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Gwyneth Paltrow Opens Up About Why Her Marriage To Chris Martin Didn’t Work Out

And when she knew it was over

Their conscious uncoupling was arguably a cultural phenomenon and left many a broken heart in its wake. But now, Gwyneth Paltrow has opened up about what really brought about her divorce from Chris Martin. 

They were everyone’s favourite celebrity mum and dad, and even post-divorce have proved to be co-parenting goals with their amorous family hangouts and praise for each other. 

But, in a personal essay, the actress admitted that she knew her marriage to Martin was over three years before they actually called it quits in 2014. 

Back in 2011, when the couple were on an Italian getaway to celebrate her 38th birthday, she recalled feeling a sense of finality,

“I don’t remember which day of the weekend it was or the time of the day. But I knewdespite long walks and longer lie-ins, big glasses of Barolo and hands heldmy marriage was over”. 

However, she stuck it out for another few years, because the two “were so close”, explaining that she and Martin “had always been friends. We laughed a the same things, shared a funny bones humour, impressions, utter silliness. We were moved by the same qualities in music: beautiful chords, innovation, harmonies. Peter Gabriel, Chopin, Sigur Rósthough I listened for pleasure and he listened like he was studying for an exam”. 

Paltrow went on to open up something not being right from the start, “We just didn’t quite fit together. There was always a bit of unease and unrest”. 

gwyneth paltrow chris martin

The now 47-year-old reflected on how she wrestled with the end, trying to “push it far down” and convince herself that it was just “a fleeting thought”. But she knew the relationship was over and said that it felt “almost involuntary, like the ring of a bell that has sounded and cannot be undone”. 

It took years for her to say the words out loud. And, even when they both eventually realised that it was inevitable, they still tried for their children.

“We didn’t want to fail. We didn’t want to lose our family… But one day, despite all our efforts, I found that I was not at a fork in the road. I was well down a path. Almost without realising it, we had diverged. We’d never find ourselves together in that way again”. 

Something that plagued their decision was her innate fear of going through a divorce, something she had known to be “bitter, acrimonious and unending”, she wrote. And it was her therapist that introduced her to the landmark concept of a “conscious uncoupling,” something that to this day is still talked about. 

“I wondered, as impossible as it sounded, whether there was a way we could continue to feel the structure of our family on some level. Could we create a paradigm whereby we still ate meals together? Vacation, even? … But more than that, could my ex continue to be a family member, someone who would continue to protect me, want the best for me? Could I be that for him?” She asked. 

The now-famous term initially sounded “a bit full of itself”, “painfully progressive” and “hard to swallow,” however, they decided to try to maintain their family dynamic while not being a couple. 

And now, after a few years and a global empire later, she feels more at peace with the decision than ever. 

“I know my ex-husband was meant to be the father of my children, and I know my current husband is meant to be the person I grow very old with. Conscious uncoupling lets us recognise those two different loves can coexist and nourish each other”. 

In 2018 she married TV producer Brad Falchuk, who co-created The Politician, the Netflix show that Paltrow stars in, while Martin has been dating actress Dakota Johnson since 2017. 

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