‘Break Up With Your Girlfriend, I’m Bored’ Is Queer baiting or a Self-Love Anthem?
Ariana Grande, the pop queen has released a music video for her new song Break Up with your girlfriend, I’m bored. It has sparked a flurry of debates over the subject matter of the music video and lyrics. Some say it’s a continuation of the self-love message the pop singer started in “thank u, next”, but some accuse her of queer baiting to get more views. Queer baiting is when a show or a music video hints at a LGBTQ relationship but never gives it fully.
Why People Think Ariana Grande is Queer Baiting
The music video of Break Up with your girlfriend, I’m bored starts off with Ariana Grande spotting a couple in the bar starring Charles Melton and Ariel Yasmine. As the name suggests, Ariana wants the couple to break up because she seems to be interested in one of them. Of course, knowing Ariana Grande is straight due to past relationships we assume she’s interested in the boyfriend. But as the music video goes on, Ariana Grande ends up showing interest in the girlfriend played by Ariel Yasmine. The end scene shows them about to make out when the music video stops.
Fans are calling out Ariana Grande on what they call queer baiting. It’s a tool pop stars or show producers use to hint at LGBTQ relationships just to get people talking. The music video of Break Up with your girlfriend, I’m bored is riddled with hints of gay elements but they are not fully explored. Furthermore, Ariana Grande is actually straight. So, her using this fantasy of a straight girl kissing another straight girl just to get people more interested is what infuriates the LGBTQ community.
#ArianaGrande is queerbaiting & using the aesthetic of LGBT intimacy for no reason other than shock value/clicks. Trying to justify it as “representing self-love” is disrespectful to ACTUAL WLW- they don’t have the privilege to benefit while also avoiding the stigma/oppression. pic.twitter.com/XDZ0wZvxB9
— Appropriana (Culture Vulture & Blackfishing) (@appropriana) February 8, 2019
dear ariana grande,
perpetuating stereotypes about bi people and queerbaiting on top of that doesn’t make you a good ally. you’re STILL making bisexuality look like a “concept” and portraying wlw in a song that sounds like it’s about cheating does not help us at all.
— v (@loonathecommie) February 8, 2019
Even if it was to make bisexuality mainstream, Ariana Grande seems to fall short by adding in themes of cheating. The female singer is urging the couple to break up just because she is bored. That’s not a good enough of a reason to ruin someone’s relationship.
Some say that the pop singer had an interesting point to convey yet she didn’t execute it in the most appropriate of ways.
the queerbaiting in Ariana Grande's new music video is kinda disappointing, but the defensive reaction from her stans does deserve a coherent response imo. I do think Ari had a clever point to make, she just did it in the worst possible way.
— Liam T // Trans Rights (@liam_theo1) February 8, 2019
Was it Just a Continuation of thank u, next’s mantra of Self-Love
The empowering message of thank u, next garnered a lot of positive attention for Ariana Grande. It was the anthem of self-love in 2018 where fans were loving the hopeful message. Especially after the pains Ariana Grande went through in her personal life, with the split from Pete Davidson and ex-boyfriend Mac Miller dying; everyone was glad to see that singer found a way to heal. In fact, she shared the wonderful message of healing to her followers through the song thank u, next.
Some fans seem to think that Break Up with your girlfriend, I’m bored is simply a continuation of that. They highlight the fact that the boyfriend represented in the music video is actually her own, and the girlfriend she wants him to break up with is herself. Essentially, she wants to break up with her boyfriend and fall in love with herself. That explains why the girlfriend is similar in appearance to Ariana Grande.
so the “girlfriend” in the break up with your girlfriend, im bored resembles ariana so much even down to the moon tattoo behind her ear, the hair clip. the girlfriend is ariana. she’s breaking up with her boyfriend and loving herself. #thankunext pic.twitter.com/vfb9Lv6tMo
— mia (@onelovesbutera) February 8, 2019
Though, some are adamant to think that despite the message of self-love, Ariana still used the methods of queer baiting.
if ariana grande was trying to promote self-love with that song, then she should’ve gone about it in a way that wasn’t queerbaiting. as a straight woman, ariana wouldn’t suffer consequences of kissing women that queer women are discriminated against. she used wlw as an aesthetic.
— 𝐣𝐮𝐚𝐧𝐢𝐭𝐚⁶ (@toduvuki) February 8, 2019
Ariana Grande has not made a comment on this controversy as of yet. Seems like she has to battle one controversy over the next in 2019. Recently, rappers accused her for stealing their content for her song 7 rings. And the pop singer has reportedly left The Grammy Awards ceremony due to a beef with the show’s producers.