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Ne-Yo and wife Crystal Smith's relationship timeline, in their own words

After six years of marriage, two weddings and three children, Smith called out the singer for allegedly being unfaithful.
Ne-Yo's wife Crystal Renay Smith in a social media post accused the rapper of being unfaithful for eight years.
Ne-Yo's wife Crystal Renay Smith in a social media post accused the rapper of being unfaithful for eight years.Robin L. Marshall / Getty Images

After eight years together, Crystal Renay Smith called out husband Ne-Yo, whose real name is Shaffer Chimere Smith, out Instagram, and alleged that he had been unfaithful to her.

“To say I’m heartbroken is an understatement. To ask me to stay and accept it is absolutely insane," Smith, who shares three children with the singer, wrote in the July 31 post. "I gained 3 beautiful children out of this but nothing else but wasted years and heartache."

"I choose me, I choose my happiness and health and my respect," she added.

Ne-Yo, who “liked” her post, responded on Twitter later that day, saying he and his family will work through the “challenges behind closed doors."

Smith filed for divorce in August.

For some context into the lead-up of this moment, read on for a timeline of Ne-Yo and Smith's relationship, and what they have said about each other and their children.

IMAGE: Crystal Renay and Ne-Yo attend Von Smith's birthday celebration on June 9, 2015, in New York City.
Crystal Renay and Ne-Yo at his birthday party in 2015.Johnny Nunez / Getty

They met in 2015 and it was 'strictly business' at first

In 2015, Smith and Ne-Yo met when he was creating his sixth studio album, "Non-Fiction," and Smith auditioned to be in one of his music videos.

“Our meeting was initially strictly business, and I had planned on shooting a short film with the album,” Ne-Yo told People in a 2020 interview timed to their wedding. “We met at a restaurant, but she showed up two hours late. She explained later why that was: She was just trying to get some info on me: who I was, if it was really going to be a business meeting or if I was some creep.”

However, when they started talking, Ne-Yo forgot all about her tardiness.

"We just hit it off, more than I think either one of us expected,” he told People. “After a couple hours of just hanging out, talking, things got a little more personal: We started getting to know each other.”

Image: NE-YO and Crystal Renay attend R&B Wednesdays at Medusa Lounge on November 11, 2020 in Atlanta.
Ne-Yo and Crystal Renay in 2020.Prince Williams / WireImage

Ne-Yo told Essence in October 2020 that he asked Smith, during their first conversation, to tell him her "track record." He said, “I need to know that I can handle all the stuff that I’m not aware of. I need to know every reason that a man has ever left you or anything that you feel like a man will leave you for."

After that conversation, "the air in the room got lighter so to speak, and we didn’t feel like we had to work as hard to impress each other," Ne-Yo told Essence.

Ne-Yo said he know Smith was 'the one' early on

Ne-Yo told People that he “kinda knew right away” that Smith was the one. Two weeks after their business meeting, he and Smith started dating.

“I was fighting it because when we met, I had been single for about a year and a half, and I was enjoying being single. I’m not normally the kind of guy to jump into a relationship quickly,” he said.

But according to the "So Sick" singer, Smith “threw a wrench in all my singleness.”

“From that first encounter, I knew there was something different about her, something special," he added.

Ne-Yo and Smith got engaged and expected their first child in 2015

After less than a year of dating, Ne-Yo announced that he and Smith got engaged and were expecting a child together in a Twitter post.

While speaking with People, Smith said that the proposal happened after they celebrated his album's release and it was actually a "kind of funny" moment.

“We were in the hotel room, and we were talking: ‘I love you, I can’t live without you,’ that kind of thing. And I was just like, ‘Well, why don’t you f—ing marry me, then?’ and he was like, ‘I don’t have a ring,’ and I was like, ‘Do I look like the type of girl that needs a ring to get proposed to?’” she recalled herself saying.

So, “He got down on his knees, and I was like, ‘Don’t f*** this up!’" Smith continued. "And then he proposed, and we’ve been on our way to marriage ever since then. it was great; it was amazing.”

Ne-Yo and Smith got married and had a child in 2016

In February 2016, Ne-Yo and Smith got married in a Los Angeles wedding one month before they welcomed their son, Shaffer Chimere Smith Jr, per E! News.

The “Miss Independent” singer is also a dad to his 11-year-old daughter, Madilyn, and his 10-year-old son, Mason, whom he shares with his former partner Monyetta Shaw.

The duo tied the knot in a gorgeous venue that overlooked the Pacific Ocean. They told People that they wanted to do that so they could have the "feel of a destination without the travel.”

“We can’t wait to start our life together,” Ne-Yo said. “We’re looking forward to just being each others’ best friend.”

Smith and Ne-Yo welcomed their second child in 2018

In June 2018, Ne-Yo and Smith welcomed their second child, Roman Alexander-Raj Smith, per People.

When Smith announced their son's arrival on Instagram, she said that it didn't happen the way that she thought it would.

