Let me start this off with a disclosure. As far as shipping goes, I love Ron and Hermione together. I thought they balanced each other wonderfully. She needed someone with a good sense of humor and he needed someone to bring out his responsible side. As for who Harry ended up with, I was always okay with Ginny. I liked that both Harry and Hermione ended up officially joining the Weasley family with their mates.
I never got into the shipping wars. I kept to my Ron/Hermione fanfiction sites and never traveled very far beyond that. Even though we won’t know until Friday what JK Rowling truly thinks about the Ron/Hermione pairing, I have been trying to figure out just why I was so upset by the possibility of her regret. Chloe Angyal wrote an interesting piece for “Thought Catalog” that helped put a lot of things in perspective.
Maybe it’s because I was never big in the shipping wars. I never was “Team Harry” or “Team Ron.” I knew there were Harry/Hermione shippers out there, just like I knew that I was a Ron/Hermione shipper. I never saw it as a war, though. Maybe that is my fandom naivete, but I always imagined this happy bubble where everyone could exist together.
The Harry Potter series was never about the relationships for me. At least not the romantic ones. I never dreamed for a great romance like the one Ron and Hermione had in my mind. What I wanted was the friendships. I wanted the friendship between Ron, Hermione, and Harry. All of them brought something unique to the table. Without one of them, the group just did not function as well. Harry had the brave nobility. Hermione had the brains. And Ron reminded them all why they needed to lighten up once in a while.
The thing that upsets me the most about this resurgence of the shipping wars, though, is that it seems so much like a Twilight thing. In the Twilight series, it made sense for there to be Team Edward and Team Jacob. The entire series was built around a love triangle. Harry Potter was better than that. There was never a love triangle in the story. I just do not know why there needs to be one now.
These kids were too busy fighting a war to worry about who was snogging who. I loved that the things to test the trio’s friendship had nothing to do with relationships. Yes, they occasionally delved into romance, but it was always a side plot. The one time that a love triangle truly seemed to rear its ugly head was in Half-Blood Prince during that awful Ron/Hermione/Lavender fiasco. While I enjoyed the dramatic fanfiction that resulted from it, I just wanted the actual story to focus on how these three friends were going to help save the wizarding world.
Most of all, though, I always thought Hermione was a character above love triangles. I admired her for being the character who was most often vital to the team. Face it, Harry and Ron would have died in their first year if it wasn’t for Hermione saving them. I loved that she never needed a romantic companion. Even when she was upset over Ron, she was still an amazing witch who could cast spells better than anyone else her age. She never needed Ron to make her powerful. She never needed Harry to swoop in and save her. She was a witch who could save her own ass. Yes, all three of them helped save the others at one time or another, but Hermione was never the damsel in distress.
For the past weekend, it seems like anyone can talk about is who Hermione married. Maybe she and Ron would be in couples counseling now. Frankly, they probably both have PTSD and could use some therapy. Maybe they broke up. Maybe Hermione ran off with Harry. Hell, maybe Hermione ran off with Luna. The point is, that focusing on nothing but who Hermione married takes away all of the most interesting things about her character.
In my mind, Hermione is the Hillary Clinton of the wizarding world. She is kicking ass and taking names. She is fighting for equality. She is developing new spells every day. She is doing this all while raising two kids. At the end of the day, Hermione doesn’t need anyone by her side. She can take care of herself.