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The real catch is we’re not done talking about how Jonathan Owens didn’t know who Simone Biles was when they matched on Raya — thanks to a new Vanity Fair cover story on Biles unveiled today.

Simone Biles for Vanity Fair

Source: Adrienne Racquel / Vanity Fair

In a wide-ranging interview with contributing editor Leah Faye Cooper, Biles discusses the highs and lows of her gymnastics career, dealing with criticism and mental health, her marriage to Jonathan Owens, and whether she sees a return to the Olympics in her future.

We’re sharing a few key highlights — including info most of us already are super familiar with thanks to all of the internet outrage following the couples’ appearance on The Pivot podcast last month.

The couple briefly revisited for VF how they met and how Owens wasn’t aware of Biles’ accomplishments prior to their Raya connection.

“I had just broken up [with someone] and my friend was like, ‘Get on Raya, get on Raya,’ ” Biles tells Vanity Fair. “My guard went straight up when she said dating site.” But she matched with Jonathan Owens her first week on the app. “The second week I met him in person, and the rest is history. We were hooked,” Biles tells Vanity Fair.

Owens adds: “She doesn’t like to admit it, but she messaged me first.” On whether he knew he was falling for the greatest gymnast of all time? “A lot of people don’t believe me when I say I had no clue,” Owens tells Vanity Fair.

Biles also spoke with VF about how wishes she could spend more time with husband, Jonathan Owens.

“If I’m going to be honest, obviously he’s very fine,” Biles says of her initial attraction to Owens. “[But] besides his looks, he was so sweet and kind, and I think what I liked about him was his confidence. He truly believes he’s the best at everything,” she says, clearly amused. “I’ve never had so much fun in my life,” Biles says of their wedding. “I was 19 when I won my first Olympics, and I was like, How am I supposed to top this? My wedding topped it. It was the greatest feeling ever.” After the wedding, Owens flew to Green Bay to officially join the Packers. “I cried a lot,” Biles said, adding that while she knows they can handle the distance, she wishes she could spend more time with her husband. “We’re both so busy, so it’s not like I’m sitting [around] waiting for him to come home, but it’s just hard.”

Biles’ marriage isn’t the main focus of the article, of course — but we do get some juicy little details like how their wedding only included 144 guests, and that Jordan Chiles, who also goes on the record for the cover story, was one of those in attendance.

Aly Raisman is another fellow gymnast who spoke to VF for the story. She plays an important part in Biles’ life — having been one of her original inspirations as well as a fellow survivor of Larry Nassar’s abuse.

“I just wanted to try to do college gymnastics,” Biles says, but everything changed after she watched Gabby Douglas, McKayla Maroney, Aly Raisman, Kyla Ross, and Jordyn Wieber dominate at the 2012 Olympics in London. “I saw those girls and I was like, I’m going to the same camps they’re going to; maybe I could do that.”

Simone Biles for Vanity Fair

Source: Adrienne Racquel / Vanity Fair

Biles also really offers a greater insight into her anxiety and mental health journey, particularly how fame has affected her.

“I think everyone wants to be famous, and then when it happens, you almost hit a wall and you have an identity crisis. You’re like, Am I made out for this? Why did I wish for this?” She adds, “I’m not saying that [people] scream and line up like I’m Taylor Swift, [but] I still get a lot of attention. When five people come up to me and they’re rushing for a photo, I just get a little flustered. My anxiety kicks in.”

In addition to the anxiety, Biles also addresses what happened after she decided to discontinue competition in the Tokyo Olympics.

“I wish I could sit here and tell you it was glorious,” Biles says of her time off following the Tokyo Olympics. “When I took a break after 2016, I had the time of my life. I was doing anything and everything. But after 2020, it was kind of depressing until I started therapy and got help. I felt like a failure. Even though I was empowering so many people and speaking out about mental health, every time I talked about my experience in Tokyo—because it obviously didn’t go the way that I had planned—it stung a little bit. But all in all, it was the best decision.” Biles remains a vocal proponent of mental health care. “I’ve always been in therapy [and] I’ve always been an advocate for medicine,” she says. Years ago Biles was prescribed Lexapro for anxiety, and she continues to take the medication today.

While she’s been open about her journey, Biles says she doesn’t want to be be put on a pedestal as a mental health advocate.

“I was not okay with that. If I can be a lending hand and help people, then I’ll be open, honest, and vulnerable,” she continues, “but you cannot stick me in front of a crowd and say, ‘Do everything she’s doing.’ ”

And in what will likely be the biggest shock to fans of Biles, she’s not promising a return for the Paris Olympics.

“If I don’t make it to Paris, it won’t absolutely crush me,” she tells Vanity Fair. So nothing definitive? “Correct,” says Biles.

What do you think of Biles revelations? What was your biggest takeaway? Biles and Owens have been publicly talking about how he didn’t know who she was when they met for YEARS — and it still somehow continues to be controversial.

Read the full story on Vanity Fair HERE.


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