"A routine doctors visit on Thursday and I was rushed straight to the hospital and into surgery less than a hour later! Roman wasn’t doing well in my womb and had to be taken immediately or the doctors feared the worst,” Smith continued.

In March 2020, Ne-Yo filed for divorce from Smith. He talked about their marriage problems in a February 2020 appearance on the podcast, "Private Talk With Alexis Texas."

“It’s slowly but surely becoming public knowledge that myself and my wife have decided to go ahead and get a divorce,” he said at the time, per E! News. “It’s not a sad thing, it’s more of a us realizing- long story short, I’m never gonna talk bad about her. I’m not that person. There’s nothing bad to say about her. She’s a fantastic woman. She’s the mother of my children and she’s always gonna be that and I will always respect her.”

But they got back together

During a joint appearance on "Tamron Hall" in Nov. 2020, Ne-Yo and Smith spoke about how their marriage got back in track.

Smith said she learned of Ne-Yo's plans to file a divorce on the internet. “He filed for divorce, came home, and asked what was for dinner,” added Smith. “I was like, ‘Whatever your mama’s cooking. I don’t know.’ I was like, ‘You got to get up out of here. I don’t know what you’re doing, player.’ So he was like, ‘I’ll leave for the weekend, but I’ll be back on Monday.’ And it was just like, what’s the point?”

Ne-Yo said that the experience of quarantine brought them closer. “It just didn’t feel right, it didn’t make any sense to me. This is what we’ve been forever. We don’t know what this thing is, we could be gone tomorrow,” Ne-Yo went on. “So I’m not about to waste what could potentially be maybe our last moments together not together. I’m not doing it. I’m going where my home is, I’m going where my heart is. And that was it.”

Ne-Yo proposed again in 2020, and their third child was born in 2021

He proposed to Smith again on New Year’s Eve in 2020, captured by an Instagram video. They welcomed his daughter Isabella with Smith in June of 2021. "My world is finally complete," Smith wrote on Instagram.

They renewed their vows in April 2022

Smith and Ne-Yo had a vow renewal ceremony in Las Vegas in April 2022. For the event, many of the guests wore red, providing a contrast to Smith's white gown.

“Marriage is the most rewarding and challenging union you can experience,” Crystal shared on Instagram a month before the event, per Essence. “It can bring you to your knees in pain but can also make your soul feel so happy, as if you’re flying. I’ll choose you every time, in every life time , in every universe. My Twin flame. My HUSBAND. I love you so….”

He wrote a 2022 song inspired by their story

Ne-Yo's eighth studio album "Self Explanatory" came out in May 2022. He said one song, "Don't Love Me," was inspired by his marital woes with Smith.

When Ne-Yo played that song for his wife, he told Entertainment Tonight that it “reminded her of the time we were in when I wrote the song. That was kind of a teary moment because the song was written in the throes of us potentially getting a divorce.”

“I can say this now. I didn’t realize it in the moment but I can say this now, that the open letter was me trying to cop out,” he added. “It was me trying to tell her that I couldn’t be who she deserves. Once I realized what I wanted and who I needed to be for her ... we’re in a great place.”

When asked what type of advice he would give other couples who were having a hard time in their marriages, Ne-Yo said to be honest with yourself and your partner.

IMAGE: Crystal Smith and Ne-Yo attend the 2022 BET Awards on June 26, 2022 in Los Angeles, Calif.
Crystal Smith and Ne-Yo at the 2022 BET Awards.Aaron J. Thornton / Getty Images for BET

“You know what, I’d say above anything don’t lie to yourself,” he told Entertainment Tonight. “Say what is you want to, know what it is you want to do."

"If you are in a relationship and you don’t want to be in a relationship you’re never going to give your all to that relationship," the "Go On Girl" singer continued. "You’re never going to be for that person who they need you to be, so don’t lie to yourself. Be honest with yourself. If you know that that’s not what you want to do, then by all means cut the ties. It’s only going to get more and more toxic until you guys eventually start resenting each other and then there’s almost no going back from that place.”

Ne-Yo said he and Smith didn't "get to that place."

In July 2022, Smith accused Ne-Yo of being unfaithful.

Smith accused Ne-Yo of infidelity in an Instagram post.

"I ask that you all please stop sending me videos or information of him cheating because what he does is no longer my concern. I am not a victim. I am choosing to stand tall with my head held high. If someone can't love you the way that you deserve then it's up to you to love yourself. With no hate in my heart I wish him nothing but the best," she wrote on Instagram in late July.

Ne-Yo, who “liked” her post, asked the public to please give him and Smith some privacy while they work on the "challenges" in their marriage.

“For the sake of our children, my family and I will work through our challenges behind closed doors," he tweeted shortly after. "Personal matters are not meant to be addressed and dissected in public forums. I simply ask that you please respect me and my family’s privacy at this time.”

Smith filed for divorce in August 2022

Days after her Instagram post, Smith filed for divorce from Ne-Yo in a Georgia court.