"I don't want to put anyone in a position where they feel like I'm only theirs, only to be hurt in the end," the 21-year-old star tells GQ in its March issue. "Right now in my life, I don't want to be held down by anything. I already have a lot that I have to commit to. A lot of responsibilities. I don't want to feel like the girl I love is an added responsibility. I know that in the past I've hurt people and said things that I didn't mean to make them happy in the moment."
In the cover story (the inside photos feature a shirtless Bieber, of course), the "Love Yourself" singer reveals that his rumored girlfriend Hailey Baldwin, 19, is "someone I really love. We spend a lot of time together."
But the duo are not on the fast track. "What if Hailey ends up being the girl I'm gonna marry, right? If I rush into anything, if I damage her, then it's always gonna be damaged. It's really hard to fix wounds like that. It's so hard ... I just don't want to hurt her."
As it turns out, Baldwin is on the same page. "We are not an exclusive couple," she shared with E! at the 2016 amfAR New York Gala on Wednesday. "He's about to go on tour. Relationships at this age are already complicated, but I don't really like to talk about it because it's between me and him."
Eric Ray Davidson
She declined to elaborate, saying, "Honestly, the rest of the GQ article comes out tomorrow."
Part of what influences Bieber to be cautious with Baldwin: his "bad" breakup with Selena Gomez, 23. "We don't talk often, but we're cordial," Bieber says of his former love. "If she needs something, I'm there for her. If I need something, she's there for me."
Bieber admits the split inspired "a lot" of songs on his hit 2015 album Purpose. One of those songs might be his smash "Sorry," which has been misconstrued as an apology for his past stumbles. "People ran with that ... That I was like, apologizing with that song and stuff. It really had nothing to do with that ... It was about a girl."
Eric Ray Davidson
The far-ranging piece also touches on Bieber's anxiety, which he suggests was exacerbated by taking his prescription for Adderall, a medication that treats ADHD. "This is my first day off Adderall," he shares with GQ, adding that he felt "fine" and was using "natural sleep aids" his doctor's office provided. "I've been getting a lot of anxiety, and they think it's stemming from the Adderall. That's why I've stopped taking it. Or else I wouldn't stop, because I really enjoy it."
While Bieber owns up to making some bad decisions in the last few years, the singer doesn't regret too many of them.
"Everyone when they start growing up realizes, 'Man, I did some dumb s--- when I was younger," he explains. "It's not just me ... If I could go back I wouldn't really change much."