Kacey Musgraves Recalls Being 'Disappointed' By Dating Post-Divorce: 'It Was Just Shocking'

Kacey Musgraves said that her divorce from Ruston Kelly took her "back to ground zero" when understanding who she is as a person

Kacey Musgraves learned the hard way that finding love after heartbreak isn't always easy.

The country singer, 33, sat down with Zane Lowe for Apple Music ahead of the release of her album Star-Crossed, and detailed some of her disappointing forays into the dating world following her 2020 divorce from Ruston Kelly.

In a clip shared exclusively with PEOPLE, Musgraves said that exploring the single life was new for her, and she was left reeling after being "let down" by someone she'd been seeing who had planned to visit her on Thanksgiving.

"It was kind of my first few steps into exploring being a single 30-something-year-old person, after a marriage and… Nothing for nothing. After a huge point in my career, more notoriety, it was a really naked place," she said.

While the "Slow Burn" singer was initially "kind of excited" about exploring that, she wound up being "really disappointed" by one of her early attempts, which made her realize that dating isn't all fun and games.

"We live in this hookup culture, and I'm for it," she said. "I'm for whatever it makes you feel happy, as long as it's safe, doesn't hurt other people, fine. But I've just never experienced that, the dating app culture and all that."

"I mean, I'm not going to," she added. "But, what I'm saying is, it was just shocking. It was a little shocking. It was surprising. And it made me just think that we all have flaws…"

Though that relationship may not have worked out, Musgraves seems to have found what she was looking for in new beau Cole Schafer, with whom she was first spotted in June.

Kacey Musgraves; Courtesy Apple Music
Zane Lowe and Kacey Musgraves. Courtesy Apple Music

"He did not know who I was, which I loved," she told The New York Times last month of the first time she met Schafer.

Musgraves' new relationship comes more than a year after she filed for divorce from Kelly, 33, in 2020 after two-and-a-half years of marriage.

The Grammy winner told Lowe that the split took her back to square one when it came to understanding just who she was as a person.

"It took me back to ground zero in completely trying to just understand myself and why I do the things that I do, and why do you reenact those things through other people in your relationships?" she said in the new interview. "So I think that I could've coasted another few years in the same zone that I was at."

Kacey Musgraves; Courtesy Apple Music
Zane Lowe and Kacey Musgraves. Courtesy Apple Music

Instead, Musgraves took the proper time to reflect on the failed relationship, and soak in any lessons she could learn from it.

"I'm honestly really glad for the opportunity to acknowledge the relationship, acknowledge the love that I had, but move on and be better," she said.

Ruston Kelly; Kacey Musgraves
Ruston Kelly and Kacey Musgraves in 2019. George Pimentel/WireImage

Those reflections will likely be found on Star-Crossed, which comes out on Sept. 10 and which Musgraves has said is a product of her divorce.

"I feel, through this process, I'm a little closer to humanity in some ways, because you can be the Golden Hour girl, and you can have rose-colored glasses and experience this earth-shattering love, and you can experience the antithesis of that, and that is life, and you just roll with it," she said.

"And it's real, and at first I felt a little bit like, okay, so the world now knows me from this album that is exclaiming all the beautiful things about falling in love with someone, and then here I come…" Musgraves continued. "I mean, it's an opportunity to dig into yourself, to learn more about why you do the things that you do, why you choose the kind of people that you do."

Watch the full Zane Lowe interview at 1 p.m. ET here.

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