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What not to do: Textbook toxic masculinity from Demi Lovato's ex-fiancé

Demi Lovato is an award-winning artist and actress, known for her Disney channel roles in "Sonny With a Chance" and "Camp Rock."  – Photo by Wikimedia

The recent actions of Demi Lovato’s ex-fiancé Max Ehrich are reminiscent of a much larger problem among toxic men in general. His Instagram posts about their relationship and public accusations toward Lovato illustrate a very vindictive personality, and the situation is made worse due to her fame and celebrity status.

Their relationship only lasted seven months, but it was enough for Ehrich to become extremely public and dramatic with his emotions and actions. His transition from a fiancé to a toxic ex has come with a lot of red flags and questionable decisions. 

Despite their feelings not being mutual, Ehrich has tried on multiple occasions to get in touch with Lovato’s friends and family, who have him blocked on all platforms. This is a red flag because a relationship should emphasize the importance of boundaries and equal communication.

If someone doesn't wish to see you, you should respect their space and wishes. Since celebrities are constantly dehumanized by media outlets, it makes us forget that these people are human and feel emotions in the same way we do. Lovato has been forced to contact lawyers to advise her on legal actions she should take against Ehrich.

Ehrich has also taken to social media to publicly share his heartbreak online. His recent posts include sharing posts that compare him to Jeffrey Epstein and accusing Lovato’s fans of bullying him.

His most public public relations stunt saw Ehrich return to the beach where he proposed to Lovato with paparazzi and crying to publicly relieve his anguish.

While everyone deals with grief differently, these public displays of emotions and posts are less about him dealing with the state of his breakup and more about him embarrassing Lovato and harming her reputation to gain sympathy for himself in the public eye.

It creates publicity for himself and paints Lovato in an unfavorable light without her even having to respond.

His actions shine a light on the unhealthy effects of masculinity and the inability of men to accept rejection. The act of being rejected by a woman and deliberately entering their space in spite of that reveals a lack of awareness and self-control.

Much in the same way men who catcall women quickly become angered when they get called out on it, Ehrich’s actions are only amplified by Lovato’s status as a public figure and his lack of respecting her boundaries as a woman.

It sets a precedent for fans of Ehrich, who might start to model his behavior and believe that acting this way is an acceptable response toward a breakup.

Ehrich is most definitely in the wrong with his recent actions, and making public pleas for your former wife-to-be to take him back usually signifies that the future of the relationship is over.

What makes his actions even more disappointing is that in his eyes, he likely sees his actions as completely reasonable. Not a single person on his team has advised him against acting this way toward Lovato.

While the public mostly doesn't side with Ehrich, his actions have been generating a lot of free publicity for himself. People tend to value publicity more than the mental health of who they are affecting with their actions, and this situation is a clear example.

If he truly cared about Lovato, he would handle this situation privately while involving her family. Instead, he chooses to make everything theatrical and public, which places an intense spotlight on both parties.

Ehrich is the textbook definition of a man who does not know how to properly deal with his emotions. It's disappointing to witness a public figure act out in such a childish way, and it is even more hurtful that Lovato has to deal with the repercussions of his actions.

He's setting a terrible example for his fans, and his actions highlight the dangerous effects of masculinity and free publicity.

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