Taylor Swift Super Bowl kiss with Travis Kelce: Why we love it


It’s a love story, baby just say yes.

These words close the chorus of Taylor Swift’s hit song “Love Story” – but they also reflect America’s general obsession with our sort-of-closest-thing-to-a-royal-couple, four-time album of the year Grammy winner Swift and Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce.

The pair, who only started dating last year, have brought us along the ride of their whirlwind romance. From very public smooches (including after the Chiefs beat the ’49ers in Sunday’s Super Bowl) to changing song lyrics (“Karma is the guy on the Chiefs”), some might call you a Scrooge for not even smiling slightly at the super couple.

“Perfect ending to this romcom we’ve been watching on live TV,” wrote one Instagram user about Swift and Kelce’s post Super Bowl smooch. The Telegraph called it a “fairytale ending.”

When happy couples like them hold hands, kiss, make heart hands and more, people on the sidelines form opinions about their interactions. Some are positive and supportive. But often people pass judgement and have negative thoughts while watching a happy couple be, well, happy. Why?

Experts say your take on happy pairs, like Swift and Kelce, may reveal way more about you than the couple in question.

“Our tendency to be happy for others or experience jealousy is strongly related to how we are experiencing our lives and relationships in the present,” Miranda Nadeau, a licensed psychologist, previously told USA TODAY.

Taylor Swift, Travis Kelce and finding joy in ‘Swelce’

Maybe you’re one of those people who can’t stop gushing over Swelce or a couple more close to home.

“How people react to seeing other’s joy and happiness is very telling,” Maryanne Fisher, a psychology professor at St. Mary’s University in Canada, previously told USA TODAY. “Some people are genuinely happy at seeing other’s (including celebrities) happiness.” You might be feeling “freudenfreude,” or “a vicarious experience of another’s joy – think opposite to schadenfreude, where one gets pleasure from another person’s misfortunes,” Fisher adds.

If you are a Swiftie, you may feel this more pronounced. “It is likely that the effect is increased when we feel a connection with the person involved, which fans may certainly experience with celebrities,” Fisher says. “This sharing of joy has all sorts of positive effects; it makes us believe things are positive and good, and relatedly decreases stress and the associated cortisol hormone.”

Are you ‘unconsciously projecting?’

On the flip-side: Finding yourself feeling bitter?

It’s easy to see yourself in other people – especially when they’re as famous as Swift and Kelce, who likely have no connection in your life beyond the parasocial. Maybe you’re a Swiftie, but in one of your sad girl eras.

“A lot of people may be unconsciously projecting,” Cecille Ahrens, a licensed clinical social worker, previously told USA TODAY. “We often project our fears and desires out into the world. We also tend to displace our feelings, our unmeet needs, our grievances onto the wrong people. (Swift and Kelce) are great targets for these defense mechanisms.”

Aww: Taylor Swift is in her Red Era as Chiefs win Super Bowl in OT and she and Travis kiss on the field

Or maybe it’s not that serious

It’s possible to oscillate between feelings – to begin accepting others’ love stories even when you are jealous – though it’s easier said than done to adjust your mindset. “Still, we can deepen our sense of what we do have in our lives and grow our abundance mindset by practicing gratitude,” Nadeau says. “Feeling deep appreciation for what we already have helps us to want the best for others too.”

Your feelings may not signal any kind of deeper trauma to work through, either.

“Someone who does not really care about someone could just think it’s sweet to see happy people and leave it at that,” Fisher says. “Also, we need to remember that it can also mean that they really did not like the person to start with, and the change of events has just simply given them a way to express this dislike. It’s hard to believe, but not everyone is a Swiftie.”

Watch: Taylor Swift ‘seemingly’ chugs her beer as 2024 Super Bowl crowd cheers

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