Harry Styles addresses online abuse aimed at his girlfriend Olivia Wilde

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Harry Styles has responded to the criticism his girlfriend Olivia Wilde has received on the internet since the two began dating in early 2021.

The 28-year-old singer opened up about the negative response some fans have had to his personal life, including the people he chooses to date. In the cover story for Rolling Stone published on 22 August, Styles described Twitter as “a s***storm of people trying to be awful to people,” and discussed the pressure his fame has placed on some of his close relationships.

“That obviously doesn’t make me feel good,” he said. “It’s obviously a difficult feeling to feel like being close to me means you’re at the ransom of a corner of Twitter or something. I just wanted to sing. I didn’t want to get into it if I was going to hurt people like that.”

While Styles says he’s set a boundary between his public and personal life, the former One Direction member admitted that sometimes “other people blur the lines for you”.

As one of the world’s most famous performers, dating comes with its challenges as well. Styles added: “Can you imagine going on a second date with someone and being like, ‘Okay, there’s this corner of the thing, and they’re going to say this, and it’s going to be really crazy, and they’re going to be really mean, and it’s not real…But anyway, what do you want to eat?’”

The “As It Was” singer has been in a relationship with Olivia Wilde, 38, since he was cast in her upcoming psychological thriller, Don’t Worry Darling. The director spoke about being the subject of online negativity, but described the collective of Styles’ supporters as “deeply loving people”.

“What I don’t understand about the cruelty you’re referencing is that that kind of toxic negativity is the antithesis of Harry, and everything he puts out there,” Wilde told Rolling Stone. “I don’t personally believe the hateful energy defines his fan base at all. The majority of them are true champions of kindness.”

Harry Styles and Olivia Wilde first met on the set of their film Don’t Worry Darling back in September 2020, and were spotted holding hands at a wedding for the singer’s manager in January 2021. The news came as a surprise to fans, considering Wilde had separated from her ex Jason Sudeikis just two months before she was photographed with Styles. Wilde and Sudeikis were together for over a decade and share two children together – son Otis, eight, and daughter Daisy, five.

Since taking their relationship public, the Booksmart director has faced a slew of criticism from Styles’ fans online. Many social media users criticised the couple for their ten-year age gap, and called out Wilde for their “director-actor dating dynamic”.

Earlier this year, Wilde subtly addressed the criticism and public attention her relationship has received when she posed as Vogue’s January 2022 cover star. “It’s obviously really tempting to correct a false narrative,” Wilde said at the time. “But I think what you realise is that when you’re really happy, it doesn’t matter what strangers think about you. All that matters to you is what’s real, and what you love, and who you love.”

“In the past ten years, as a society, we have placed so much more value on the opinion of strangers rather than the people closest to us,” she added. “I’m happier than I’ve ever been. And I’m healthier than I’ve ever been, and it’s just wonderful to feel that.”