Celebrity crushes: they seem silly for teens, sad for adults, and flat out icky for happily married couples. And yet I'm here to say that engaging in a celebrity couple crush with your spouse is not only a good thing but also beneficial to your marriage. It's a reminder that maintaining a strong sense of individuality is an essential ingredient to a happy household. More on that later, but first we need to talk about the crush my wife and I have on Chris Martin and Gwyneth Paltrow.
Let's be clear here, our couple crush does not involve any kinky swinging fantasy. In fact when we kind of get creeped out when we hear other married people talking about how they'd leave their wedding band at home if they ever got to meet their dream celeb. So in the most platonic way possible, we are totally gaga for Mr. and Mrs. Martin-Paltrow. Yes, we spend an inordinate amount of time listening to Coldplay, watching various Paltrow flicks, and tracking them (in a completely non-stalkerish way) on celebrity gossip sites.
Why these two loveable folks? Well for one, they're both extremely talented. Despite the fact that Coldplay gets knocked for being lame or just plain square, their sound is original and their eccentric neon loving style seems befitting of rockstars who hail from the same country as David Bowie. And clearly other people dig them too as they've sold over 55 million albums, and have won a slew of Grammys and Brit Awards. I also really appreciate how Coldplay supports Oxfam and Amnesty International as well as other humanitarian organizations. Clearly they are aware of the power of spreading positive social change.
And what of Ms. Paltrow? She's got a pretty cool portfolio as well. As an actress she pays the bills with commercial successes like "Iron Man" but balances that out with indie hits like "Shakespeare in Love". She's got a blog, cookbook, and does some singing on the side too. And despite her recent errant tweet, she seems to be one of the few celebrities that's mastered keeping up a pretty positive image of herself. Let's not forget, this all in addition to being a mom and a wife.
I know what you're thinking, so what, you and your wife dig a celebrity couple, who cares? I do. As a married guy I think it's pretty awesome that two extremely talented individuals found a way to get together, celebrate each others' careers, and are doing their best to raise a family. What's to say they won't end up like Tom and Katie, Seal and Heidi or Britney and Kevin? The fact is I don't know. I have no clue how they balance work and family, how they carve out time away from paparazzi, or even what religion they've decided to raise Apple and Moses. But that's not really any of my business. With the lack of any relevant information, my wife and I have the luxury of transposing whatever idealized role model version we want onto them. We're also pretty confident that hanging out with them would make for the best date night ever -- even if it was just for a round of mini golf.
But stirring up caviar dreams isn't the only benefit of having a couple crush. I'd actually argue the real gain for you and your spouse is that the crush serves as a reminder to appreciate the superstar standing next to you as you fold the laundry and scrub the dishes. Sometimes as a couple, and later as a family unit, it's hard to find the "I" in your home team (especially if you're a stickler for spelling). And while having family time is great and healthy, it's good to remember that your marriage contract doesn't say anything about giving up on your dreams as an individual. It's easy to fall into the trap of feeling guilty for having some well deserved "me" time, but doing so should be a priority for the sake of everyone's sanity. Let's save the guilt trips for time wasted on trivial things like reading gossip about actresses and rock stars.