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Camila Cabello Gets Real About Her Romance With Shawn Mendes: 'I Want To Protect It'

'I mean, I love him. We have always connected'

By now, we're all well aware of the rumors that longtime pals Camila Cabello and Shawn Mendes are, well, more than just friends. Between their steamy performance at this year's MTV Video Music Awards and the hot and heavy paparazzi photos that have been making the rounds on the Internet in recent months, Shawnmila shippers have been eager for any sort of verbal confirmation that the pop stars are actually dating. And in a new interview with Elle, Cabello opened up about why her relationship with Mendes is something they've chosen to stay quiet about.

"Love is the most sacred, precious thing to me," Cabello told the magazine. "I want to always feel like my love is between me and that person, and never belonging to anyone else." And despite having a close connection with her fans, the "Shameless" singer's decision to stay quiet about her love life is only to maintain a sense of normalcy. "As much as I love my fans, and as much as I love people, I like to live my life as normally as possible," she said. "In a relationship, it makes me feel uncomfortable to invite everyone in on that."

(John Shearer/Getty Images)

Of course, not addressing speculation often only adds fuel to the rumors. Luckily, Cabello isn't very concerned about what people are saying. Instead, she's using her energy on something far more satisfying: falling in love. "People can say whatever they want to say," she said. "They can speculate, but at the same time, we are going to live our own lives, enjoy it, and fall for each other like nobody is watching."

Cabello also knows that once she welcomes the public into the most personal parts of her life, she's opening up the floor for even more criticism about her and her relationship. "I never want to open the door for people to feel like they are involved," she told the mag. "Like I said, I want it to be mine and [his]. That's why I'm so tight-lipped about it: because I want to protect it."

In addition to protecting the relationship, it's also one of the first times (if not the first) that she's ever fully been in love. "Honestly, this past year and a half was the first time I really experienced falling in love with another person," she said. And now that she knows what love truly feels like, she's looking forward to releasing music that reflects her experience. "I think there is so much more depth to love when you know you are in it with another person. You have so much more to say — I think that's what makes me emotional."

And without saying too much, Cabello did leave us with a sweet comment about her longtime bond with Mendes. When asked what it was like getting to work with the "If I Can't Have You" crooner on their hit collaboration, "Señorita," Cabello said, "I mean, I love him. We have always connected; we have the best time together." Swoon.