Lupita Nyong’o on how she’s been coping with her breakup: ‘I had a voice say in my head, ‘Get a cat.’’

Actress Lupita Nyong’o opens up about how her rescue cat Yoyo has helped her heal from loss and heartbreak. 

Lupita Nyong'o, A Quiet Place: Day One, Black people who own cats, celebrity cats, celebrity pets,
Lupita Nyong'o and Schnitzel the cat attend the photocall for "A Quiet Place: Day One" at IET London: Savoy Place on May 1, 2024, in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images)

Lupita Nyong’o is officially a girl with a cat.

The Academy Award-winning actress is opening up in a new cover story for Glamour magazine about how her orange rescue tabby cat named Yoyo saved her from the trenches of heartbreak and sadness.

“I was really having a hard time believing in joy,” she told the publication. “I was flirting with depression. I wasn’t there yet, but I was flirting with it. And I had a voice say in my head, ‘Get a cat.’”

Nyong’o adopted Yoyo after undergoing cat therapy to prepare for her role in the upcoming horror film “A Quiet Place: Day One,” in theaters June 28. Nyong’o’s character is a cat owner, but Nyong’o had a fear of cats. Not wanting to pass up the role, she underwent therapy to get better acquainted with the animal. She got so comfortable that she had to adopt one for herself.

“I guess the best anecdote for when you feel poorly taken care of is to take care of something. And I took care of Yoyo, and he pried my heart open,” she said to Glamour.

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This article comes seven months after the actress announced her split from TV host and sports commentator Selema Masekela in October 2023. The pair had been romantically linked since December 2022. This marked the first public relationship for Nyong’o, who was open throughout and as she has healed from the breakup.

At the time, she told fans on social media that she was in a “season of heartbreak” following a “deception” she has yet to disclose fully. Since she announced her breakup, she has also expressed that she’s returning to keeping her private life private, something she doubled down on while speaking to Glamour.

“There is a time to be open, and there’s a time not to be, and I chose that time to be open,” she said, adding, “I’m very happy with what I did, and I don’t want to do it anymore. I don’t want to share that part of myself anymore.”

While Nyong’o hasn’t publicly shared any updates about her romantic status, she has made headlines in recent months for romantic rendezvous with the actor Joshua Jackson, including a trip to Mexico in March