Harry Styles and Louis Tomlinson are trending on Twitter.
Why, you ask?
Because fans of the former One Direction heart-throbs have decided to make the “ship” trend again.
Haven’t you all had enough? Because certainly, both of them have.
At the height of One Direction’s popularity, fans began to passionately “ship” Louis Tomlinson with Harry Styles. So popular was this ship, in fact, that it got its own name: Larry (a portmanteau of Louis and Harry — how cute).
For those that don’t know what “shipping” is (because they have a life), it’s a term that refers to fans who have an overwhelming desire for two or more people — either “real life” people or fictional characters in films, television shows, and comic books — to get together and have a “relationship.” The earliest known “ship” took place in the 1970s, when “Star Trek” fans shipped Captain Kirk and Mr. Spock .
There are different schools of thought about “shipping” — some schools of thought think it’s healthy and normal , while others believe it’s a sign of delusion and other mental illnesses .
Regardless of which school of shipping thought you subscribe to, Louis Tomlinson made clear that the “Larry” ship ruined his life — it not only negatively impacted his real relationship with his girlfriend, Eleanor, but it ruined his friendship with Harry Styles .
It kind of happened naturally for me and Harry because a certain amount of the fans drew up this conspiracy. When it first came around I was with Eleanor, and it actually felt a little bit disrespectful to Eleanor, who is my girlfriend now. I’m so protective over things like that, about the people I love. It created this atmosphere between the two of us where everyone was looking into everything we did. It took away the vibe you get off anyone. It made everything, I think on both fences, a little bit more unapproachable. I think it shows that it was never anything real, if I can use that word.
The video below explains in better detail just how out of control the Larry “ship” got.
One Direction fans are a passionate bunch. And that’s okay.
But what’s not okay is to make a celebrity — in this case, Louis Tomlinson — so miserable that he loses a friendship with a bandmate of his over a “ship” that he’s made clear has no basis in reality.
While we could argue all day about whether shipping is normal or not, we can all agree that when shipping starts to affect real people and their real lives, it is not okay.
As psychologist Bence Nanay says:
What I take the main characteristic of shipping (and a somewhat frightening thing about it) is that all other considerations are deemed irrelevant compared to the interest in getting the shipped couple together. Shippers have no patience for anything else–whatever does not move the two characters towards each other is time and energy wasted. And once they are together, happily engaged, everything else is seen as a distraction from showing the two of them holding hands being happy.
I have no idea how people can claim to be fans of either Louis Tomlinson or Harry Styles while writing tweets like these , let alone causing the breakup of one of the greatest friendships in pop culture…but shippers like these aren’t fans. And this “shipping” needs to stop.