With Taylor Swift once again bringing John Mayer’s name to a fresh news cycle, which many assume he will address when his “Call Her Daddy” interview drops, fans may naturally find themselves delving into Mayer’s alleged history of toxic behavior in relationships.
Specifically, many may wonder what exactly happened between Mayer and Jessica Simpson.
Allow us to fill you in…
Back in 2010, John Mayer’s interview with Playboy created an uproar when he discussed his relationship with Jessica Simpson, whom he dated from 2006-2007.
While asked about the paparazzi stalking him and turning him into “a tabloid fixture” when the two were dating, he revealed that he was, in his words, “addicted” to Simpson.
“It wasn’t as direct as me saying, ‘I now make the choice to bring the paparazzi into my life.’ I really said, ‘I now make the choice to sleep with Jessica Simpson.’ That was stronger than my desire to stay out of the paparazzi’s eye. That girl, for me, is a drug. And drugs aren’t good for you if you do lots of them. Yeah, that girl is like crack cocaine to me. .. Sexually it was crazy. That’s all I’ll say. It was like napalm, sexual napalm,” he said.
What is sexual napalm, you might ask?
Well, Mayer seems to further define the by going on to talk about how being sexually addicted to a person is akin to being physically addicted to a specific drug.
At one point, you would sell your couch, my couch, and anything else for another go at her, if that was what was required.
You go through withdrawal pangs when you’re apart, and crave a very specific and very visceral high. Perhaps your brain makes physical changes and those changes can be accessed at a later date by a trigger smell, taste, sound, or memory.
The term “napalm” generally brings to mind the following: “horrible, sticky burning,” “deforestation,” “scorched Earth,” and “Charlie.” Rarely does it bring to mind reminiscence or maudlin feelings towards past sexcapades.
But the idea of being metaphorically burned by a sexual relationship, in a not entirely negative way, does resonate.
Think of your first wildly sexual relationship, especially if the other person was unbelievably eager to please.
Now try and remember: Did that relationship really consist of much more than sleeping, eating, and having sex? Did it have no future, but you just didn’t know how to end it?
“Napalm” may not be the best word to describe such a situation, but it’s not 100 percent inapt.
Now, while Mayer may have rejoiced in telling the world that he had an “addiction” to Jessica Simpson, she was noticeably displeased at the time.
Speaking to Oprah, Simpson said, “I tried to read the article and I was so… I was so disappointed in him… It made me so sad. And it was really discouraging because that’s not the John that I knew. “
It took her another 10 years before Simpson finally revealed her side of the story.
Simpson’s memoir, “Open Book,” was released on February 4, 2020. In it, she reveals some incredibly shocking tidbits.
Not only does she discuss her abuse as a child, but she opened up about her toxic relationship with Mayer and how that influence led her to drinking and drugs.
After her divorce from Nick Lachey in 2005, she began dating other men, and Mayer began writing her notes.
However, according to Simpson, “[Mayer] wanted to have all of me or nothing… He’d walk into a room and pick up his guitar and you’d swoon. I didn’t really know the man behind the guitar. And that was my mission.”
When they began dating in 2006, she “fell in love with his intensity,” adding, “Again and again, he told me he was obsessed with me, sexually and emotionally.”
Simpson says she began to feel insecure with Mayer, noting that while the two broke up many times, making a final break wasn’t easy.
In a recent interview with Hoda Kotb for the Today show, Simpson revealed that she went back to Mayer a whopping nine times!
Simpson attributes her spiral into drinking and drugs at least in part to her fear of losing Mayer and the feelings of insecurity she developed during their relationship.
“My anxiety would spike and I would pour another drink. It was the start of me relying on alcohol to mask my nerves,” she revealed.
She says much of her anxiety began when she was sexually abused as a child, and she chose substances to numb that pain.
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Fortunately, Simpson’s memoir details the uplifting journey she has taken to get where she is today.
She added, “[Mayer] loved me in the way that he could, and I loved that love for a very long time. Too long. And I went back and forth with it for a long time. But it did control me.”
After Mayer’s Playboy interview, Simpson cut all contact with him.
“He thought that was what I wanted to be called. I was floored and embarrassed that my grandmother was actually gonna read that… A woman and how they are in bed is not something that is ever talked about. It was shocking… He was the most loyal person on the planet and when I read that he wasn’t, that was it for me. I erased his number. He made it easy for me to walk away.”
Mayer shared his take on Simpson’s book, telling Bravo’s Andy Cohen that he will probably never read it.
“I heard about it. I heard some things,” Mayer said. “But as Pee Wee Herman says in ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure’ before the movie of his life is about to play out at the end, he’s not watching the movie and the reason he’s not watching the movie, he says, ‘I don’ t have to watch it Dottie, I lived it.’ I think that’s prescient here.”
It’s been about a decade and a half since the exes dated, and Simpson has a life and family of her own.
Simpson is married to football player Eric Johnson, whom she married in 2014. They have three children.
Tom Miller is a writer and performer based in Los Angeles. He’s been a mechanical engineer and a banker, and is now the general manager and coordinating video producer at YourTango.