Rihanna on Chris Brown: "I Needed That Wake-Up Call"

Celebrity Body Oct. 26, 2010 AT 5:17PM
Rihanna on Chris Brown: "I Needed That Wake-Up Call" Credit: Kevin Mazur/WireImage.com

More than a year after Chris Brown pled guilty to assaulting ex-girlfriend Rihanna in February 2009, the 22-year-old singer tells the December issue of Marie Claire UK that she doesn't regret the traumatic experience.

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"God has a crazy way of working, and sometimes when stuff happens you feel like, 'What did I do to deserve this?' Why was it backfiring on me?'" she recalls. "But I needed that wake-up call in my life. I needed a turning point, and that's what God was giving to me."

At the time, however, Rihanna says it was difficult to go through such a painful relationship in the public eye.

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"All this terrible stuff they say to you, it breaks you down," she says. "[But] once you're back on your feet -- if you ever make it back on your feet -- that's the ultimate achievement."

Still, she admits it wasn't easy to break up with Brown, 21, who later pled guilty to a felony and accepted a plea deal that included more than 1,400 hours of community labor in addition to five years probation.

So how did Rihanna finally find the strength to end the toxic relationship?

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"I remember I was in New York at the Trump Hotel and I woke up and I just knew I was over it. It was a different day. I felt different. I didn't feel lonely," she recalls. "I felt like I wanted to get up and be in the world. That was a great, great feeling."

And she hasn't looked back since.

"I feel like I smile for real this time. The smiles come from inside, and it exudes in everything I do," she says. "People feel my energy is different. When I smile they can tell that it's pure bliss and not just a cover up."

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