All is not lost yet, but here's some friendly advice to Justin Bieber: Man up, kid. Man up fast.
We get that it can feel like the worst thing in the world when your ex starts dating someone new, even if you haven't even dated that person for months, if not years. Even if it's not a matter of the heart anymore, such a thing can still be super rough on the ego.
And we're talking from the perspective of people who have exes that the world couldn't care less about. When your ex is Selena Gomez and her new man, The Weeknd, is one of the hottest entertainers around, kinda like you only less pocked by scandal...
But that's all the more reason why it's time for Bieber to put on his big-boy pants.
Because while it's certainly understandable, throwing sub-shade just isn't a sustainable long-term option, especially if your resurgent Instagram account averages more than 1 million likes per post (i.e. People are paying attention).
There are the usual modes of publicly giving some bad news the brush-off—unfollowing the bearer of bad news, perhaps, or posting a super-cheerful photo of yourself having the best time ever, usually surrounded by your closest pals (because a bunch of random members of the opposite sex would be far too obvious).
But last month, Bieber right out of the gate called The Weeknd's music "wack" when TMZ pressed the issue after the first sighting of the "Can't Feel My Face" singer with Gomez.
And he apparently didn't see the error of his ways, because on Sunday he went on Instagram Live with some buddies and can be heard saying, "Favorite song at the moment...'Starboy' by The Weeknd," before erupting with exaggerated laughter. "Oh, s--t, that was funny," he squeals. "Aw, that was too funny."
Oh, so funny.
OK, so he's not in love with The Weeknd right now, but does Bieber—who has dated tons of women since he and Gomez broke up for what looked like that last time in 2014 (yup, three years ago)—really want to be 22 going on 12?
While he's never been one to let Selena Gomez really get away, as in leave her the heck alone so she could put the past behind her once and for all, she didn't seem all that interested in moving on for a good long while, either. And neither has been in another, for all intents and purposes, serious relationship since their off-and-on romance with each other.
First love is hard to beat right away, after all.
Yet Selena and The Weeknd, whose real name is Abel Tesfaye, are most definitely dating. She wasn't his date at the Grammys Sunday, but they met up at Rihanna's after-party—right around the time Bieber was practicing his stand-up on Instagram Live. (He was nominated for four Grammys, including Album of the Year, but chose not to attend.)
And according to TMZ, Gomez picked up the tab for her beau's 27th birthday party last night, even though she was already in New York for Fashion Week.
So this just might be serious, and Justin Bieber would do well to deal with it, and we have some advice.
For starters, STFU. Maintain complete silence on the subject. Don't post anything on social media, no matter how thickly veiled, and, don't go starting stuff. If you and your friends are going to have some laughs, don't record it.
Next, when the inevitable impertinent questions about Seleeknd are thrown at you when you're grabbing lunch or pumping gas, you say, "I wish them nothing but the best," no matter how much you don't mean it.
Perhaps if you say it enough, you'll start to mean it.
And if you're having a more civilized sit-down and you're asked about your feelings, take a cue from The Weeknd's ex, Bella Hadid, and choose honesty. "It was my first breakup...so public," the 20-year-old model told Teen Vogue in a recent interview about breaking up with the artist after dating off and on for about a year and a half.
"As an outsider, you might think I handled it so well, but it's always in your heart, and you always feel it very heavily."
Wouldn't you like people to say that about you, Justin? How you're handling Selena's new relationship so well?
In fact, our next bit of advice is this: Actually be happy for Selena.
You've both been through a lot, you had some good times together, but if you love her, as you say you always will...
Set her free.
If there's anything for you two in the future, that will work itself out. Best you not go backwards in a way that would only defeat the purpose.
As Bella Hadid said, "Love hurts, but you have to pull through."