Bobby Brown Reveals Why Relationship With Janet Jackson Didn’t Last

Whitney Houston had no problem admitting that Bobby Brown was the love of her life, and vice versa. But according to Brown, he was quite the ladies’ man before their marriage. Aside from a fling with Madonna, Brown says he and Janet Jackson were an item for some time. In his forthcoming television special, Brown explains why the relationship between him and Jackson didn’t work. 

Bobby Brown poses for photo; Brown claims he dated Janet Jackson in the 1980s
Bobby Brown 1988 | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Bobby Brown first spoke of their alleged relationship in an interview before spilling details in his autobiography

Brown has been open about his love for Jackson since the late ‘80s. In a 1989 interview with BET’s Video Soul, he told Donnie Simpson about the Poetic Justice star, saying, “As you know I’m madly in love with her [Jackson] and can’t be with her.” He later expanded in his memoir Every Little Step, writing: 

I really fell for Ms. Jackson. I never usually fall for women that fast, but she was an exception. Maybe it had something to do with my childhood crush; or maybe it was because she was one of the finest and most sought-after women in the world at the time. I don’t know what it was, but she had me open!

Later in a BET miniseries that starred Woody McClain as Brown, the series shows him falling hard for Jackson (played by Cree David). Their alleged affair was short-lived, with Jackson being married to her second husband at the time while simultaneously being romantically involved with Brown.

The singer recently stated that his image is why they didn’t work out

Brown is now the subject of a 12-part A&E docuseries set to air. In the series, he details his infatuation for Jackson, explaining it began with him as a young boy. “I had a big crush on Janet. What was it about Janet? Everything. Her little smile, body, her dance moves, her little laugh,” he gushed. “We loved each other’s company. We didn’t have that long of a relationship.”

Source: YouTube

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According to Brown, the reason things went south was due to his bad-boy image. He was an alleged womanizer and also had run-ins with the law. Additionally, his performance style on stage wasn’t viewed as PG. He says Jackson’s overprotective father Joe Jackson would not approve of their relationship.

“But the reason me and Janet broke off was because she couldn’t be with a man like myself. I’m from the projects,” he claims. “I’m hood. And her father wouldn’t allow her to be with someone like me. Janet was the crush of my life.”

Janet Jackson has never confirmed Bobby Brown’s account of their relationship

Jackson has never addressed Brown’s claims. In fact, he was not mentioned in her two-part docuseries that aired on Lifetime and A&E in January 2022. She spoke openly about her first two marriages. In 1984, she married fellow singer James DeBarge. The marriage was annulled a year later due to DeBarge’s drug addiction. 

Within two years of the annulment, Jackson would marry filmmaker, René Elizondo, Jr. Their marriage was filled with creative collaboration, with him serving as a video director and co-writer of dozens of her songs and music videos. 

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