The last few blog posts were all about love, relationships, and the lack of love and relationships. This blog post will continue that momentum, but will cover it in a different light. The ‘Love Is Blind’ references are over, at least for now. This time, I want to discuss none other than Taylor Swift. Let’s face, she’s a f*cking masterpiece. She can make art through literally almost nothing. She can create poetry out of three sentences. Her latest 3 albums, especially, proved that.
Swift has been in the news a lot as of late. She and her boyfriend of 6 years, actor Joe Alwyn, broke up about a month ago. Throughout their relationship, not much was ever known about them. Taylor mostly opened up about their relationship through songs, which is what she’s always done throughout her 17 year career. And unlike with her other exes, Joe co-wrote some of her songs with her for her last 3 albums. I have to say that of all her studio albums, ‘Midnights’ is my favorite. It’s raw, emotional, mature, and heartbreaking all at the same time. In hindsight, the album was both a love letter to Alwin, as well as a goodbye letter to their relationship.
Before she met and fell in love with the British actor, was a very public person. She was active on social media and we’d see paparazzi pictures of her almost daily. She also didn’t seem to min or care whether she was photographed with someone she was dating, with the likes of Harry Styles, Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston, as well as with her many list of friends. Once she got together with Joe, everything about her persona changed. She was barely using social media, and when she was, she’d only post about her work. She was rarely seen out, whether it was alone, with her boyfriends, or with her friends. Once news of her breakup broke, Taylor was everywhere again just like she used to be back in the day, and she seemed to be better than ever.
In recent years, Swift has been all about her work. It was evident ever since Scooter Braun took ownership of her entire music catalog a few years back. She’s been busy re-recording her previous albums, making brand new ones, touring, and more. She’s been so busy that I’m surprised she had time for a long-term, serious relationship in the first place. Rumors were flying around that she and Alwyn were engaged, but that never came to be. Alwin denied the rumors in an interview, and Taylor, just like she always does, found this as an opportunity to write a new song or two or even three.
Once news broke of their breakup, sources said that Taylor and Joe broke up because they were in two different places in their lives and drifted apart. Like I said, Taylor was all about her work. But Alwin wanted to settle down, get married, and maybe have some children. 6 years, almost 7, is a long time to stay in the same place in a relationship, especially when one of the two people want to move forward in their relationship rather than stay in one place. Many were surprised and shocked that Taylor and Joe broke up, but if you really think about it, it’s really not that surprising at all. The demise of the relationship was inevitably coming.
This demise got me thinking, though…
Even though it’s 2023 and the world is changing, the roles of men and women in relationships remain the same. A man can be successful professionally and have a family. He can be good at both. Society will consider them to be good at everything, and it doesn’t matter whether they actually are or aren’t. A woman being successful both in her career and her personal life is almost impossible. That’s at least how society views women. It’s either women can be successful in their careers OR their personal lives, but never both. And even when women are successful in their careers, they’re being judged for either juggling their careers and sacrificing their time with family for their careers, or for putting their careers first. Unlike men, women can’t have it all.
Taylor Swift is the mere definition of that sort of judgement. She’s even written songs about society’s judgement of her. These songs range from ‘Blank Space’, ‘The Man’, and ‘Lavender Haze’. ‘Lavender Haze’ specifically got my attention as it has the lyric, ‘The only kind of girl they see is a one night stand or a wife.’ Despite her being in the music industry for half her life, society still take more of an interest in her personal life rather than her career. And society still uses her personal life as a joke punchline. Society didn’t take her seriously as an artist, but used her personal life as a fun game.
I was never in her relationship, so I can only base it on my assumptions, but maybe because Joe was so domesticated and wanted to settle down, he expected her to marry him, have a couple of kids, and sacrifice her career. Judging by how much work she’d done in just a few years, she wasn’t willing to do that. She had already sacrificed a lot by being in a relationship with him, including her ways of promoting herself to her fans. That was most evident as as soon as they broke up, Taylor was seen out and about with her friends three times in a matter of days. She was herself again. She was free to do whatever she wanted, however she wanted. She didn’t have to answer to anyone. Alwyn, on the other hand, never had to give up anything throughout their entire relationship, and he wouldn’t have had to anyway if they didn’t break up and went ahead and moved forward and got married and had children. Maybe that’s why they ended their relationship in the first place.
What does this have to do with me….
By no means am I comparing myself to Taylor Swift. That would be absurd. But the end of Taylor Swift’s relationship made me re-evaluate my own marriage and see the positive light. My husband was always supportive of anything I ever did. He never held me back; encouraged instead. I didn’t ever feel like he was holding me back. On the contrary, he was always my loudest cheerleader. I think each and every woman deserves to have the type of partner that believes in her aspirations just as much as she does, if not more. Relationships are all about compromises, but they shouldn’t be about sacrifices.