Sex & Relationships

How to Not Screw Up Your Marriage: Advice from Famous Women

Illustration by LiSun Francisco

After the wedding, the whole “Til Death Do Us Part” promise can start to seem like a long time. So how do you keep that everlasting love on track? The Plunge previously asked male celebrities  for their advice on making their off-screen relationship work, the biggest takeaway being: “Happy wife, happy life.” To make good on that premise, we asked some female celebrities to explain what made their relationships last. 

Who: Shay Mitchell


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Famous For: The “You” and “Pretty Little Liars” star has a social media following of 25 million who will hopefully tune in for her new unscripted YouTube series, “Almost Ready.”

Her Partner: Mitchell has been open about the trials and tribulations of getting pregnant, while keeping her relationship to Canadian journalist Matte Babel mostly under wraps. 

Her Relationship Advice: Don’t be a suck-up

“Respect first and foremost, and balance,” she says. “We’re not completely codependent on each other, and I think that’s what’s always worked for me. We’re like two pillars holding up something, and I like that.” 


Who: Cara Delevingne


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Famous For: The British model-turned-actress, best known for “Suicide Squad” and “Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets” currently stars with Orlando Bloom in “Amazon’s Carnival Row.”

Her Partner: Delevingne recently sparked rumors of marriage to “Pretty Little Liars” star Ashley Benson. 

Her Relationship Advice: Set yourself up to succeed

“The work really goes on when you’re in the best place, I think,” she says. “In all these love stories, people reach this bad moment because they haven’t put in the work when it had been good. So, it’s all about work – good work, fun work!”


Who: Lake Bell


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Famous For: The actor/writer/director is currently starring on ABC’s fish out of water marital comedy “Bless this Mess,” which she also co-created. 

Her Partner: Bell has been married since 2013 to artist Scott Campbell and they have two children together. 

Her Relationship Advice: Therapy

“Anybody who’s like, ‘Yeah, therapy is not for me,’ I think, is not on the right path,” she tells us. “I don’t think you have to be deep in a relationship in order to benefit from therapeutic help. I’m not even talking about couples’ therapy, I’m talking about singularly taking care of thyself. That’s the core difference between success and failure. Whether your therapy falls under the lines of self-care, yoga, meditation or your own hobbies that you still honor, it’s about taking care of yourself in order to be a unit successfully.”


Who: Ginnifer Goodwin


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Famous For: Adults know her as Margene on “Big Love,” kids as Snow White on “Once Upon a Time.” In between, Goodwin’s honed her rom-com skills on films like, “He’s Just Not That Into You” and “Something Borrowed.”

Her Partner: Goodwin met her Prince Charming, literally, on the set of “Once Upon a Time.” She married her costar Josh Dallas in 2014 and the two have expanded their brood with two little ones. 

Her Relationship Advice: Communication, communication, communication

“In our case, my husband works in New York six months a year, and the only thing I appreciate about the iPhone, really, is the fact that we can FaceTime 400 times a day,” she says. “Which again is about communication. So yeah, a hell of a lot of forgiveness and flexibility and honesty. And probably not going to bed angry.”


Who: Kirsten Dunst


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Famous For: Dunst broke out at the age of 11 in “Interview with a Vampire” opposite Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt and has been tackling every kind of genre since, from lead roles in “Bring It On,” to “Spiderman,” to “The Virgin Suicides.” 

Her Partner: In 2015, while shooting the television series “Fargo,” Dunst met “Breakin Bad” star Jesse Plemons. A year later, life started imitating art (well, murder aside) and the on-screen couple took their relationship off-screen. The two have been engaged since late 2017 and share son Ennis. 

Her Relationship Advice: Be a BFF

“I think you have to have your best friend,” says Dunst. “I do.”


Who: Patricia Heaton


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Famous For: For nine years, Heaton made her mark as Ray Romano’s no-nonsense on-screen wife Debra on “Everybody Loves Raymond.” Afterwards she spent nine years on “The Middle” married to Neil Flynn. Her next sitcom, “Carol’s Second Act,” is all about her.  

Her Partner: Off-screen, the mother of four has been married to British actor David Hunt since 1990.

Her Relationship Advice: Don’t divorce

“I want to quote George Harrison’s wife who said, ‘The key to making your marriage last, is not getting divorced.’ That’s kind of it. If that’s not on the table, then your marriage will last because you will be forced to work things out.”


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