Gwyneth Paltrow's (Not-So-Feminist) Advice for a Happy Marriage

The actress revealed her secret in the March issue of Harper's Bazaar

Gwyneth Paltrow, a Hollywood anomaly who’s managed to maintain a happy, scandal-free marriage for eight years and counting, has advice to share on achieving domestic harmony. “It may not be feminist,” she warns.

The 39-year-old told Harper’s Bazaar that, for now, she’s scaled back on her career.

“I have little kids in school. I want to maintain my marriage and my family, so I have to be here when he comes home.”

Her husband Chris Martin, the lead singer of Coldplay, is currently planning a world tour while Gwenyth holds down the home and pursues less daunting projects (compared to her more rigorous 90s acting career, that is). 

At the top of the list is goop, her lifestyle website that advises subscribers on where to go and what to do and what to eat and get. She has two cookbooks out, ate and talked her way through Spain with Mario Batali for a PBS show, and squeezes in time each day to hone her flexibility, strength and digestive perfection. (You can see the result of this physical regiment in the March issue of Harper's, which features the all-legs actress in a series on ab and leg and thigh-revealing poses.)

But the main focus, she said, is on Martin and her two children: Apple, 7, and Moses, 5. She cooks them dinner, she bathes them, she shuttles them to school.

In the interview, she recounts advice she gave an unnamed Hollywood friend who’s married to some other mystery man with an also huge career.

“You have to compromise,” she said. “It’s been all about you and you’re a big deal. And if you want what you’re saying you want —a family—you have to be a wife, and that is part of the equation. Gloria Steinem may string me up by my toes, but all I can do is my best, and I can do only what worlds for me and my family.”

To be fair, Martin’s compromising too. He’ll have 10-day family breaks scheduled into his world tour. And she notes that no relationship—not even hers—is perfect.

“I think you do fall in and out of love and you just keep going, and every time you go through a really difficult phase, you rediscover something new and it just gets better,” she added. “We’ve been married for more than eight years now, and we’re still into it.”

Before Martin, Paltrow dated other stars like Brad Pitt (to whom she was briefly engaged) and Ben Affleck. She notes that she has been cheated on (doesn’t mention by whom) and explains that back then she was naïve.

“The older I get, the more open-minded I get, the less judgmental I get.  Life is long,” she said. “I have friends who have had an affair. When I was younger I would have said he’s a terrible person or she’s a terrible person. But who made these laws?”

A marriage, she believes, can be reworked and renewed.

Selected Reading: Harper's Bazaar

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