Camila Cabello’s ‘psychofreak’ Lyrics Reference Both Her Fifth Harmony and Shawn Mendes Break-Ups

·4 min read


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‘Twas a tale of two break-ups: In a song from her newly released album Familia, “Havana” singer Camila Cabello is addressing her separation from both her former band and her former beau. The third song on the record, the trippy electro-pop “psychofreak,” features Willow Smith (now infamous for her TikTok anthem “Meet Me At Our Spot”) and chronicles Cabello’s mental health struggles since her musical debut as a 15-year-old. But the song is also a not-so-subtle signal to her fans about the messy fallout of her personal and professional relationships.

In particular, the artist confirmed to Reuters that a line in “psychofreak”—“I don’t blame the girls for how it went down”—is about her breakup from the band Fifth Harmony in 2016. “That song is basically about anxiety and all of the different things that have made up, like, my journey with anxiety and starting off really young in the industry,” she told the outlet.

When the musical split was first announced in December 2016, the band’s official Twitter account was the first to release a statement, writing, “After 4 and a half years of being together, we have been informed via her representatives that Camila has decided to leave Fifth Harmony.” Less than three hours later, Cabello followed up with her own statement:

“i was shocked to read the statement the fifth harmony account posted without my knowing. the girls were aware of my feelings through the long, much needed conversations about the future that we had during tour. Saying they were just informed through my representatives that i was ‘leaving the group’ is simply not true. just like the other girls said in their statement about their plans, i had also planned to continue with my own solo endeavors in the new year but i did not intend to end things with fifth harmony this way. as sad as it is to see this chapter ending this way, i will continued to root them all on as individuals and as a group, i wish nothing but the best for them, all the success in the world and true happiness.”

The new song seems to reference these sticky dynamics while removing the target from her band members’ backs. But just as it addresses Fifth Harmony, so too does “psychofreak” contain subtle references to Cabello’s separation from boyfriend Shawn Mendes. After the two broke up in November 2021, the singer implied in an interview with Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1’s New Music Daily that the split was, at least partially, due to her mental health.

“My priorities have fluctuated and my focus has changed throughout my life,” she said. “Those years that we were dating, I don’t even feel like, even while I was writing this album, and even still now, I guess, my focus is really on, how can I be a well-rounded person?...How can me talking about these things help me build trust with people? How can I talk about the icky things that I haven’t talked about with anybody and then get it to a place where these people, because they’re like, ‘Oh yeah, I totally relate,’ can validate my own experience?”

In “psychofreak,” Cabello repeatedly references her distrust for people around her—especially romantic partners—singing, “Sometimes I don’t trust the way I feel...When we’re makin' love, I wanna be there / And I wanna feel you pullin’ my hair / And believe the words you say in my ear.”

This is far from the first time Cabello has opened up about her anxiety over the past few years. In another interview with People, she revealed that, when she first started making Familia, “I was cripplingly anxious and was in the worst mental health state ever.”

She later added, “For me it was, if this process doesn’t help me in feeling better, and if it’s not me being honest and vulnerable and unfiltered, I don’t really see how this is going to happen. That was my intention, was just to be myself, whatever that looked like at the time.”

Read the full lyrics to “psychofreak” below.

(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
Feelin’ like a psychofreak-freak-freak
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)

Feelin’ like a psychofreak sometimes
Tryna get connected, no Wi-Fi
Tell me that you love me, are you lying?
Give me lemonade, I give you limes
House in the hills is a house of cards
Blink and the fairytale falls apart
Sorry, didn’t mean to get so dark
Maybe I’m an alien, Earth is hard

Sometimes, I don’t trust the way I feel
On my Instagram talkin’
‘bout “I’m healed”
Worryin
if I still got sex appeal
Hopin that I dont drive off this hill
When were makin love, I wanna be there
And I wanna feel you pullin my hair
And believe the words you say in my ear
Gotta go outside, I need some air

I want to, want to, want to touch you
Want to touch you, but my fingertips are numb
I want to, want to, want to love you
Want to love you, but my chest is tightenin up
I want to, want to, want to feel like I can chill
Not have to leave this restaurant
Wish I could be like everyone
But Im not like anyone

Feelin like a psychofreak sometimes
Tryna get connected, no Wi-Fi
Tell me that you love me, are you lying?
Give me lemonade, I give you limes
House in the hills is a house of cards
Blink and the fairytale falls apart
Sorry, didnt mean to get so dark
Maybe Im an alien, Earth is hard

(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
Feelin like a psychofreak-freak-freak
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
Feelin like a psychofreak-freak-freak

Sorry, couldnt focus on the movie
Everybody says they miss the old me
I been on this ride since I was fifteen
I dont blame the girls for how it went down, down
Thinkin out loud
In the bathroom while my friends laugh on the couch
Wow, moments gone now
Know you wanna stay, but I think I gotta leave right now

I want to, want to, want to touch you
Want to touch you, but my fingertips are numb
I want to, want to, want to love you
Want to love you, but my chest is tightenin up
I want to, want to, want to feel like I can chill
Not have to leave this restaurant
Wish I could be like everyone
But Im not like anyone

Feelin like a psychofreak sometimes
Tryna get connected, no Wi-Fi
Tell me that you love me, are you lying?
Give me lemonade, I give you limes
House in the hills is a house of cards
Blink and the fairytale falls apart
Sorry, didnt mean to get so dark
Maybe Im an alien, Earth is hard

(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
Feelin like a psychofreak-freak-freak
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
Feelin like a psychofreak-freak-freak
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
A psychofreak
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)
(Pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-pa-ra)

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