Everyone is still reeling from Jenna Dewan Tatum and Channing Tatum’s split announcement. Why does love and marriage seem so darn hard to make last in Hollywood?
Luckily, love isn’t dead. There are still some Hollywood power couples going strong, and one of them is Joe Manganiello and Sofía Vergara — it seems they’ve got this marriage thing all figured out. Manganiello shared what really works for the two of them to stick together.
“[It’s] coming to grips with the idea that someone who is not related to you could possibly love you that much. She was it for me,” Manganiello explained to Cigar Aficionado. “People say things like, ‘Marriage and relationships are work.’ But it’s not. Life is hard. Having somebody to help you deal with it is the greatest thing that ever happened. Looking back on the relationships I had before this, I think the universe was giving me some tough practice so I’d get this right.”
It’s refreshing to hear Manganiello talk so openly about his marriage to Vergara since she’s usually the one giving fans a peek behind the curtain at their private life. He’s realized the support system that marriage has provided him was exactly what he was looking for but didn’t realize it until he met his wife.
Manganiello waited until he was 38 years old to get married for the first time, while Vergara was married at a young age, a relationship that lasted only three years. They came from two different places when it came to marriage, but they’ve been able to find a common ground that developed into a strong bond.
“We realized very early on that we each had to put the other person’s happiness and well-being ahead of our own,” he told Hola! USA. “Once you realize that kind of trust has manifested, you hang on for dear life. Or in my case, you go and buy a ring.”
Is Manganiello’s approach to marriage right? Well, yes and no. According to Beverly Hills family and relationship psychotherapist Dr. Fran Walfish (who is also the author of The Self-Aware Parent and regular expert child psychologist on The Doctors on CBS and costar on Sex Box on WE tv), Manganiello’s theory about marriage is spot on — but he’s wrong about it not being hard.
“Relationships are the single most complicated things to make work,” Walfish says. “You bring two people from two completely different families of origin, with different family dynamics, different personalities and egos together. There are bound to be disagreements and differences of opinion. The work involved is a combination of self-examination, self-awareness, accountability (owning up to your personal issues) and healthy, open, honest communication.”
And the Hollywood marital problem doesn’t always have to do with love — failed marriages are often consequences of ego and distance.
“Everyone has an ego, but Hollywood and its spotlight seem to attract people who have an extra tablespoon,” Walfish explains. “Filming schedules and geographical demands can add physical and emotional distance in relationships. Close proximity to others, including attractive costars and coworkers, when you are lonely or needy on the road coupled with an entitled personality may facilitate infidelity.”
In the end, Walfish says the most important thing for any couple to make a relationship work for the long haul is “a solemn commitment from two willing partners that ‘no matter what,’ they will hang in together and work out each hurdle that life throws their way.”
Luckily, it seems Manganiello and Vergara have figured that out.