There's the Rihanna you're used to seeing in the media, and then there's the actual Rihanna. Spoiler alert: They're not the same person.
The 27-year-old star opened up about a number of topics during her interview with Vanity Fair for its November issue, including (but not limited to) trying to date in the spotlight, choosing not to have casual sex and dealing with the aftermath of the infamous Chris Brown assault in 2009, which also resulted in a makeup and then final breakup.
"I was that girl," she tells the mag, "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 s--t 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."
RiRi admits that part of the reason she got back with Breezy after the assault was because 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."
She continues, "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, Rihanna explains, "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."
The young celeb shares that Brown was her last actual boyfriend, and while it's no secret that she can get any guy she wants, Rihanna says she's just not into hooking up without there being any substance.
"If I wanted to [just have sex for fun] I would completely do that,"she says. "I am going to do what makes me feel happy, what I feel like doing. But that would be empty for me; that to me is a hollow move. I would wake up the next day feeling like s--t.
"When you love somebody, that's different," she continues. "Even if you don't love them per se, when you care enough about somebody and you know that they care about you, then you know they don't disrespect you. And it's about my own respect for myself."
The Barbados beauty gets into the dynamic of dating these days, as well, noting that men are afraid to be chivalrous because they seem "too soft" in front of their guys, and she's not going to settle for a guy that has that misconception of being a man.
"That's why I haven't been having sex or even really seeing anybody," she says, "because I don't want to wake up the next day feeling guilty. I mean I get horny, I'm human, I'm a woman, I want to have sex. But what am I going to do—just find the first random cute dude that I think is going to be a great ride for the night and then tomorrow I wake up feeling empty and hollow? He has a great story and I'm like...what am I doing? I can't do it to myself. I cannot. It has a little bit to do with fame and a lot to do with the woman that I am. And that saves me."
Regardless, Rihanna is hopeful that she will find the right guy, when it's the right time. And right now is not the right time.
She tells the mag that the man she ends up with will be a "very extraordinary gentleman, with a lot of patience, will come along when I least expect it. And I don't want it right now. I can't really be everything for someone. This is my reality right now."