We are still waiting on confirmation about Rihanna’s 8th album. It’s still not ready. And this cover shoot and interview may have been booked at a time when they all thought it would be ready by now. But that doesn’t take away from how open Rihanna is with the magazine in sharing what her life is now, or at least how she wants us to see her life now. I believe her though, because I’m not sure Rihanna ever gave us a reason to think she gives a sh-t what we think of her.

Unlike Beyonce who isn’t talking anymore, Rihanna seems open here to almost any question, especially personal questions. Even the question about Chris Brown. Why did she get back together with him:

“I was that girl,” she says, “that girl who felt that as much pain as this relationship is, maybe some people are built stronger than others. Maybe I’m one of those people built to handle shit like this. Maybe I’m the person who’s almost the guardian angel to this person, to be there when they’re not strong enough, when they’re not understanding the world, when they just need someone to encourage them in a positive way and say the right thing.” So, she thought she could change him? “A hundred percent. I was very protective of him. I felt that people didn’t understand him. Even after … But you know, you realize after a while that in that situation you’re the enemy. You want the best for them, but if you remind them of their failures, or if you remind them of bad moments in their life, or even if you say I’m willing to put up with something, they think less of you—because they know you don’t deserve what they’re going to give. And if you put up with it, maybe you are agreeing that you [deserve] this, and that’s when I finally had to say, ‘Uh-oh, I was stupid thinking I was built for this.’ Sometimes you just have to walk away.” Now, she says, “I don’t hate him. I will care about him until the day I die. We’re not friends, but it’s not like we’re enemies. We don’t have much of a relationship now.”

I don’t know that it gets any more honest than that from a celebrity interview. I also don’t know though if I believe that she hasn’t hooked up as much as we think she has. You’ll note though that there were no specifics. Not going to excerpt any more of it because I think you should read the article in its entirety. To me, what’s most interesting isn’t what she has to say about her romantic relationships but how those relationships are affected by her relationship to fame. Trust is already a fragile and elusive acquisition. Imagine how hard it is to trust in the age of Instagram and instant everything?

Click here for the full piece on Rihanna in Vanity Fair.