Wow! Jada Pinkett Smith is finally telling the truth about a MAJOR life sitch after nearly a decade of lying!
While promoting her book Worthy, out on October 17, the actress revealed she and her husband Will Smith have been separated since 2016! WHAT?! That’s well before the Oscars slap AND her messy fling with August Alsina!
In a sneak preview of an explosive interview with Hoda Kotb on Today on Wednesday (which will air in full on Friday), the Red Table Talk host revealed she and her hubby decided to “live separately” seven years ago — and still do to this day.
Of course, they’ve managed to keep this incredibly private, and it helps that they were still stepping out in public together and even bought an estate! But rumors of marriage problems have plagued them for a while, especially in 2020 when they discussed being in an open marriage amid affair speculation. On why they chose to go his route, Jada mused:
“Just not being ready yet, still trying to figure out between the two of us how to be in partnership, right? In regards to how do we present that to people, you know, and we hadn’t figure that out.”
While there were “a lot of things” that “fractured” the relationship, she said the biggest was them losing energy to fight:
“I think by the time we got to 2016, we were just exhausted with trying. I think we were both stuck in our fantasy of what we thought the other person should be.”
Despite the challenges, she decided not to file for divorce because she made a promise, she explained:
“I made a promise that there will never be a reason for us to get a divorce. We will work through whatever, and I just haven’t been able to break that promise.”
They were seriously committed to this facade if they were willing to put up with controversy amid her “entanglement.” She even stayed by his side after The Slap controversy — even though they’d been broken up for so long!
Recalling the infamous 2022 Oscars debacle in which her husband stormed the stage and slapped Chris Rock after he made a joke about her shaved head, she dished to People:
“I thought, ‘This is a skit.’ I was like, ‘There’s no way that Will hit him.’ It wasn’t until Will started to walk back to his chair that I even realized it wasn’t a skit.”
Makes sense why she was laughing immediately after the fact! As for what she said to Will once he joined her back at their seats, her first question was, “Are you OK?”
Interestingly, even though they are finally talking about the split, it doesn’t mean they are going to make it legal. All these years later, they are still deep in the weeds of finding a resolution. In a cover story with People, she added:
“We’re still figuring it out. We’ve been doing some really heavy-duty work together. We just got deep love for each other and we are going to figure out what that looks like for us.”
Apparently, it means sticking it out through thick and thin! While they may have hit a rough patch, it’s evident she still has a LOT of love for Will! In the rest of her People interview, she broke down how she fell for the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star in the first place after his divorce from first wife Sheree Zampino. She recalled him calling and asking, “Who are you going out with?” When she told him she was single, he teased, “Well, you’re going out with me now.” On the first time they met, the Girls Trip alum reflected:
“Will called me up one day and said, ’Hit me when you get to L.A.’ and then … click. And I was like, ‘Whoa. Okay.’ And so when I got to L.A., I called him. I haven’t been able to get rid of him since.”
Literally! They’re broke up AND he’s still in her life!
As Jada’s career was taking off at the time, she was being treated for depression, suicidal ideation, and was taking medication, but all of a sudden, she felt she no longer needed the treatment and stopped taking her meds:
“Once I met Will, I completely abandoned my mental health. I was so intoxicated by him and our dynamic. I really felt like I’m cured. He became the drug.”
But, of course, those kinds of mental health challenges don’t go away on their own. And certainly not because you’ve fallen in love…
When she turned 40, the Madagascar star recalls experiencing the lowest lows of her life:
“When I turned 40, I was in so much pain. I couldn’t figure a way out besides death. So I made a plan. … While I was really living the dream, I hit a huge wall — a massive amount of depression. I think that I looked at having outside sources to supplement for the voids that I was feeling inside.”
That’s when she started to hear “voices” which would tell her things like, “kill yourself. You’re not worth anything, you ain’t s**t.” She then tragically began to plot out her death:
“I started looking for places, cliffs where I could have an accident, because I didn’t want my kids to think that their mother had committed suicide.”
Oof. So, so sad.
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It wasn’t until a conversation with her son Jaden that she found a way to get help. The Karate Kid star’s friend mentioned their dad had gone through an ayahuasca ceremony, which is when a leader supplies a plant-based psychedelic drug (usually via a tea) and guides a participant through hallucinations. She decided to try it out for herself, and since the first time she took the drug, “the suicidal thoughts completely went away.” She noted:
“Ayahuasca helped me, it gave me a new intimate relationship with myself that I had never had before.”
Now, Will and their children (including Willow and “bonus son” Trey) have done psychedelics as adults because it had such a huge impact on her:
“I’ve learned how to tune into each one of them and understand their superpowers. And so when Jaden came to me that day and he’s like, ‘Mom, you got to to hear this. My friend’s dad, he had this experience. I need you to come in here and listen.’ I’m like, ‘I’m there. What is it?’ And it opened up a whole new world of healing that I’m so grateful for.”
No matter the drama that consumes her at times, the 52-year-old can always lean on her kids, who have been able to help her find a “deep” love for herself. She told the outlet:
“My children, they’re little gurus. They’ve taught me a deep sense of self-acceptance. … They love every part of me. The level of love, unconditional love that they have for me and their dad. And it’s one thing to want to be the person that gives that unconditional love. And then there’s, to be the recipient of that.”
We bet this family support has been pivotal while she and Will navigate this unusual split. And while we knew they’d taken a brief break during the August situation, we never imagined they’d been broken up for SOOO long! Wow!
If you or someone you know is contemplating suicide, help is available. Consider contacting the 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline at 988, by calling, texting, or chatting, or go to 988lifeline.org.
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