Taylor Swift has had her fair share of high-profile romances over the years. From Harry Styles and John Mayer to Calvin Harris and Tom Hiddleston, longtime Swifties have been following along with the superstar's romances that have been consistently and thoroughly covered by the press. But all of that would change with current boyfriend Joe Alwyn. As soon as Swift started dating the British actor, she decided to do things differently and keep her relationship as private as possible for the first time. That could be their secret to success since they have now been together for nearly four years and we barely know anything about their life together.
Here's an inside look at the couple's relationship timeline as well as everything we know about their sweet love story.
Joe Alwyn is an actor who has primarily appeared in period piece films like The Favourite, Mary Queen of Scots, and Harriet. Though the singer hasn't necessarily revealed how their love story first started, her fans speculate that they met at the Met Gala in 2016. The lyrics to "Dress" from her album Reputation include the lyrics "Flashback when you met me / Your buzzcut and my hair bleached," which definitely represents how they both looked at the event though Swift has not confirmed or denied that the song referred to her and the actor.
Ever since, the couple has barely ever been spotted together. Sleuthy fans deduced that they were both spotted by paparazzi attending the same private Kings of Leon concert at the Bowery Hotel in New York later in 2016 after Swift broke up with Hiddleston. It's unclear whether they actually hung out at the concert but we like to think they did.
Fast forward to 2017 and The Sun reports that the couple has been seeing each other secretly for months. They claimed that Swift had been flying to London to visit Alwyn in private jets and was wearing disguises around town "like scarves and hats."
We saw multiple Easter eggs nodding to Alwyn in Swift's album Lover. "London Boy" was an obvious one as well as "Gorgeous" with the lyrics — "Ocean blue eyes looking in mine/ I feel like I might sink and drown and die."
Fans really didn't get to see a glimpse behind the curtain until Swift's Netflix documentary Miss Americana was released earlier this year. In the doc, we see Swift run into her boyfriend's arms backstage at one of her Reputation shows. She even opens up a bit about falling in love at a time when she had been getting some of the worst press of her career and was under fire for her public feuds with Kanye West and his wife Kim Kardashian.
"I figured I had to reset everything," she says of her time following the feud. "I also was falling in love with someone who had a really wonderfully normal, balanced, grounded life. We decided together that we wanted our relationship to be private," she said.
Fans had also speculated that Alwyn had multiple songwriting credits on Swift's album folklore because they noticed that one particular songwriter listed just didn't exist. It wasn't until her Disney Plus special Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions that she revealed that he had in fact been writing with her under the name "William Bowery."
"It was a step that we would have never have taken, because why would we have ever written a song together?" she asked collaborators Jack Antonoff and Aaron Dessner in the Disney special.
She said that Alwyn played "piano beautifully" and that together they were "making things up and kind of creating things." She even credited her boyfriend with coming up with the chorus for "Betty." He also collaborated on the song "Exile." She told EW that having a song from a male perspective ("Betty") was totally new for her.
"That was huge for me. And I think it came from the fact that my co-writer, William Bowery [Joe Alwyn], is male — and he was the one who originally thought of the chorus melody. And hearing him sing it, I thought, "That sounds really cool." Obviously, I don't have a male voice, but I thought, "I could have a male perspective."
But the couple didn't stop there! According to the Grammy winner's Instagram, she couldn't stop writing music after releasing folklore so for the first time ever she released a sister album just five months later, her ninth studio album evermore. Her boyfriend Joe (William Bowery) has writing credits on "Champagne Problems", "Coney Island", and "Evermore" and the singer continues to maintain that both albums are not about her personal life.
Fans have been able to deduce that the couple has been quarantining with each other during COVID this year at Swift's home in Nashville. Though as far as we can tell the actor hasn't put a ring on it, we can't wait to see what's in store next for one of our favorite high-profile relationships!