RIP Bennifer: Why We're So Obsessed With Celebrity Relationships

by Juliet K Barney

You could hear a pin drop the moment Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner ended their beautiful 10 years of marriage.

That silence only lasted a moment before the Twittersphere showed its tears and condolences for the seemingly happy celebrity couple.

If they can’t make it, how can we?

This is just one of the many celeb fallouts we’ve been a part of. Our obsession with celebrity love has become a part of our culture.

We hold media icons to a higher standard, hoping they can show us what love really is.

We all rooted for Jennifer Aniston in the Pitt-Jolie debacle because she was the every woman. She was the underdog, the one person we’ve all been.

We gawked as Miley Cyrus gave herself a post-Liam makeover, changing her entire identity and erasing any preconceptions we may have had about a Disney princess.

We’ve all been Miley. We’ve all worn too much black eyeliner or gone on a post-breakup crash diet in an attempt to distance ourselves from the person we were when we were in a relationship.

Some may claim our obsession with celebrities can be chalked up to escapism, but it’s more than that.

It’s a type of worship, and the Internet is the cult leader, brainwashing us with every click.

In the 90s, news outlets were minimal. They were limited to television and tabloids, but now it’s everywhere. It’s a hashtag, a meme and a Google Alert.

We get to follow each breakup, step-by-step, until it publicly implodes. We’re invested, and we’re upset. We cry and we feel until it fizzles out of the headlines, leaving us with nothing but a distant memory.

American royal couple Jennifer Aniston and Brad Pitt were the first major celebrity breakup of the Internet era, a couple whose legacy will never be forgotten.

We chose sides and stuck to them; it was an unwavering loyalty. We talk about it like it just happened and relive the sadness every time a celebrity relationship fails. It’s the breakup that will never end, thanks to the Internet.

Now, we have shows like "Keeping up with the Kardashians," where we’re able to binge on the rocky relationship of Kourtney and Scott.

We witness their fights and Scott’s struggle with alcoholism. We watch as Kourtney constantly degrades him, and he works like hell to keep her from falling out of love.

We watch as Scott reenacts famous scenes from "The Notebook" to impress Kourtney, and secretly wish we had someone to do that for us.

But, we weren't surprised when they announced their split. We knew they had problems.

But no one told us about Bennifer. We were too bogged down with the possibility that Tyga might be cheating on Kylie Jenner, and we missed the warning signs.

We didn’t get to fall apart with them, but we’re left to pick up the pieces — left to sort through the Bennifer remnants scattered throughout the Internet, wondering where it all went wrong.

We feel betrayed and hurt, left without answers. They’re keeping the reasons for their divorce a secret, leaving us to wonder.

We Google search Bennifer to reminisce, only to find that Wikipedia still lists them on their “Supercouple” page.

We find photos of her engagement ring and family beach days, wondering if there was another woman, like there was in Brad and Jennifer's situation. Ben would never do that to her, would he? Now we’re not so sure.

We watch the photos and headlines floating around like the ashes of a well-lived life.

With the end of another relationship era, we shed a final tear and turn to Mila Kunis and Ashton Kutcher, putting our faith in someone else.