Zayn Malik Removes 1D From His Twitter Page, Marking The End Of An Era In Boy Band History

You know how you know it's gonna be May? When you see that same Justin Timberlake "It's Gonna Be May" meme everywhere, and, oh yeah, when Zayn Malik removes 1D from his Twitter page, because having a fresh start is apparently better than NOT stomping on the hearts of millions of fangirls and then SPITTING ON THEM. Okay, perhaps I'm being just the slightest bit overdramatic here, but the One Direction fandom certainly seems to be in a state of Friday mourning. (Get it?) We've been wondering for quite some time if Malik was going to change his Twitter handle at any point after leaving the band, but I never thought that it would actually happen. Especially not so abruptly.

Of course, it's not a complete sign that we should panic. Malik did not unfollow Louis Tomlinson, Harry Styles, Niall Horan, or Liam Payne on Twitter. He didn't tweet about how being in One Direction was the worst experience of his life, and how he never wanted to see those four boys ever again. He didn't even post a picture of himself setting a pile of One Direction merchandise ablaze to make his point that that part of his life was 100 percent over. Malik previously had his name listed as "zaynmalik1D" in the name field, and that has now been changed to "zaynmalik," like his Twitter handle. In addition, his profile has been changed to remove "just close your eyes and enjoy the rollercoaster that is life :) x" and a link to One Direction's website, and it has now been replaced with the simple word "england."

In response, Directioners have been trending #YouWillAlwaysBeZaynMalik1D on Twitter all morning, because let's be real. Malik could dye his now-cropped hair rainbow colors, wear nothing but Lady Gaga's meat dress, and attempt to marry himself like Sue Sylvester from Glee, and he'd still be best known as "one of the boys from One Direction." Whether you love them, hate them, or try to remain indifferent to them, One Direction are out there doing what no other band is doing right now, and for years they did it well as a five-piece ensemble. They may have gone down to four members now, but Malik will never stop being a part of that family. Thankfully, leaving the family seems to be the last thing he wants even if he left the actual band.

It might be a bit hilarious for me to watch this from the outside, a full decade after my own obsessive boy band phase, but I understand the pain that Directioners are in. I went through the break up of the Spice Girls, the Backstreet Boys, and *NSYNC. I lived through the Britney Spears or Christina Aguilera drama. I supported Hanson before they all cut their hair. I know about pain, OK? It's better than Malik starts cutting all ties in these, the early months, while the wound is still fresh. We wouldn't want the fandom to think they're over this a year from now, only to have the pain come back fresh as it's ever been when Malik chose then to finally update Twitter, now would we?