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Tuesday brought with it some new heat from journalist Zach Baron, this time focused on the latest chapter of the Justin Bieber story.

In the GQ cover piece, titled “The Redemption of Justin Bieber” and featuring Ryan McGinley photography, the Justice artist reflects on a lifetime in the spotlight and the indeed redemptive experience of marrying Hailey Baldwin.

“The first year of marriage was really tough,” Bieber said, “because there was a lot, going back to the trauma stuff. There was just lack of trust. There was all these things that you don’t want to admit to the person that you’re with, because it’s scary. You don’t want to scare them off by saying, ‘I’m scared.’”

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Image via Ryan McGinley/GQ

And while—in Bieber’s own words—his first year of marriage was spent “on eggshells,” it didn’t take him long to embrace newfound love.

“We’re just creating these moments for us as a couple, as a family, that we’re building these memories,” he told Baron. “And it’s beautiful that we have that to look forward to. Before, I didn’t have that to look forward to in my life. My home life was unstable. Like, my home life was not existing. I didn’t have a significant other. I didn’t have someone to love. I didn’t have someone to pour into. But now I have that.”

Elsewhere, Bieber noted he has always felt “compelled” to marry and said part of his calling was to “get married and have babies and do that whole thing.” He also shared some insight on his and Hailey’s future plans for building a family together.

“Not this second, but we will eventually,” he said.

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Image via Ryan McGinley/GQ

Friends and others in the extended Bieber universe are also quoted in the piece, including Chance the Rapper, who reflected on a period roughly five years ago in which the many-time collaborators were both struggling with the throes of limitless celebrity.

“We were both young,” Chance said, “with a lot of influence and a lot more money than somebody our age should probably have. And we were both living in L.A. and just kind of… I don’t even know how to describe it without making it sound bad.”

Bieber said in the new interview that drugs, at one time, “were a numbing agent” he used to “continue to get through.” He also mentioned a period in his life during which security guards would check his pulse to make sure he was still alive, a detail he previously disclosed back in 2019.

For the full GQ piece, which also includes some candid Bieber thoughts on a higher power and Chance’s designation of Jesus Christ as their “secret sauce,” click here

And below, catch an eight-minute tour bus walk-through from Bieber:

Justice, Bieber’s eighth No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 chart, returned to the top spot earlier this week. And earlier this month, Bieber and BTS—as well as Ariana Grande, Demi Lovato, and more—were brought together by way of the merger of South Korean entertainment lifestyle company HYBE and Scooter Braun’s Ithaca Holdings.

Tonight (April 13) at 7 p.m. ET, Bieber will stream a performance from Paris featuring first-time live looks at tracks from Justice, followed by an afterparty. It’ll all go down on YouTube: