Whitney Houston's close friend Robyn Crawford says they had sexual relationship.

Robyn Crawford, a close female friend of Whitney Houston, has said the pair had a sexual relationship.

Rumours have long surrounded Houston and Crawford, who made the revelations in her memoir, A Song for You: A Life with Whitney Houston, and in an interview with NBC News. “In the early part of that friendship, it was physical,” Crawford told NBC. “It was during that first summer that we met, was the first time our lips touched. And it wasn’t anything planned, it just happened. And it felt wonderful. And then, not long after that, we spent the night together. And that evening was the night that we touched. And that just brought us closer.”

“We never talked about labels, like lesbian or gay,” Crawford writes in her memoir. “We just lived our lives and I hoped it could go on that way forever.” But Houston soon ended the physical side of their relationship. “She said we shouldn’t be physical any more, because it would make our journey even more difficult,” Crawford writes. “She said if people find out about us, they would use this against us, and back in the 80s that’s how it felt.”

Houston went on to marry R&B star Bobby Brown in 1992, with whom she had a famously fractious relationship. They divorced in 2006. Prior to her marriage, Houston had become friends with actor Eddie Murphy; in her memoir, Crawford claims Houston was eager for a relationship with Murphy, and was hurt when he failed to show up for a date they had planned. Crawford also claims Murphy called Houston on the morning of her wedding “to say she was making a mistake, but she pressed ahead.” Murphy has not commented on the claim, and has previously claimed the pair were friends but never dated.

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Houston died in 2012, drowning in a bathtub with a coroner also citing “effects of atherosclerotic heart disease and cocaine use”. Brown said in 2016: “I really feel that if Robyn was accepted into Whitney’s life, Whitney would still be alive today … She didn’t have close friends with her any more.”

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