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A Messy Timeline of Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn's Breakup and All the Drama That's Happened Since

taylor swift joe alwyn
Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn's Breakup TimelineChristopher Polk/NBC - Getty Images

Joe Alwyn and Taylor Swift dated for a full six years before breaking up, and with The Tortured Poets Department lurking right around the corner (which definitely seems like it's about Joe), it looks like we might finally get an inside look into their breakup. At least from Taylor's point of view!

But...it's not like there isn't already a ton of information out there about this split. Between scoops from multiple sources and insiders—and clues from Taylor herself—Swifties have a pretty decent idea of what happened between Joe and Tay...and we're laying it all out in a timeline.

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Photo credit: David Krieger/Bauer-Griffin - Getty Images
Photo credit: David Krieger/Bauer-Griffin - Getty Images

Does the Tom Hiddleston era really count at this point??? Help.

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Photo credit: Patrick Smith - Getty Images
Photo credit: Patrick Smith - Getty Images

Alexa, play “...Ready for It?”

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Photo credit: Hector Vivas/TAS23 - Getty Images
Photo credit: Hector Vivas/TAS23 - Getty Images

Correction: screaming!

March 20, 2023

Taylor is spotted getting visibly emotional while performing "Champagne Problems" on the Eras Tour, which, in retrospect, fans think might have had something to do with the fact that she was mid-breakup with Joe at this point. (We just didn't know it yet!!)

March 31, 2023

Taylor switches up her set list, swapping out "Invisible String" (a song widely believed to be about Joe) for "The 1," a breakup song. I mean, the signs were there!

April 8, 2023

Everyone's minding their damn business when Entertainment Tonight pops up all "it's me, hi!" and announces that Taylor and Joe have broken up. Their headline? A harrowing "Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn Break Up After Six Years of Dating (Exclusive)."

The intel? That Taylor and Joe broke up "a few weeks ago" (so...sometime in late March 2023) and it was "not dramatic." ET's source also says "the relationship had just run its course. It's why [Joe] hasn't been spotted at any shows."

April 10, 2023

After several days of me, you, and everyone we know spiraling, People speaks to someone who says “differences in their personalities” caused Taylor and Joe's breakup.

“They had plenty in common and fell in love in a safe bubble while she was retreating from the world during Reputation,"the source said. "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. Joe has struggled with Taylor’s level of fame and the attention from the public. The differences in their personalities have also become harder to ignore after years together. They’ve grown apart.”

April 11, 2023

The Daily Mail comes through with a source who says "It’s been hard for Joe trying to make it in Hollywood and not quite becoming leading man material while dating one of the most famous women in the world over the last six years. It was easier during the pandemic when it was just the two of them, but once things returned to normal, Taylor Swift the superstar emerged, and their differences were even more apparent."

Meanwhile, Entertainment Tonight speaks to an insider who says “Taylor and Joe are in totally different places in their lives right now. It was more of Taylor’s decision to break up, but both of them realized that they weren’t completely right for one another. They had been together for such a long time and were spending so much time together, but their personalities were just too different. Joe is more introverted, shy, and quiet.”

April 13, 2023

Taylor performs in Tampa and fans are convinced she's out here making references to her breakup:

April 19-20, 2023

A buncha Taylor's friends unfollow Joe all at once:

April 30, 2023

Taylor deletes a video of herself talking about Joe:

May 18, 2023

Amid Taylor's new relationship with Matty Healy, a source tells the Daily Mail that “Joe feels slighted and is distraught after seeing her budding relationship with Matt but is doing his best to keep busy and focus on himself.”

Oh, and “Joe was aware that Taylor and Matt were making music together and collaborating” and “she told him that they had become friends and he trusted her.”

May 23, 2023

Joe steps out for his first public appearance post-split:

joe alwyn
Instagram

May 24, 2023

Taylor reveals her vault track "You're Losing Me," and everyone speculates that it's about Joe thanks to lyrics like "I can't find a pulse / My heart won't start anymore for you / 'Cause you're losin' me."

May 28, 2023

Fans are convinced Taylor is making a POINT about Joe Alwyn when she makes a face after singing "who could ever leave me darling."

September 5, 2023

Joe posts to Instagram for the first time following their breakup, and fans are convinced it's full of REFERENCES:

November 29, 2023

Jack Antonoff reveals that "You're Losing Me" (which reminder, Taylor dropped in May 2023) was written alllll the way back in December 2021. Which is eye opening, to say the least.

November 30, 2023

Taylor's publicist, Tree, shuts down speculation that Taylor and Joe had previously gotten married:

December 3, 2023

Amid Taylor and Travis Kelce dating, fans notice that Kylie Kelce (aka Jason Kelce's wife) likes this Instagram post about Tree's tweet.

February 4, 2024

Taylor reveals her new album is called The Tortured Poets Department, which fans immediately assume is a reference to Joe's group chat with Paul Mescal and Andrew Scott called "The Tortured Man Club."

I mean....

February 5, 2024

Taylor drops the tracklist for Tortured Poets, which includes the song "So Long London," so naturally everyone spirals:

Meanwhile, a source tells the Daily Mail, “Joe has not said one word about Taylor or their breakup and has been completely respectful of her. It’s undeniable that the name of her upcoming album is in reference to Joe’s WhatsApp group chat. Taylor knocked him for the name of this when they were together. She didn’t want people to think that it had anything to do with her, so when he spoke out about it, she was, of course, bothered. Joe has no reason to believe yet that she is going to dis him or their relationship. She writes about her past using code and points of reference. It may just be that she is reflecting on their time together and he is hoping it is nothing more.”

The source adds, “If it is a dis album, that is shady. He helped her with song writing on her past album so it will really come as a shock to him if she talks about their breakup, as it is something he has not spoken of at all. Regardless of what she does, he will still not respond because he has removed himself from her narrative and is very glad he did.”

Oh, and about the album's release date? Reminder that April 19 was the day a buncha Taylor's friends unfollowed Joe:

And April 19 is also considered the date the American Revolution began, which!!

February 16, 2024

Taylor reveals the bonus song on Tortured Poets is called "The Bolter" and everyone immediately thinks it's a reference to that time Joe quite literally bolted to a car with Taylor.

February 17, 2024

Taylor tells her Melbourne audience that she was lonely while dating Joe (without dropping his name).

Speaking of writing Folklore—which she made while quarantining with her ex—she said “[I was] imagining that, instead of being a lonely millennial woman covered in cat hair drinking my weight in white wine, I instead was a ghostly Victorian lady wandering through the woods with a candle in a candlestick holder, and I wrote only on parchment with a feathered quill. And that was in my mind, what I thought I looked like writing Folklore."

Meanwhile, Taylor sings a mashup of songs and fans decide it means Joe cheated (though there's literally no proof this happened):

February 19, 2024

Joe posts on Instagram for the first time amid ~ all this ~

February 23, 2024

Taylor performs in Sydney and announces a new Tortured Poets bonus track: "The Albatross." Head here for alllll the ways that's definitely about Joe Alwyn:

That's all for now, but stay tuned for updates once Tortured Poets drops....

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