The untold truth of Bebe Rexha

If it's meant to be, it'll be, it'll be. Baby, just let it be. If you finally got that song unstuck from your head, we apologize. Bebe Rexha burst onto the scene with her collaboration with country group Florida Georgia Line, but the self-taught piano and guitar player made her bones as a songwriter for other artists. You might have heard Eminem and Rihanna's 2013 smash hit "The Monster." Yeah, Rexha co-wrote that.

The Brooklyn-born beauty got her big break in 2010 with a chance encounter with Fall Out Boy's Pete Wentz at a recording studio. That meeting led to the Albanian-American songstress securing the vocalist gig for Wentz's alt-electro band, Black Cards. After leaving the group in 2012, she was awarded the Able Olman Scholarship for her songwriter prowess. That song "Lucifer" she co-wrote for K-pop band Shinee? The music video has over 106 million views on YouTube. Is there any genre Rexha can't conquer? 

But while she makes the music game look easy, her life and road to success weren't always this glamorous. Now let's try to get "Meant To Be" out of your head as we take a deep dive into the untold truth of Bebe Rexha.

Bebe Rexha revealed she has bipolar disorder

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, an estimated 4.4 percent of adults in the United States are affected by bipolar disorder during their lives. The research organization describes it as "a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks."

In an April 2019 Twitter thread, Bebe Rexha revealed she was one of those adults. "For the longest time, I didn't understand why I felt so sick," she tweeted. "Why I felt lows that made me not want to leave my house or be around people and why I felt highs that wouldn't let me sleep, wouldn't let me stop working or creating music. Now I know why." The Grammy-nominated singer continued, "I'm bipolar and I'm not ashamed anymore. That is all. (Crying my eyes out.)" 

After sharing the personal news about her mental health, Rexha promised fans that she would "not [be] holding anything back" on her next album. "I don't want you to feel sorry for me," she tweeted. "I just want you to accept me. That's all. Love you."

Why she refuses to define her sexuality

In the summer of 2018, Bebe Rexha joined Rita Ora, Charli XCX, and Cardi B for the track, "Girls." While the song was meant to be a love letter to the LGBTQ+ community, it was instantly met with backlash over its problematic portrayal of bisexuality. While responding to the criticism, Rexha claimed to Entertainment Weekly that "people automatically went for the negative" without knowing if any of the women were indeed bisexual. "You don't know about my sexual orientation," she continued, "so I felt disrespected."

A year later, Rexha sat down with Health and talked further about the controversy surrounding the song: "You shouldn't just come at me because I look like I'm a girly girl and be like, 'How dare you make fun of lesbians or bi girls?' You don't know what my background is or what I've done or who I've made love to or what I consider myself."

She added that her sexuality is the "one thing" she keeps personal, but explained she considers herself "fluid" for a valid reason. "Until I find 'the one,' I can't just say what I am," Rexha said. "I just want to find someone I love and who loves me — and I don't care if that's a boy or a girl."

You better sing along with her

Performing for a crowd can be tough, especially when they're not particularly impressed or engaged. But you'd think that Bebe Rexha's "Meant To Be" collaboration with country group Florida Georgia Line — which spent a whopping fifty weeks on the Billboard Hot Country Songs chart — would be a definite crowd pleaser.

However, that wasn't the case at Spotify's pre-Grammy event in 2019. When the audience failed to sing along with the tune, Rexha stopped her performance and, well, threw a bit of a tantrum. "This song was No. 1 for fifty f**king weeks," Rexha told the crowd, adding, "I work too f**king hard for this bulls**t, OK?" The singer then looked over to her mom and said, "My mom is like, 'Please calm down' ... I love you mom. I'm calming down."

But she didn't stop there. "I worked too hard for this moment. I'm from Staten Island, N.Y., and I'm standing on this stage right here," Rexha said, before adding, "You're going to sing the f**king words if you know the f**king song." Tell 'em how you really feel, Bebe.

Bebe Rexha dropped serious cash on a house

Having a smash hit song pays off. Who knew? According to E! News, Bebe Rexha dropped a little over $2 million on a Hollywood Hills, Calif. villa in 2018 with a "French and Italian Riviera vibe" and complete with a "luxurious pool" and stunning views.

The master bedroom? It comes stacked with a "comfy reading nook, two walk-in closets," and a bathroom that boasts a "steam shower, soaker tub and heated floors." Meanwhile, the guest bedroom has its own kitchen and fireplace, folks. We assume Rexha won't be listing this room on Airbnb. 

The rest of the "designer-done" home is about as high-end as you'd expect. According to the real estate listing obtained and summarized by Variety, the exterior of the 2,580 square foot, 1930s, three-level house features ivy-covered walls and a "rustic brick courtyard." Also included? "Terraces for sunbathing or outdoor dining," as well as "an extra-tall hedgerow" to block the view of noisy neighbors. However, the most interesting room in the house is hands down its "mirror-walled bonus room."

She claims the music industry pressured her to 'starve'

During an interview with Cosmopolitan UK in September 2019, Bebe Rexha claimed that her record label immediately pressured her to lose weight after she signed. "Are you ready to get in boot-camp shape?" they allegedly asked her, reportedly wanting her to drop 20 pounds from her then-130 pound frame. 

"It f**ked me up. I was so cold all the time," Rexha told the media outlet. "I would starve myself before filming a music video." She went on to allege that a creative director forced her to work out two times a day and even watched her eat. "She'd sit opposite me at the dinner table and say, 'You're not losing enough,'" she added. "All I was eating was salad."

