Why is that? Because their managers think that the relationships will "adversely affect" their images, as if having a boyfriend/girlfriend is something that one should be ashamed of.
I would guess that only Chinese people have such thinking; have you ever heard any Hollywood star hiding his/her lover in order to maintain his/her popularity? Correct me if I'm wrong, but I've never known of anything like that in the Western culture.
This thinking is kind of absurd to me. Whether I like a star/artist depends on if s/he can
- sing well
- act well
- dance well
- make people laugh
- and various other skills related to the entertainment industry
Actually, this "secret relationship" attitude isn't only present among Chinese celebrities. Quite a number of my Chinese friends regard their relationship status as highly confidential matters.
No, I'm not talking about the details of the relationship (my boyfriend took me to that romantic restaurant called XXX on the Valentine's day two years ago). I'm just talking about whether one's is in a relationship.
I've seen more than one pair of a guy and a girl going out together the zillionth time and still denying that they're a couple. Whether or not they really are a couple doesn't bother me, I've no interest in that. What bothers me is that it is a secret, or, perhaps more appropriate, a taboo; it is something that no one should talk about.
Why are people doing that? One incentive is to keep their choices open by always being "kind of" single. I wonder how the other person feel about this: this guy "kind of" admits that you're his girlfriend but he doesn't declare it publicly since he may find a better girl than you. Unless you're also looking for a better guy, that should feel pretty awful.
One time, my girl friend was asked where her boyfriend was since he wasn't with her. I knew that she just broke up with her boyfriend not long ago and it should have caused great pain to her because she had been in that relationship for many years.
Naturally, I assumed she would respond with standard answers like "Oh he's not free today" or "He has to work today". However, she directly admitted that
"I've broken up with him."
Confident and frank. Even some of the guys I know couldn't do that.
Whether you are in a relationship or not, it doesn't really matter. It does matter if you cannot face your own history, or, yourself.