Why did Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris break up? For the same reason as Zayn Malik and Gigi Hadid: you couldn't leave them alone

The more sucked in we become, the more romances are bound to fail

Charlotte Gill
Friday 03 June 2016 17:07
Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift hug during the iHeartRadio Music Awards
Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift hug during the iHeartRadio Music Awards

Another one bites the dust! Red carpet favourites Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik are over. What a match made in heaven these two seemed, but eight months into their romance and they’ve called it quits. It’s a tragedy we’re all going to find it hard to get over.

It’s not been a good week for celebrity love. Calvin Harris and Taylor Swift, who also separated this week, haven’t even offered their fans an explanation.

I knew it would never work out between these couples. For starters, Harris is Scottish and Malik is from Bradford; their former girlfriends both from the US. Have you seen an American try to cope with a British regional accent? It’s a disaster, I tell you. As soon as these poor Americans worked out what the Brits were saying, they undoubtedly scarpered.

Of course, there are bigger issues at play – fascinating though it is to imagine Scottish men wooing blonde American popstars. In this age, high-profile relationships are pretty much doomed from the start, no thanks to advances in technology. If you look historically at famous pairings, you’ll notice how much they’ve shortened over the decades. Compare the 35-year union of Johnny Cash and June Carter to the average Hollywood relationship. 35 years these days would be nothing short of a miracle.

There’s always been the problem of press interference, which Cash and Carter’s generation would have suffered from. But nowadays we have social media, too, which takes intrusion to a whole new level. The emergence of Twitter, Instagram and Facebook offer an easy porthole into celebrity lives, and create a pressure-cooker environment for relationships. There’s no escaping from the spotlight - and romances consequently burn out.

The other problem with social media is that – aside from being a legitimate stalking tool - it gives fans the impression that they’re friends with a celebrity. You need only look at the reactions across the internet to see how delusional people are about their association with Swift, Hadid and their former boyfriends. They mourn the relationships, hypothesising about what could possibly have gone wrong. Some have said that Harris couldn’t handle Swift’s superstar status; that Hadid and Malik had been having communication issues. It’s all a bit sad, really.

None of us will ever know what goes on inside most celebrity relationships. We may even find ourselves buying into false realities, as I’m sure there are many artificial pairings in Hollywood – which can be easily structured and brought to life through the lying lens of Instagram. On the whole, society has become sickeningly obsessed with the glitterati. We buy into their clothes, their make-up, and more than ever their relationships, looking for advice and reassurance.

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The more sucked in we become, the more romances are bound to fail. Last week (what is it about this month?), YouTube couple Jesse Wellens and Jeana Smith announced they were breaking up after 10 years, in one of the most depressing videos I’ve seen in a long time. They blamed the pressure of their YouTube careers, deciding to take a break.

That’s what these celebrities really need: a break from the spotlight. Because the more you stay in it, the more you kiss goodbye to the chance of true love. With everyone breathing down your neck, it becomes impossible to act in an authentic fashion. How can you possibly relax when someone’s trying to take a temperature reading of your relationships every minute of the day?

The press are even, at times, guilty of creating self-fulfilling prophecies for relationships – making grand statements about their statuses that could easily end up as psychological triggers for the people concerned.

Through our gratuitous interest in celebrity lives, we are all guilty of sabotaging their chances at love. Of course, they choose to be famous and have to – to an extent – accept the costs that come with that (privacy intrusion, mostly). But they are still human beings, not carcasses for us to feast on. If there is any lesson to be taken from the latest celebrity break-ups, it should be this: it’s time to back off.

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