Why Did Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Break Up? Everything We Know So Far

Love is dead (:

Taylor Swift, Joe Alwyn
(Image credit: Getty)

Taylor Swift fans' world came violently crashing down this weekend when reports emerged that the Midnights singer and her partner Joe Alwyn had broken up. The two had been together for six years.

A source told Entertainment Tonight—which first delivered the disappointing news—that their separation had not been "dramatic" and that they had ended things on good terms.

"The relationship had just run its course," the source said. "It’s why [Alwyn] hasn’t been spotted at any shows."

Fans were previously wondering whether Jaylor/Toe (I can't decide which is worse) had broken up because Alwyn didn't attend an Eras Tour date, though the official line had been that he was busy with his own projects.

A source even told People on March 22, "Joe will travel with her when he can. They are great together. Joe is super supportive of her career." Well if they're so great together, why aren't they together anymore, huh, Anonymous Source Person???? Everything is a lie.

Anyway, as I try to collect myself to the best of my ability, here are some of the things we know so far—which is to say, not a whole lot that has been confirmed.

What

Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn have reportedly broken up after six years together. However, neither party has officially confirmed the reports, nor directly addressed them.

When

A source told People that the two celebs broke up a "few weeks ago." This could indicate that the breakup happened prior to the singer's concert tour beginning on March 17. Logistically, this would make sense, too. Again, none of this has been confirmed, and some people believe the breakup happened during the tour.

Why

Since nobody involved in the actual breakup has spoken out about it, we of course don't know why it happened. But anonymous sources who speak with authority (whether justified or not) have theories for us.

"They've had rough patches before and always worked things out, so friends thought they would take some time apart but eventually come back together," a source told People, adding that "ultimately" the two "weren't the right fit for one another."

They added, "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."

For the insider, Alwyn wasn't comfortable with the level of attention Swift received from fans.

"Joe has struggled with Taylor's level of fame and the attention from the public," they said. "The differences in their personalities have also become harder to ignore after years together. They've grown apart." :(

What else?

Swift hasn't directly addressed the breakup, but as ever with the singer, she has appeared to make concert setlist decisions based on her state of mind.

For example, per Page Six, she replaced "Invisible String"—a love song believed to be about Alwyn—with "The 1," which goes, "But it would've been fun / If you would've been the one." This was on March 31 in Arlington, Texas.

During that same show, People reports that Swift chose two breakup songs as her surprise tracks: "Death by a Thousand Cuts" and "Clean."

Fans also noticed Swift getting emotional during a rendition of "Champagne Problems" during another tour date.

What now?

It sounds like both parties felt this breakup was the right decision for them. "Taylor didn't see them working out in the long run," People's source said.

"They are friendly. She doesn't have anything bad to say about Joe. They just grew apart. Taylor is staying very focused on her tour right now."

Though fans have all sorts of theories about Swift dating new people, it looks like she's just enjoying life, after she appeared out in New York City with friends Jack Antonoff and Margaret Qualley. Also, the restaurant was around the corner from Cornelia Street, so I'll leave you all with that to spiral in peace. Bye!

Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.