Nothing is inherently wrong with liking specific celebrities and greatly anticipating their next album, media release, concert, or meetup event. However many are starting to take it to the extreme, and this said extreme has become normalized slowly over the past few decades. It is considered socially acceptable to make the decision to practically worship famous people as if they’re above us or not human. To make liking a specific person or group of people your entire personality, and going as far as to violate their privacy.
Recently, the chronically online have been making this issue more known with videos of irrational fan behavior going viral throughout multiple fanbases. One prevalent example that has always bothered me, was when a member of the Korean Pop girl group NMIXX was frivolously handed an infant child onstage during one of their concerts in America. Or how people keep throwing things onstage at famous performers such as Bebe Rexha, Ava Max, Harry Styles, Cardi B, and Pink. Another example would be when Taylor Swift recently attended a rehearsal dinner for the wedding of producer Jack Antonoff. Word got out and everyone had to evacuate the building because the crowd outside was being rambunctious violating everyone’s privacy. This sort of behavior isn’t out of the ordinary; stories like this in pop culture-related websites pop up at least once a week.
There is a psychological term for this. It is called a parasocial relationship, which, to summarize, means the relationship is one-sided. Everyone has parasocial relationships and are a part of the normal human experience. It becomes unhealthy when this relationship becomes more than just basic appreciation or admiration, leading to irrational obsessive behaviors such as stalking. We tend to forget that we don’t actually know any of these people or even know what they are actually like. All that we know about most celebrities is surface-level information, and surface-level is more than what we need to know about our favorites.
I know that celebrities seem like untouchable objects of beauty or perfection. They look like they’re above us, but they’re not. They are human just like us, whether you love them or hate them. If someone famous posts on social media about their political beliefs, don’t let it shape your own. If you spot a famous person in public, mind your business and let them live their life.
To conclude, they are people too. They just happen to have the spotlight shining on them to millions of people. Nothing wrong with enjoying or appreciating them, just don’t partake when things get out of hand and recognize they are not above us.