The COVID-19 pandemic was tough on couples, and that includes Ne-Yo and his wife.
At one point while quarantining, the couple found themselves "considering divorce," Ne-Yo said. But by having "really uncomfortable conversations," the two emerged stronger than ever.
"As a human being, it's just real difficult, especially with somebody that you love and you care for. You care about how they feel," he told hosts Justin Sylvester and Loni Love. "So, to tell them something about themself that they may not enjoy, it's hard to do that, on top of it being hard to hear about yourself."
Their relationship difficulties are at the center of his new song, "Don't Love Me," which he wrote during the pandemic. Calling the song an "open letter" to Crystal, Ne-Yo confessed that sometimes it's easier for him to express his feelings through music.
"It's very easy to be considerate and passionate and all these things via a song because that is literally three minutes of a lifetime," he said. "It's a whole other thing to be a husband to somebody and to deal with the ups and downs and black, white, and gray, of what love is in that aspect."
He continued, "It's different than what it is in a song. You know, the song is gonna give you the highlight reel of it, the best parts of it. But reality, it's not always pretty. The sun ain't always shining. But you need it to rain so you can appreciate when the sun comes back."
The pair celebrated their fresh start with a gorgeous, rose-filled vow renewal in April 2022. The do-over made up for their first wedding's many mishaps.
"She was nine months pregnant, so we didn't even really get to spend too much time at the reception because we wound up at the hospital," Ne-Yo said about their February 2016 wedding. "Our first dance was supposed to be to "I Only Have Eyes For You" from The Flamingos. They played "I Only Have Eyes For You" from Frank Sinatra. It was the wrong song."
At least this time the couple got to celebrate with their five kids: Madilyn, 11, Mason, 10, Schaffer Jr., 6, Roman, 3, and newest addition Isabella, who they welcomed in June 2021.
The music video for Ne-Yo's "Don't Love Me" is out now.