Rexha had previously opened up about the pressures she felt within the industry with Health, saying, "I went through a point of really not liking myself, and I still have my moments — but I just started trying to be nice to myself and doing things every day." This has included taking baby steps toward body positivity. "I walk around the house in just underwear and a bra," Rexha continued. "My therapist told me, 'You should walk around naked; it helps.' I'm like, 'I can't do that yet!'"

Bebe Rexha shut down plastic surgery rumors

Bebe Rexha emphatically shut down what she called "funny" plastic surgery rumors while speaking with Health in May 2019. "I've never had my butt done. I've never had my nose done," she began. "Actually, I have a deviated septum, and I keep getting sinus infections, and I'm scared to get that [fixed]. I'm scared to go under the knife — I don't want it to mess up my nose!"

That said, the singer went on to reveal that if she did get end up going under the knife, she'd have no problem admitting it: "If I got work done, I would definitely say it. I definitely want to get my boobs lifted one day. If it makes me feel better and sexy? I'm like, do whatever you want." The pop star was previously asked by Slam! in 2017 if there was one thing she'd like to change about her body. Her answer? Making her legs and butt smaller through working out. "Everybody thinks my a** is fake, but it's not," she said, adding, "I have a problem keeping it small, actually. It's just too big."

Hey, you do you, Bebe. 

Serena Williams inspired one of Rexha's songs

Bebe Rexha found inspiration for her 2019 female empowerment anthem, "You Can't Stop the Girl," in a not-so-surprising pop culture figure: tennis legend Serena Williams. "I actually wrote the song in the studio, and it was around the time when Serena Williams wore her tutu during one of her games," Rexha told Entertainment Tonight's Nischelle Turner, referencing Williams' outfit during 2018's U.S. Open. "It actually really inspired me because I was like, 'Wow... she is a bada**."

The powerful song eventually found its way on the Maleficent: Mistress of Evil soundtrack. After director Joachim Rønning heard the track, he knew it would be a perfect fit. "He asked me to watch the movie to see if I related to it, and I was like, 'OK, cool. I'm down to see it,'" Rexha explained. "And I watched it and I was blown away. I immediately told my team, I was like, 'I have to work this song into the movie!' And then we went in and we actually added an 80-piece orchestra."

Bebe Rexha's father might be a hater

While Bebe Rexha and her fans have embraced her body-positive message, it seems as though her dad, Flamur, unfortunately has not. In February 2019, the singer-songwriter shared a text she received from her father on an Instagram Story (captured by E! News), in which he called her "Last Hurrah" music video "stupid pornography." Ouch. 

"My dad hates me," Bebe sarcastically wrote with an accompanying screenshot of the text, complete with a face-palm emoji. Flamur's text read in full: "You better stop posting stupid pornography because you make me sick. I can't take this anymore, embarrassed to go in public everywhere I can go. I'm upset with you, I can't believe it." 

In a since-deleted tweet, Bebe asked her followers to not "say mean things" about her "amazing father." Noting that she regretted posting his message in the first place, she added, "I am upset that he still isn't speaking to me, but he is still my father." The pop star echoed this sentiment when TMZ later caught up with her at the airport. Saying that her father "might have said something a little heated in the moment," she admitted, "The video is a lot." Rexha added in response to her more "intense" fans, "I get him. I understand him ... Don't talk s**t about my dad, 'cause that's my father and he loves me."

Angelina Jolie is Rexha's 'forever #girlcrush'

While walking the red carpet for the premiere of Maleficent: Mistress of Evil outside the El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood in late September 2019, Bebe Rexha met her "[her] forever #Girlcrush": Angelina Jolie. "Anything [she] does I absolutely love," Rexha told Entertainment Tonight's Nischelle Turner at the event. "She's just always inspired me. She's kinda always been that bad a** chick [and] I feel like this role is perfect for her." Rexha added that she was "so starstruck" about meeting the iconic actress, saying, "She's amazing! I love her."

Meanwhile, the meeting itself was an absolute love fest. "You're so inspiring. Thank you so much," Rexha told Jolie as the pair hugged. "Thank you so much for letting me be a part of this." In response, Jolie said, "Your song ['You Can't Stop the Girl'] is beautiful. It's really, really beautiful." Jolie's kind words left Rexha overcome with emotion: "Thank you so much. Oh my God, you're real. I can't believe you're real. I'm going to cry." Aww!

Bebe Rexha called out a music exec who said she was 'too old'

Imagine being 29 and someone telling you you're too old. This is exactly what happened to Bebe Rexha. As she revealed on Instagram in August 2019, a music executive apparently told her that she was too old to be sexy. Um, okay. "I recently had a MALE music executive tell me that I was getting too old and that my brand was 'confusing,'" Rexha wrote. "Because... I'm a songwriter and I post sexy pics on my Instagram and that's not what female songwriters are suppose to do, especially for my age. I'm 29."

The singer's caption, which accompanied a black-and-white a mirror picture in which Rexha's wearing a bra and underwear, went on to rail against the sexism and ageism she's faced in the music industry. "I'm fed up with being put in a box. I make my own rules," she wrote. "I'm tired of women getting labeled as 'hags' when they get old and guys get labeled as sexy with age. Anyways, I'm turning 30 on August 30 and you know what, I'm not running away from it." 

You tell 'em, Bebe!