SZA is arguably the biggest R&B artist in the world, having released her sophomore album SOS, which has spent the last three weeks atop the Billboard Hot 200. Despite her meteoric popularity, SZA revealed that hasn’t always been the case.

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SZA revealed in a recent interview with People magazine that she called her high school experience “shitty” and was bullied because of her “awkwardness.”

“I was bullied because I wasn’t quiet and I was awkward at the same time,” the SZA said. “I wasn’t this tiny sad victim, but I was more so attacked just because it was giving ‘What is wrong with you?’ energy.”


However, she said that her frequent bullying inspired who she is today. “I always thought, ‘Oh my God.’ I’ll never have the approval of anyone in life, this must be my defining factor, this must be the bottom line.”

“I realized that all the things that made me feel so lame were actually what made me into who I am. It’s like, I didn’t go to prom because I didn’t have any friends and I had no one to go to prom with … [and now] it’s so weird that my life turned into [having] a bodyguard while traveling to parties.”

She continued, “all these things, if I had such a fulfilling existence and experience in high school, I would’ve felt validated to the point where I didn’t need to do anymore. [So] I just had to do more, I had to be more because I was like, ‘This shitty experience can’t be the end of it because if it is, I am cooked.'”

Those who bullied SZA in high school are probably punching the air right now. The 33-year-old singer’s sophomore album SOS sold 318,000 copies in its first week, making it the biggest R&B release of 2022. Her SOS tour was also announced, and tickets went on sale in mid-December and quickly sold out.

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