Taylor Swift’s dating life is not necessarily a secret to, well the entire world. Even if you have never listened to the country pop-star’s music most people know the secret to her inspiration: heartbreak. Writing about her break-ups has become the thing that the public associates Swift with, so much so that it has become a running joke: “Taylor Swift and [insert boy’s name here] broke up, get ready for a new chart topper!” And they’re right. What better way to fuel the artistic fire than writing about real life experiences? However, T-Swift has been in the media fire quite often lately as the victim of what is termed “slut shaming.”
The singer-songwriter came on the scene in 2006 with her first album and the music has just poured out ever since. Since her debut, she has dated or been rumored to date Joe Jonas (2008), Taylor Lautner (2009), Lucas Till (2009), John Mayer (2009 – 2010), Cory Monteith (2010), Toby Hemingway (2010), Jake Gyllenhall (2010 – 2011), Zac Ephron (2011), Garrett Hedlund (2011), Eddie Redmayne (2011), Conor Kennedy (2012), and Harry Styles (2012). Now, very shortly after her latest break-up, Taylor Swift is back in the dating game and is rumored to be dating Tom Odell, a British singer. Odell is a 22 year old musician who sings songs about heartbreak, something he and Swift appear to have in common. Apparently the two connected over flirty tweets from Swift about Odell’s talent, and Odell told Spinner, a music blog, that he finds Taylor Swift’s songs “brilliant” and that he thinks “she’s a lot more real than people think she is.”
I, for one, would agree with that. A lot of people take issue with Swift’s dating life, and on the surface, I can kind of understand it. However, underneath the surface is where we should look. Many people take the fact that she has dated thirteen men since her debut as “slutty.” Swift has been the subject of tweets, Facebook updates, and internet memes all along the lines of “So-and-so is married and gets called a slut, but Taylor Swift dates thirteen guys to write songs and everyone calls her cute. Wth?” and many other things along that line. So, my question is this, why does dating make Taylor Swift a “slut?” I know plenty of average, everyday people who are only 21 and have already dated a slew of people and neither I nor their friends call them “sluts”. John Mayer has dated/hooked up with or been rumored to date/hook up with fifteen people, Leonardo DiCaprio is rumored to have dated or hooked up with twenty women, George Clooney has dated around ten women, Drew Barrymore has dated or been rumored to date about twenty two men, Kate Hudson’s number is eleven, and Cameron Diaz about sixteen. These celebrities however are termed “serial daters” or “terminal bachelors/ettes” but not “sluts.” There are several celebrities who have had multiple divorces and break-ups but they are not called “sluts.”
Is Swift a “slut” because she dates guys and writes songs about them? If that’s the case, why isn’t Adele a “slut?” She made her fame and fortune writing about heartbreak. Dolly Parton, Alanis Morisette, Carrie Underwood, all write songs about heartbreak, but they’re not “sluts” because they eventually “found love.” But isn’t finding love what dating is all about? It’s not like we hear about Taylor Swift hooking up and leaving a trail of broken hearted one night stands (which is more than we can say about many celebrities). Would America rather she marry every guy she dates? I think we should be giving kudos to Swift for playing the field in order to look for Mr. Right, I mean she could have married John Mayer and maybe had a 72 day marriage like another celebrity couple we know. Of course she could have married Harry Styles, but according to reports on their relationship, I can’t see that one having lasted even 72 days. Taylor Swift is young, searching for love, and falling in and out of it. As young people, that is what we do, we search for happiness and love.
Taylor Swift is searching, and yes her search has had a lot of men who were just not for her, but if she married every guy she dated I think that would be so much worse. So, I ask again, why is Taylor Swift a “slut” for doing what most every person in their 20s does? Stop slut shaming a celebrity for doing what normal people and other celebrities do. Stop slut shaming Taylor Swift.