It's been over two years since Us Weekly first broke news of LeAnn Rimes' extramarital affair with Eddie Cibrian — eighty-sixing both of their marriages — and the country singer, 28, isn't afraid to own up to her mistakes.
"I know I didn't do it the right way," Rimes says of falling for her "Northern Lights" costar in "Backstory: LeAnn Rimes," a new special airing Sunday on the Great American Country channel.
"I didn't have the tools to know how to do it the right way, how to let go the right way. I'd never been taught that," she says of cheating on then-husband Dean Sheremet with Cibrian, who was then wed to Brandi Glanville, mother to his two sons. (She and Cibrian, 37, are now engaged; Sheremet is also engaged to girlfriend Sarah Silver.)
"I have the strength [now] but I didn't at the time… So, it got really messy, but I have learned a lot from that. And I'm not glad it happened, but I know why it did."
She adds: "[Country music] has such a double standard. You know, Willie Nelson and Johnny Cash and all these guys. God knows what they did back in the day? And if a woman did it, you never were accepted or forgiven. But if it was a guy, it was just their life… It's quite interesting to have to navigate those waters as a woman in this business."