I have had a Taylor Swift obsession ever since “Teardrops on My Guitar” started gaining traction on my local radio station. I was in the eighth grade, definitely not one of the cool kids, and I felt like Taylor’s lyrics were speaking directly to me. “I’m Only Me When I’m with You” had me dreaming about the perfect relationship with my best friend. “Our Song” still makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside to this day. And then there’s “You Belong with Me,” the single that launched Taylor into mega-stardom and became every teenager’s meet-cute fantasy.
As I started to grow up, so did Taylor’s songs. “Fifteen” was released around the same time I started dating my first serious boyfriend (ah, young love), and as soon as I got my driver’s license, Taylor’s songs served as my exclusive soundtrack. My love for Taylor endured every tabloid rumor, every boyfriend, and every breakup (I was most personally invested in her relationship with Jake Gyllenhaal, mainly because “All Too Well” is the greatest song of all time). So when people started hating on her for dating too many guys, for breaking too many hearts, and writing too many songs about it, I stood by my girl. Two of her albums got me through two major break-ups; I owed her one.
In October 2014, she ditched her country twang and released her most straight-forward pop album: 1989. The world seemed to be on her side—even her most vocal critics had to admit that album was good. (After all, 1989 was covered by Ryan Adams and won Album of the Year at the Grammys.) But, like any good TSwift song: then came the drama. From her messy Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston break-ups, to the Kimye snapchat-gate, this year, Taylor found herself on unstable footing, and even the most loyal of Swifties started to waver.
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This past October, after much of the drama had started to subside, fans began to speculate about a sixth album from Taylor (four out of her five previous albums came out in October). The month came and went, and even though a certain fan theory promised an album was coming, it did not.
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So what keeps my love TSwift pure after every dramatic turn? Through all the ups and downs, there has been one constant: Taylor’s love for her fans. She’s always happy to stop for a selfie, go through hours of meet-and-greets, and visit fans in hospitals. (Her good deeds have been well-documented.) Swift knows that despite what the public thinks of her, as long as her fans love her, her career will flourish. And that, to me, is far more powerful than a few breakups and celebrity feuds.