Whether we admit it or not, most people are pretty fascinated by watching celebrity drama unfold through the lens of television and magazines that help dramatize these events for us. So most of you probably aren’t that surprised by the more recent drama with the Taylor Swift, Calvin Harris, and Tom Hiddleston love triangle/relationship drama. For those of you who may not be keeping up with your celebrity gossip, the story is pretty painfully simple. Taylor Swift and Calvin Harris broke up after a long relationship (over a year). It was speculated that the breakup could have been caused by Harris' insecurity about being with such a successful woman and/or an argument regarding song rights. Then she had a very temporary summer fling with Tom Hiddleston that ended abruptly. What These Breakups Say About 21st Century Relationships Obviously, celebrity relationships aren’t comparable to the average relationship; however, when you observe these types of relationships, we do start to notice trends. For example, Taylor Swift’s first breakup seems to illustrate some key issues with relationships in the 21st century. Taylor’s inability to keep a man illustrates how not everybody is ready to accept a successful and independent woman (specifically, some men) and how we might not be prioritizing our relationships. Swift's second breakup illustrates something simple and, frankly, not quite new. It illustrates how young people enjoy “flings” instead of taking relationships seriously.

Men--Not Ready for a 21st Century Woman? Taylor’s first break-up seems to illustrate how, despite the great strides women have made in the last 50-60 years, women are still considered “intimidating” to certain men if they are too successful. In this case “too successful” simply meaning “more successful than the man you’re dating”. This is not always the case; some men are more than willing to accept the changing gender roles of the 21st century. However, Taylor’s breakup in May shows that not all men are ready to be with a woman more successful than they are.

The male ego can be a sensitive thing, ladies. Sometimes you have to decide if he’s worth having to deal with his ego before getting too serious. It’s important to evaluate what you will and will not put up with before getting serious so you’re ready for the make-it-or-break-it moments, should they come up. Also, it’s important to remember how delicate men can be too. You need to be paying attention to his emotional needs. Just as women need to be told they are pretty and loved, men need to be told that they are sexy to you; they need to feel loved and respected just as much as you do.

Do We Prioritize Our Relationships? Taylor’s recent breakups also bring up another interesting question about modern day relationships: Do we make our romantic relationships a priority? Both of Swift's breakups seemed to be career-motivated (the first possibly because of her success and/or about her music, and the second over too much public attention and a hesitation on the man’s part to be written about). Is it possible that Taylor wasn’t making her boyfriends enough of a priority in her life? Was it a lack of prioritizing on both sides? Is it stupid to put a relationship before your career?

These are all important questions to be asking ourselves in our current relationships (or as preparation for a new relationship). It’s important to know what your priorities are in life and to disclose these to your partner as early as possible. If your career is more important to you than your love life, your partner needs to know to not expect anything more from you. It’s not fair to not disclose these things later on, just as it’s not fair to not disclose if you are the type of person who requires a lot of attention and time to feel loved relatively early in the relationship. Your expectations and needs need to be addressed before the relationship gets too serious. Simply liking someone won’t matter in the long run, you need to want the same things out of life (or at least close enough for certain aspects to be compromised).

Dating in the modern age can be very difficult, especially with the trends of unhealthy relationships helping us to make excuses for our unhealthy habits. Just because something becomes considered “normal” doesn’t make it the best option. Always make sure you’re doing your best to make your relationship as strong as possible.

Desire more dating advice? If so, check out How to Tell if Someone is The Relationship Type and Can Optimistic Or Pessimistic Thinking Kill Relationships? for more helpful advice on how to handle today’s relationship issues.

Have other ideas and/or suggestions about how to deal with modern day relationships? If so, be sure to add your suggestions in the comments below.