What's The Real Meaning Of Psychofreak By Camila Cabello And Willow Smith? Here's What We Think

Camilla Cabelo and Willow Smith's ode to anxiety "psychofreak" has garnered a ton of attention since its release, but a reference to the band that catapulted Cabello to superstardom might cause many to overlook just how powerful the song really is.

Just days after "psychofreak" hit the airwaves, Billboard reported that the single had come out tops in their weekly new music poll. Given the incredible early response, it only makes sense that there is considerable talk about the song, and one line, in particular, has stood out. "I been on this ride since I was fifteen / I don't blame the girls for how it went down," Cabello sings. The "Havana" singer has since confirmed to Reuters that the line does indeed refer to Cabello's experience with her former band, Fifth Harmony. However, she's also pointed out that the song deals with the anxiety she's dealt with throughout her life.

The song details "all of the different things that have made up ... my journey with anxiety and starting off really young in the industry," she explained to Reuters. "Psychofreak" may touch on how Fifth Harmony played into that, but at its core, the song deals with all forms of anxiety, and the feelings of detachment that often go along with it.

Camila Cabello feels detached on Psychofreak

As many listeners have pointed out on social media, much of "psychofreak" describes anxiety to a tee. After opening to the haunting harmony by Willow Smith, Cabello begins with the chorus: "Feelin' like a psychofreak sometimes / Tryna get connected, no WiFi / Tell me that you love me, are you lying," adding, "House in the hills is a house of cards / blink and the fairytale falls apart."

According to Verywell Mind, disassociation is a common symptom of anxiety, and is a tool the mind uses to prevent feelings of overwhelm. Cabello's assertions that no matter how hard she tries to connect, there's "no WiFi" speaks directly to this aspect of the mental disorder. As for her questioning if she's truly loved or if the "fairytale" life she leads is really real, that speaks to her experiencing imposter syndrome, which is also often part and parcel with anxiety. Per Healthline, imposter syndrome isn't always linked to anxiety, but it often is — and when someone experiences the former, it can "worsen mental health symptoms, creating a cycle that's difficult to escape." 

Given the meaning behind the chorus alone — the entire song is an ode to the thoughts running through Cabello's and Smith's minds — it's unsurprising that so many fans have related to the song. One listener on YouTube commented, "thanks for making a song about people like us with anxiety can fully resonate with."

Camila Cabello and Willow Smith have spoken out about anxiety

"Psychofreak" offers listeners a glimpse into the anxiety faced by both Camila Cabello and Willow Smith, but this isn't the first time either singer has opened up about their mental health struggles. Cabello has been vocal about dealing with both anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder. In 2021, she revealed on Instagram in 2021 that she's considered quitting her career at times in order to safeguard her mental health. 

Likewise, Smith has also been candid about her struggles. She dives into her experience with anxiety on the pre-chorus, singing, "want to feel like I can chill / Not have to leave this restaurant / Wish I could be like everyone / But I'm not like anyone." In January 2022, Smith told The Independent that she dealt with anxiety attacks in her younger years, and that she'd been led to believe her attacks were simply her "being a brat." 

Smith has since gone on to advocate for mental health treatment, and in 2020, she and boyfriend and "The Anxiety" collaborator, Tyler Cole acted out various types of anxiety in a glass box in an LA art exhibit. This was intended to promote their album, but, per CNN, the two used the performance art to raise funds for mental health organizations. With "psychofreak" following in a similar vein, it's clear both Cabello and Smith are on a mission to shine a spotlight on mental health — and we're here for it! 

If you or someone you know is struggling with mental health, please contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741741, call the National Alliance on Mental Illness helpline at 1-800-950-NAMI (6264), or visit the National Institute of Mental Health website.