Jennifer Lopez has opened up about calling off her wedding to Ben Affleck nearly 20 years ago and admits it sent her "on a spiral for the next 18 years".

The singing sensation, who wed the Oscar winner earlier this year after they reunited following decades apart following their 2003 split, said she struggled to perform songs penned bear the time of their break-up.

Speaking to Zane Lowe on Apple Music 1, she said: "Dude, I wouldn't even perform these records. It was so painful after we broke up. Once we called off that wedding 20 years ago, it was the biggest heartbreak of my life. I honestly felt like I was going to die. It sent me on a spiral for the next 18 years where I just couldn’t get it right.

"It’s funny because when me and Ben got back together, he was like, 'You never performed the songs. You never did, I’m glad. You never did this, you never did that.’ I was like, ‘You're right. It was painful.’

"It was a part of me then that I had to put away to move on and survive. It was a survival tactic, for sure."

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez a year before their split in 2002

She added about Affleck's fondness for her 2002 record This Is Me... Then, released months before they called off their engagement in 2003: "He loves that album. He loves that music. He knows all of the words. You know what I mean? It’s crazy. He also was with me while I was creating it... he's my biggest fan, which is awesome, and supporter."

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The 53-year-old chart-topper, who is preparing to release her latest album This Is Me... Now, added: "That album, ‘This Is Me... Then’ really captured a moment in time where I fell in love with the love of my life. It’s all right there on the record. I didn’t even realise what was happening and what I was doing.

"It was just every day going from the set to the recording studio, doing the thing, being in love, him coming into the studio, writing 'I'm Glad’ and going, ‘This reminds me of...’, you know what I mean?

"Me tweaking the lyrics with him. Every single song that we wrote there, me writing ‘Dear Ben’, it was such a special moment in time to have captured."

Jennifer Lopez says Ben Affleck has always been "the love of my life"

Lopez said the hit 2002 album was "prophetic" as it seemed to predict her and Affleck's split after it was released.

She added: "I decided to call it 'This Is Me... Then’ – this moment in time was captured of finding your soulmate in that time and it's all there.

"When I listen to the lyrics now, I didn’t even realise I was writing some of our story that would happen, which was sick still.

"Some of the records on there, which were more obvious about Ben, but even records that you were like, ‘That’s a breakup record’ – I didn’t even realise that it was prophetic in a weird way."

After the couple called off their wedding in 2003, Affleck married Jennifer Garner in 2005, and had children Violet, 16, Seraphina, 13, and Sam, 11, with the actress, while Lopez had twins, Emme and Max, 14, with ex-husband Marc Anthony.