Lena Fayre is a singer and songwriter based in Los Angeles. Her catchy indie pop tracks have garnered upwards of 10 million streams on Spotify and nearly 7 million views on Youtube.
THE BIG HEARTBREAK
"He was another musician. It was an open relationship, so the lines of where the relationship began and ended were jumbled. I wasn’t prepared for that kind of a connection. It was absolute infatuation, a synthesis of personalities I had never experienced before. He broke up with me on a bench at Echo Park Lake. We never really held hands in public, but that night I made him hold my hand as he walked me home."
"Looking back it was kind of silly. Emotions in the present moment can be misleading. The grieving process of a breakup is essential. But, I think personal growth always occurs in retrospect. I look back now on him, and other relationships I’ve had since then, and can realize which qualities in the partnership worked or didn’t work for me. I’m still learning what qualities in another person help me be the best version of myself, but I’m pretty clear on what doesn’t work for me. Now I’m able to recognize when I have someone good in my life. That’s a great gift only awarded by heartbreak and tribulation."
WHAT SHE WOULD DO DIFFERENTLY
"I could have protected myself more if I had had a better sense of self-respect and self-love. Now, I have a reference point for those things that will hopefully prevent me from being so blind again. When the beginning of the end started in that relationship I had no tools to step back and build boundaries. I just continued pursuing a person who couldn’t be what I needed. Though there is something to be said for being dumb and in love, and experiencing tumultuous feelings of passion and regret, I’m more interested in pushing myself to be the best partner I can be. It all starts with self-love. I’m all about it. If I’m not the best version of myself, I can’t be good to you, and I will end up creating a double-edged sword of a mess."
"Oddly, I got really into curating my Instagram. I couldn’t stop posting photos of, for instance, a hand on a face, or a texture, or obscured body parts. Somehow having a creative façade of myself and really abruptly and intensely altering my online identity helped me distance myself from that relationship. For me, no exterior factor is going to remedy how I feel after a breakup, so I try to keep busy and creative and distracted."
"I need to stop looking at my partner’s exes on Instagram. Really, I need to stop. It’s bad. And then you get caught-- like, I got caught last night! He didn’t say anything, but he knew what he saw. We’re human! I want to emphasize that that was fucking human. Of course I want to make myself feel like shit and compare myself to whatever hot chick you used to get cozy with. Self-sabotage! It’s a weird insecurity issue that I’m working through. And what’s the answer? Self-love!"
ON STAYING FRIENDS
"I’m friends with my first ex. Just him. I saw him last week and he’s still with the girl he broke up with me for. Apparently they’re doing fine, and I’m happy for them. I still give him shit for dumping me when we hang out. Having an intimate relationship with someone and then backpedaling from there is weird and hard, but definitely possible."
"He and I totally disconnected at first. We split ways and peaced out. After a while, I stopped searching his name on Instagram and contributing to my own pity party. Then about six months later we started getting coffee and hanging out. I’m happy to have him in my life now. Something drew me to him at one point, and he was able to shape me as a person, so there must be some sort of relationship worth saving there. I avoid other exes because, well, sometimes people suck and you don’t need to talk to them ever again. Nothing wrong with that! You don’t have to be friends with all your exes and be super cordial to be an adult. Protect yourself!"
THE BIGGEST LOVE LESSON
"It’s so important to love yourself first. You have to take care of yourself to be in a position to love another person. It’s a big responsibility to take on someone else’s feelings and share a life. I see that as an honor and privilege. Most relationships I’ve been in have ended because either myself or the other person didn’t have a solid enough idea of who they were, what they wanted, or how to be a happy, healthy person."
HER FAVORITE SONGS
"I remember I received a breakup text in the middle of a work dinner. I instantly started sobbing when I drove away. I was speeding in Marina Del Rey smoking a cigarette and listening to “I Lied” by Nicki Minaj on straight-up repeat, for like an hour driving home. What the fuck? That’s not a song I’d go listen to right now, but it conveyed the emotion that I needed to hear. I find myself listening to really weird music when I’m in a damaged place."
TURNING REJECTION INTO MUSIC
"My last EP 'Is There Only One?' is organized in the same order it was written in. That boy had just dumped me by the lake. Music really served its purpose for me in that instance. I wrote and sang my way through a lot of emotions, and ended up pretty okay. The cover of the EP is a real Instagram photo my ex posted of his new girlfriend. It was just a stupidly surreal experience realizing I was dating a much older person who was dating another person who lived across the country, and he would rather be with her than me when I live 5 minutes from him. Fun! Rejection! Ahh. People want different things, and that’s fine. I got to have my own growing experience through my music, so I’m thankful for that."
KEEPING HER HEART OPEN
"I’ve done a lot of work on my heart, mind, and character to get to a place where I am content by myself. But my idea of happiness has always included another person. Any taste of love, no matter how small or fleeting is enough for me to hold out hope. Love is too sweet to be bitter."
"I’m staying busy with my music. Constantly flying back and worth to Virginia where I write and record. Long-distance: a new challenge for my relationship! I’m learning tons of new things about myself, and who I become when I’m totally fucking stupidly in love with an awesome person."