-boyfriend, Shia LaBeouf.
A month after filing a lawsuit against the 34-year-old actor, the singer-songwriter is expanding on her claims, in which she accused Shia of “relentless abuse” during their nine-month relationship.
Speaking on a podcast, FKA twigs, opened up about why she decided to publicly speak out about her experience, saying, “It is something in society that’s a really big problem and it’s really common, but for some reason, we don’t talk about it.”
The singer described the beginning of her and Shia’s romance as an “intense honeymoon period, which is a signifier of how brilliant things can be.”
“It sets the benchmark for if you behave well,” she continued, “and if you fulfill all of the requirements and meet the rules, and all these things of the abuser, it can…be great.”
The duo first met on the set of the actor’s semi-autobiographical film Honey Boy, which they both starred in. When they started dating in 2018, FKA twigs said Shia showed “big displays of affections,” a claim she also noted in her lawsuit. She explained that it felt like the actor was “grooming” her and, therefore, “pushing of your emotional and spiritual boundaries.”
However, once the “happy times” were over, she alleged that Shia became “jealous” and “controlling.” She also claims that the most mundane things could spark a reaction from Shia.
“For me, it was being nice to a waiter or being polite to somebody that could be seen as me flirting or wanting to engage in some sort of relationship with somebody else, when I’m literally just ordering pasta,” she explained. “I was told that I knew what he was like and if I loved him, I wouldn’t look men in the eye. That was my reality for a good four months…that I wasn’t allowed to look men in the eye.”
The singer also alleged the former Disney Channel star would count how many times a day she kissed him, a claim she made in her lawsuit as well. She said Shia had a “quota” over the matter and would change it after it was met. However, FKA twigs didn’t specify if the amount decreased or increased. “It was like touches or looks or kisses,” she elaborated, adding, she never knew “what the right number was.”
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FKA twigs explained that if she didn’t meet Shia’s requirements, “He would start an argument with me, berate me for hours, make me feel like the worst person ever.”
“Any sort of pleasant day-to-day interaction could result in a three-day event of me being berated and kept awake,” she recalled. “I think, for me, I started to really isolate myself. So, I stopped talking to my friends. I didn’t talk to my family. I just was living a very regimented and contained life that I felt got me in the least trouble.”
“I felt so controlled and I felt so confused and I felt so low, beneath myself that the fear of leaving and knowing I had all this work to do to get back to just feeling OK, it was completely overwhelming,” she continued.
Furthermore, the Grammy nominee discussed the moment she got a “massive wake-up call,” which helped her start healing and moving on from her relationship.
As they were driving back from a trip, FKA twigs claimed the Fury star was “threatening to crash the car unless I said I loved him.” She said he “ended up basically strangling me in public at a gas station and nobody did anything. That was a really low moment for me because I felt like I would never be believed.”
Shortly after the alleged incident, the musician said she called a free helpline for women who have been abused. After feeling validated over the phone, FKA twigs saying it was a “massive wake-up call.”
“All I can do is just think about myself when I’m 50 years old [and] I’ve got kids,” she expressed, “I think about what I want to have stood for. This is something that was completely unexpected. I never thought something like this would happen to me…When I’m older, if I have a daughter, I want to be able to say, ‘This thing happened to me. And I dealt with it.'”
As she noted, “This situation is not really about Shia anymore, and it’s not really about me.”
“I am doing this for something much bigger. I just want to change the conversation and the stigma around domestic abuse,” she shared. “I am definitely healed to a point where I can put my experience into something positive to try and help other people. That’s all I want.”
“It’s a big thing to heal publicly and have to do it in front of everyone,” she went on, “but I can do it. I’m a big girl and I can do it.”
The civil lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court, seeks unspecified damages for alleged sexual battery, assault and emotional distress. It was filed under FKA twigs birth name, Tahliah Barnett.
Representatives of LaBeouf, 34, a former child star who dated the singer for about a year in 2018 and 2019, did not respond to a request for comment on Friday.
In a statement to the New York Times, which broke the story, LaBeouf said, “I`m not in any position to tell anyone how my behaviour made them feel. I have no excuses for my alcoholism or aggression, only rationalizations. I have been abusive to myself and everyone around me for years. I have a history of hurting the people closest to me. I`m ashamed of that history and am sorry to those I hurt. There is nothing else I can really say.”
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