Joe Alwyn Spoke Candidly About Taylor Swift & Open Relationships

The Conversations With Friends actor said he finds non-monogamous relationships to be “endlessly fascinating.”

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 06: Taylor Swift and Joe Alwyn arrive at Zuma on October 06, 2019 in Ne...
Jackson Lee/GC Images/Getty Images

Joe Alwyn is thrilled to be dating one woman and one woman only. The 30-year-old actor, who’s set to star in the TV adaptation of Sally Rooney’s Conversations With Friends later this year, has been in a monogamous relationship with pop music icon Taylor Swift since 2016. But his character on the show, Nick Conway, has a different approach to dating. Instead of committing to just one person, Conway is an open relationship.

During the show’s CTAM presentation for media on Tuesday, Feb. 8, Alwyn was asked if he and Swift have ever considered opening up their relationship to other people. And while he doesn’t judge those who are polyamorous, he personally prefers being in a relationship with just one person. “I think people can do what they want and makes them happy,” the Harriet actor said, according to Deadline. “I’m obviously happy in a monogamous relationship.”

But just because Alwyn doesn’t practice non-monogamy himself doesn’t mean he isn’t interested in exploring all different kinds of relationships. “I think one of the interesting things about Sally’s writings and what she explores is happiness, love, desire, and intimacy outside of those constructs that we create for ourselves, whether that’s friendships or families or relationships,” he said. “So I think as a conversation it’s endlessly fascinating.”

Ricky Vigil M/GC Images/Getty Images

This was one of the rare times that Alwyn spoke publicly about his romance with the “All Too Well” singer. In a 2019 interview with the UK’s The Times, he said that he is hesitant to speak about their relationship publicly, but that it doesn’t bother him when Swift writes songs about their relationship. “It’s flattering,” he said. He also said that he avoids reading tabloid fodder about their romance altogether.

“I just don’t pay attention to what I don’t want to pay attention to,” he explained, adding that “99 percent” of what the media says about their relationship is false. “I turn everything else down on a dial. I don’t have any interest in tabloids.” The year before, in an interview with British Vogue, he said he understands why people care so much about their relationship, but they still prefer to keep it private.

“I’m aware people want to know about that side of things,” he told the magazine. “I think we have been successfully very private, and that has now sunk in for people. But I really prefer to talk about work.” Around the same time, he told British GQ that “someone’s private life is by definition private,” and that they didn’t feel obligated to share that private side of themselves with the world.

Robert Kamau/GC Images/Getty Images

Swift, for her part, has been slightly more open about their notoriously private relationship. In addition to rumors that Alwyn has been the subject of many of her songs, including “Gorgeous,” “Cornelia Street,” and “London Boy,” she told The Guardian’s Weekend magazine in 2019 that her relationship is not up for public debate, which is why she doesn’t speak about it publicly.

“I’ve learned that if I do [talk about it], people think it’s up for discussion, and our relationship isn’t up for discussion,” she said. “If you and I were having a glass of wine right now, we’d be talking about it — but it’s just that it goes out into the world. That’s where the boundary is, and that’s where my life has become manageable. I really want to keep it feeling manageable.”

The “Wildest Dreams” artist has opened up about their romance a handful of times since then. In a 2020 interview with Paul McCartney for Rolling Stone, the 32-year-old pop star revealed that her song “Peace” is about how scary it is being in a relationship with someone who has a “very grounded, normal way of living.” And in her Disney+ special, Folklore: The Long Pond Studio Sessions, she revealed that they co-wrote “Exile” and “Betty” for her album Folklore.

Despite writing together, Alwyn and Swift still like to keep their romantic life private. “I was falling in love with someone who had a wonderfully normal, balanced life,” the “Love Story” singer said in her 2020 Netflix documentary, Miss Americana. “We decided together we wanted our relationship to be private. I was happy. But I wasn’t happy in the way I was trained to be happy. It was happiness without anyone else’s input. We were just happy.”