Love Lessons Ripped from the Headlines
Here's the thing: We're conditioned to believe that love should hit us over
the head like a thunderbolt and be punctuated with a trail of red roses. But
the true lifeblood of a relationship isn't the jewelry and flower arrangements,
it's the day-to-day mundane activities that make up a shared life.
No one's saying that you shouldn't cherish all the presents and romantic
surprises your partner gives you. But there's a difference between over-the-top
romance, which can't be sustained, and the sweet gestures that truly stand the
test of time -- such as the way Pierce Brosnan reportedly brings wife Keely
Shaye Smith breakfast in bed with a single flower from their garden every
After all, anyone can pick out diamonds or a dozen roses, but a guy who
holds your head when you're sick, picks up your favorite ice cream from the
store "just because," and has a solid track record of good behavior to
boot -- he's really the one.
#3: Steer Clear of Other Couples That Behave Badly
In retrospect, perhaps Denise and Charlie weren't the best double-date
partners for Heather Locklear and Richie Sambora.
Although dinner and a movie with a couple experiencing marital difficulties
doesn't necessarily mean you'll end up in a real-life version of Wife
Swap, remember that conduct -- both good and bad -- can be contagious.
"Couples should spend quality time with people who are living healthy
emotional lives so they can bounce role modeling off of each other," says
Carle. That doesn't mean hanging out only with people who think and act exactly
like you do -- how boring would that be? But while the Pamela Anderson and Kid
Rock of your social circle might be great to party with on margarita night,
you'd be wise to also find a Paul Newman/Joanne Woodward pair to model your
romantic life after.
#4: Don't Jump into Marriage Too Fast
Whether we're talking about Vegas mistakes (à la Britney Spears or Nicky
Hilton) or ephemeral unions we're still trying to make sense of (Renée
Zellweger and Kenny Chesney, anyone?), celebrities seem more eager than the
rest of us to rush down the aisle.