Abbie Chatfield doesn't owe us her personal life.

Over the weekend, Abbie Chatfield told us what we already pretty much knew – she had split with her boyfriend of 10 months, Konrad Bien-Stephen. 

We "knew" because for the duration of their relationship, it felt like we followed every step of the way via what they posted online. 

Abbie would discuss their sex life candidly on her radio show, Hot Nights With Abbie, we got a full reel of the first time Konrad said "I love you", and you could fill a photo album with their selfies. 

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The point being, we had a significant insight into their love story, so when those posts dried up, we noticed. 

Now, it’s been confirmed – but Abbie has a bone to pick with how this has all played out.

Posting to her Instagram Stories over the weekend, Abbie called out the media and fans for their intrusiveness. 

"Please don’t come up to me and ask me why, I’m not going to tell you, you’re a stranger," she said, addressing fans that asked her about Konrad when they spotted her out in public. 


In another Instagram Story, she criticised opinion pieces for putting words in hers and Konrad’s mouths to form a story. In short, she was sick of speculation and nosiness on a topic she really didn’t want to share.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this over the weekend (lol, can you tell) and I feel like Abbie is at the forefront of a problem we’re grappling with in this new, weird world where the most famous and engaging people feel like they’re our best friends. 

There was this time where celebrities operated on this higher plane of existence. You saw paparazzi pics of them and could only access their worlds via (usually untrue) gossip or carefully curated interviews. 

Now, we have people like Abbie – everyone’s fun, cool "friend" you want to meet for drinks because you know she’ll always have a wild story or the perfect take on that pop culture moment. We get this level of access to her because she instantly and candidly shares a lot about her life with us.

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The thing is, she seems like our friend, but she’s not our friend. And now she has 400,000 people on social media that feel entitled to know about her life. 

"Please don’t DM me saying you’re sad or devastated, that you don’t believe in love anymore," Abbie said on her Stories yesterday. 

Okay, sure – Abbie created this. Her relatable online persona is what has led to her astronomical success. Without sharing candidly, she likely wouldn’t have her hyper-engaged fanbase. Without the fanbase, would she have the stellar career she has right now? No, she wouldn’t. 


But even if it’s the fans that give her the ability to launch sell-out fashion lines, that doesn’t make her a commodity we just get to consume. And yet that’s exactly how we treat influencers, especially influencers and content creators like Abbie who share facets of their lives with us.

I remember US influencer Stephanie Yeboah discussing this last year. She had a huge following of single women who found comfort in her dating struggles and single-yet-thriving lifestyle. When she found love, a lot of them messaged her to express their disappointment. They were happy for her, but they didn’t want to follow her anymore – and for some reason, they wanted to let her know that. 

Stephanie shared some of these messages. What was this bizarre narrative where Stephanie living her life had let her fans down? Why was she being made to feel bad about her relationship status?


We’re living in a world where access to celebrities has never been greater, and that means they’re faced with more feedback than ever before. Feedback not just on their content, or talent – but literally on their life. We actually tell these people how disappointed we are when they veer away from who we like them to be. 

We think it’s hypocritical that Abbie Chatfield talks candidly about sex, her body, the struggles in her life but then lashes out when attention turns to her breakup. What we’re forgetting is that any life insight she gives us is her choice. She could literally shut down her Instagram tomorrow, and that would be her prerogative. It’s like we’ve forgotten that these creators aren’t living out their lives for our benefit – we’re just aligning with them at times, but life is an ebb and flow and we all shift and change. 

When Stephanie Yeboah fell in love, it was confronting for many of her followers because, wait, this isn’t what I follow Stephanie for! How dare she enter a new stage of life and change up her content!


We’d never treat our actual friends like this. We would never ask them invasive questions about topics they clearly seem uncomfortable about, or tell them our blunt opinions like, "You and your ex were a better match" or "I can’t be friends with you now. You’ve got a boyfriend, and it upsets me". 

This isn’t a big Abbie-stan opinion piece. It’s not really about Abbie at all. We’re heading down a really toxic road where we demand more and more from these people we follow, like that awful spoilt kid in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory who throws tantrums all the time. The one who turned into a blueberry. We’ve lost the plot, and it’s making social media a really ugly place.

I don’t think this article is going to change lives but even if it makes you think twice before you type that message to someone you follow online, it’s done its job. 

Treat people like people. If you’re thinking about commenting on someone’s post or DMing them, remember that they’re human. Don’t put obligations on anyone to share what’s personal. 

And honestly sometimes - and this absolutely goes for me as well - we just need to shut the hell up.

Melissa Mason is a freelance writer. You can find her on Instagram and Twitter.

Feature Image: Instagtram/@abbiechatfield.

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