The break up of Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn was not on our 2023 bingo card, but here we are
Flashback to 2016 when singer-songwriter Taylor Swift met actor Joe Alwyn—he was sporting a buzzcut and her hair was bleached. As Taylor sings in Gorgeous, Joe had “ruined my life by not being mine.” Thankfully, they got to know each other after that.
It was in 2017 when the pair were first photographed together, and that same year was the beginning of their quiet relationship. Their fans have been nothing short of supportive (despite the “Can Joe Alwyn fight?” tweets here and there, whenever Taylor did something jaw-dropping).
remember, when taylor swift went home and tried to stalk joe alwyn on the internet after meeting him for the first time at the 2016 met gala. pic.twitter.com/IH55wOxgvM
— WILDEST DREAMS HAHA 🧣 (@swiftoursonggg) April 10, 2023
Fast forward to 2023, and their relationship has reportedly come to an end. The couple’s supporters flocked to Cornelia Street, took over the trending spots and pretty much declared themselves as non-believers of love. Can we blame them when the whole Lover album exists because of Taylor and Joe’s relationship?
The reason behind the split is the vast difference in their levels of fame and tolerance for public attention. Sources say: “They had plenty in common and fell in love in a safe bubble while she was retreating from the world during reputation. Then the pandemic hit, and they were locked down together and able to continue growing their relationship in this insulated way. But he didn't really ‘know' her yet outside of that bubble.”
Looking back, Taylor had mentioned the importance of “trying to find bits of normalcy” in order to make her relationship with Joe work and for her life to “feel more like a real life and less like just a storyline to be commented on in tabloids.” And the rare times that Joe publicly spoke on their relationship, he emphasized the need for privacy. “We live in a culture that is so increasingly intrusive…The more you give—and frankly, even if you don't give it—something will be taken,” he reveals.
And it seems like that something has been taken now. Both Taylor and Joe have yet to confirm the news but, just like you, we are preparing ourselves for the possibility of it being true. With that, here are five songs to represent every Swiftie’s five stages of grief. To sprinkle a little salt on the wound, these songs were either written by Taylor for Joe or with Joe (also known as William Bowery).
End Game feat. Ed Sheeran and Future
“And I can’t let you go, your handprint’s on my soul”
The fanbase of the ship (Taylor + Joe = Toe) was definitely hoping the two would be the end game. So while we haven’t heard from either of them, we’ll be staying in denial.
“And if you wanted me, you really should've showed / And if you never bleed, you're never gonna grow”
This song was not necessarily written for or with Joe. However, sources say Taylor and Joe broke up a few weeks ago, and that would be around the same time Taylor added this to the setlist of The Eras Tour. the 1 is about not ending up with the person you hoped to be with; it replaced invisible string, which touches on destiny leading two people to each other.
“The worst thing that I ever did / Was what I did to you / But if I just showed up at your party / Would you have me?”
Reports say that the alleged split was not dramatic and that there is still a lot of respect between the two. With this, we hope they’d welcome each other, should they choose to show up at each other’s party.
exile feat. Bon Iver
“I think I’ve seen this film before / And I didn’t like the ending”
Ah, here comes the depression stage. This line from exile captures heartbreak-related grief so well because we already know where things are heading and we don’t like the direction it’s taking, but yet here we are. BRB, listening to this on repeat.
“But you’ll find the real thing instead / She’ll patch up your tapestry that I shred”
Whether the split is true or not, Swifties will still come to accept what Taylor and Joe decide. We should only want what’s best for them, and if this is it, then we’ll learn to be okay! As potential children of divorce, it will take some time and numerous streams of reputation all the way to Midnights, but we’ll get there.
Words Kyla Villena
Art Matthew Ian Fetalver