I am a kpop fan, I’d assume that’s pretty evident. I also have a boyfriend, which you’d know if you’ve intensely followed this blog, especially if you’ve read my travel tales. These may seem like completely unrelated facts about me, but are they?
No, to me they aren’t. I have, as I am writing this, known my boyfriend for 1 year, 7 months and 12 days, and in that time I even brought him to kpop Mecka, South Korea itself. Having this man in my life has not changed the fact that I’m a kpop fan, but it has slightly altered how I am a kpop fan, and that’s what I’d like to discuss here today.
Being a girl that is no longer ‘searching’ for a significant other (Not that I really was, but I was open to the possibility. Now, of course, that door is shut.) has changed my outlook a lot. The amount of time I spend thinking of the hotness of random people is not completely eliminated, but it is drastically diminished, and that includes kpop idols. While I still appreciate a good-looking idol, that is now less of a factor when it comes to my enjoyment of them. (I know kpop fans like to say that it’s not about the looks, but we all know this is pretty aesthetic fandom.) Other things are now more central to my fan-ness, and this is especially evident when it comes to my relationship with my longterm biases.
Let’s take SHINee’s Jonghyun as an example, since he is my ultimate bias, and absolute favorite celebrity in the whole wide world. My soulmate. Ish. Before I met my boyfriend I had extensive fantasies about Jonghyun, mainly concerning how we would meet and fall in love. These were well-established and something I returned to often, like how I reread my favorite books over and over. Of course I knew deep down that this would never ever happen, and I was okay with that, but the fantasies were there. If I tried to do that now it would feel weird, wrong, and honestly not that appealing. Because in a fantasy like that I am of course, always single, so if I had those fantasies now I’d feel like I was daydreaming about breaking up with my man. Which is something I do not want.
So does this mean I do not love Jonghyun anymore? No, I do. I love him as much as I ever have. He is still a great singer, a talented artist, and as far as I can tell, a lovely man. I’d still do anything to meet him, but those daydreams no longer include me kissing him and him in response confessing his undying love, instead I’d just want to thank him for all his hard work, ask him some of those questions I’ve always wondered and maybe give him a hug, if that’s okay with him. Oh, and hopefully become lifelong friends. My affection for him is not diminished, but my sexual and romantic interest is no more.
Another thing that has changed in my fandomness is the proportion of male vs female idols that I find myself following. I have always been more into male idols, as I think is the case for most female kpop fans. I haven’t abandoned my male stars, but I find myself spending more time with my female stars than I ever have before, since these are not people I, in general, have ever been sexually or romantically attracted to.
Despite all this though, I am still a fangirl. And that does not make me a bad girlfriend. I still get emotional watching SHINee performances, and maybe even cry a bit, and I still occasionally watch Kai dance and get so hot and heavy I start hyperventilating. And that’s okay.