Issa Rae Talks Life as a Newlywed and Possibly Becoming a Mother: 'I Like My Life, I Like This Selfishness'
By Mekishana Pierre
Issa Rae is opening up about her life as a newlywed. The Insecurestar graces the cover of Self magazine's October issue, where she gives readers insight into her personal life, community, and upcoming projects.
Rae, who is notoriously private about her life, admits that she prefers to create boundaries that keep her work separate from her personal life.
"I think the little time I've been in the industry, I've witnessed how so many people who are front-facing don't have a peace and aren't at peace, and that's always been troubling to me," she shares. "In this age of social media, where I was an avid user, I would share so much of myself, of my friend group, and it was fun because it felt like [it was] just among my friends. The more I started to seep out, the more I felt like people took ownership of me and my decisions and things that I did. That's just not something that sat right with me, and I found that I don't like to be the subject of conversations that I don't initiate. There's just something uncomfortable about that."
While there are inevitable parts of her life she knows she'll have to share with the public, she's decided that she will control the narrative of when and how she shares them. When it came to the news of her wedding to longtime love Louis Diame, Rae chose a surprise Instagram post that she jokingly called an "impromptu photo shoot."
"I still try to be private about my personal life, but that was something that I knew was going to be shared, and I just wanted to share it on my own terms," she explains.
Even as she savors her private bliss, Rae is juggling several new projects, which includes Rap Sh*t, an upcoming HBO Max comedy series that follows two high school friends who reunite to form a rap group, Sweet Life: Los Angeles, an unscripted, Baldwin Hills–like series about glamorous and motivated 20-somethings living in South L.A., a reboot of Project Greenlight, the Matt Damon–Ben Affleck reality show that gave money and support to aspiring filmmakers, and a voice role in the upcoming Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse sequel.
It's a full schedule that, with the addition of making time for friends, family, and her new husband, makes it hard to decide if she'll eventually want children down the line.
"I'm extremely happy. I like my life, I like this selfishness, and I know that I have a window. I've always felt that way, that women, Black women especially—unless you're Viola Davis or Angela Bassett—you have a window when people are going to want to continue to see you and see what you can do," the 36-year-old actress-producer says. "Then there are so many limitations placed upon you, and that does keep me up. I want to do as much as I can while I still can. I know it's not the proper mentality to think that kids will slow you down, but I do feel that way."
Even with her ever-rising fame, busy schedule and fulfilling personal life, Rae doesn't see herself stopping her work anytime soon. There's still so much she wants to do, such as actively supporting Destination Crenshaw, a developing open-air public space that will celebrate arts and culture in the Black community as part of the new Metro expansion to Los Angeles International Airport, and continuing to build her legacy so she can use her platform to effect change for her community is part of it all. And she's going to do all that while making sure she's enforcing those boundaries around her private life.
"There's something really nice to have a piece of me that no one knows about or no one can talk about except for the people that are part of my life," she says. "Self-care has been having a private piece that’s just for me."