According to Charlie Puth, the song was very much a case of art imitating life. The singer told Billboard
that he had a real life fling with Selena Gomez, which left him heartbroken, but inspired this track.
"It's about a particular moment in my life, when someone very close to me wanted the attention of somebody else," he explained coyly. "When I found that out and we ended it, I might have done some shady things too, and she might have asked me, 'How long has this been going on?'"
"I don't kiss and tell," Puth added, "but the only way a song like that can come across as real is if there's something else going on behind the scenes. And that's what was happening [with Gomez] Very short-lived, very small, but very impactful. And it really messed me up."
"I'm trying to put this the best way possible," he continued. "It wasn't like I was the only person on her mind. And I think I knew that going in - what I was getting myself into."
"You gather up a bunch of emotion with the life shovel, throw it in the life bucket, mix it up," Puth concluded. "And she evoked such good emotion on that song, it was a pleasure working with her. That's why I'm always happy to sing it, even though it came from a dark point in my life."
According to People
, Puth's memory is somewhat inaccurate and the romance never happened: A source told the site the pair "never dated."