Summer is a time for fun, flirting and romance. And according to the tabloids and celebrity blogs that many of us guiltily read, it's also a time for broken engagements, lawsuits and unplanned pregnancies. Hmm...how many days until September, again??
Not to fear. The voyeuristically emotional rollercoaster ride of this season's most talked-about celeb couplings - and de-couplings - has not been in vain. Mel, Bristol, Jude & Co. are playing out every kiss, fight and court battle in public so that we can learn from their PDA successes and embarrassing mistakes (I'm sure they're all very excited about this public offering of theirs). There are some real-life romantic lessons to be gained from all this gossip fodder!
So what are they? Let's roll out the red carpet of love and educate ourselves...
Jessica Simpson and Eric Johnson - Who says that men aren't attracted to powerful, successful women? Rumor has it that soon-to-be-divorced (let's hope?) ex-NFL player and Yalie Eric has given up his plans to attend UPenn's prestigious Wharton business school in order to focus on his relationship with Jessica. We're also hearing whispers that he's a little low on cash and has no problem letting Jessica buy her own engagement ring. Her Texas girl act may seem traditional, but Jessica could finally be learning to embrace her strong, modern femininity and call some of the shots in her relationship.
Lesson: Don't assume that men will be intimidated by your success. Our generation of guys is becoming more and more comfortable with switching up the typical gender roles and accepting that you might just be the breadwinner. This especially holds true if you also happen to be blond and busty.
Jude Law and Sienna Miller - After reconnecting in New York last year, these two formerly-engaged lovebirds have recently been spotted celebrating their renewed relationship all over England, Italy, and Spain. Hand-in-hand, mouth-to-mouth, bikini-on-bikini...who knows if it will last, but they look pretty happy and sexy in the meantime!
Lesson: If you can't seem to get over your ex and still find yourself thinking longingly of him after years of separation, maybe you should give it another try. People may not change, but they certainly grow and are capable of learning from their mistakes. True connection can be hard to find! So even if your relationship crashes and burns (again), that might be preferable to wondering if you've missed your shot with the love of your life.
Bristol Palin and Levi Johnston - Estranged, back together and shopping reality shows, and then broken up again. Throw in a music video that may or may not mock your almost-in-laws, and I think I speak for the general population when I say that Bristol and Levi's relationship is almost too outlandish - and immature - to believe. Any chance that we're done hearing about them yet?
Lesson: Jude and Sienna aside - usually, when it's broke, it's not worth fixing. Even when there are kids involved. Maybe even especially when there are kids involved. And certainly when there's a Playgirl shoot involved.
Katy Perry and Russell Brand - Once a player, always a player? It's a little too early to tell in the case of Katy and Russell. But we do know that she helped him overcome his sex addiction, which will hopefully lay dormant as long as she continues to provide him with "an orgasm every 15 or 16 minutes." And that a little romantic publicity never hurt movie ticket and iTunes single sales.
Lesson: Players can be reformed! Maybe. We'll see.
Mel Gibson and Oksana Grigorieva - Oh god, where to begin? Actually, let's not.
Lesson: Don't be a raging psychopath and expect to be forgiven just because Braveheart was an incredible movie. And don't date and/or have a child with a raging psychopath and expect that you'll be paid in full for your time without a fight.
For more insight into the post-dating world, head over to www.WTFIsUpWithMyLoveLife.com.
Follow Jessica Massa on Twitter: www.twitter.com/jessmassa