Monogamy isn’t for everyone, and these celebrities in open relationships show that, for some couples, non-monagamous relationships work better.
In an interview with The New York Times in 2020, Shailene Woodley revealed that she’s been in a closed and an open relationship before and that both have worked for her. “Listen, I’m someone who has experienced both an open relationship and a deeply monogamous relationship in my life, and I think we’re in a day and age where there should be no rules except for the ones designed by two people in a partnership—or three people, whatever floats your boat!” she said. “But there has to be a level of responsibility in any relationship dynamic, and that responsibility is simply honesty and communication and trust. Apart from that, it’s really none of our business what people choose to do with their lives.”
When Brad Pitt first dated Nicole Poturalski in 2020, the model was also in an open marriage with her husband, restauranteur Roland Mary. “They are still married, but you could describe their relationship as an ‘open marriage,’” a source told The Daily Mail at the time, noting that Mary wasn’t “interested in negativity or jealously” when it came to his wife’s relationship with Pitt, whom he introduced her to at one of his restaurants in Berlin.
Ahead are more celebrity couples who have been in open relationships—or are still in them.
Will Smith & Jada Pinkett
In a 2013 interview with Huffington Post, Jada revealed that she and Will are in an open relationship. “I’ve always told Will, ‘You can do whatever you want as long as you can look at yourself in the mirror and be okay,’” she said at the time. “Because at the end of the day, Will is his own man. I’m here as his partner, but he is his own man. He has to decide who he wants to be and that’s not for me to do for him. Or vice versa.” Will and Jada’s open relationship went viral in 2020 when singer August Alsina revealed that he dated Jada while she and Will were still married. In an interview on Jada’s Facebook Watch talk show, Red Table Talk, at the time, the Gotham star revealed that she dated Alsina when she and Will were broken up for a short period of time. “You and I were going through a very difficult time,” Jada told Will. “I was done with yo’ ass,” Will said. “We basically…we broke up,” she said. “We decided that we were going to separate for a period of time and you go figure out how to make yourself happy. And I’ll figure out how to make myself happy,” Will said.
Dolly Parton & Carl Dean
Parton met her husband, Carl Dean, at a laundromat in Nashville when she was 18 and he was 21. They married in 1966. According to Life & Style, Parton has talked about how she and her husband have an open relationship. The only rule is that they don’t talk to each other about it.
“If we cheat we don’t know it, so if we do cheat, it’s very good for both us,” she said.. “I don’t want to know it, if he’s cheating on me. If I’m cheating on him, he wouldn’t want to know it. And if we do, if that’s what’s making it work, then that’s fine too.”
Mo’Nique & Sidney Hicks
Mo’Nique married her husband, actor and producer Sidney Hicks, in 2006. In a 2006 interview with Essence, Mo’Nique revealed that she and her husband had an open relationship.
“A lot of people have asked what does it mean. Initially, when I asked for it, it was because I wanted to continue to see the gentlemen that I was seeing, and I felt comfortable telling my best friend,” Mo’Nique recalled of the interview in an episode of her podcast, “Open Relationship,” in 2016. so when I sat down and said this is what I want initially it was because I wanted to still have sex with who I was seeing and I didn’t want it to be where I was keeping anything from my best friend. That’s how it initially started, and when I tell you the conversations that we’ve had, it has taken me to a different place where I’m not even thinking of another man sexually, but still open to it.”
Shirley MacLaine & Steve Parker
MacLaine married Parker, a producer, in 1954. The couple divorced in 1982, but MacLaine revealed in an interview with People in 2016 that her marriage lasted so long because she and her then-husband had an open relationship. “I guess you would say ‘practiced an open marriage’ in 1954, which was another lifetime,” she said at the time. “No one understood it, we did. He lived in Japan basically, I lived in America working, and this and that.”
“I think that’s the basis for a long-lasting marriage if you really want to do such a thing,” she continued. “I would say better to stay friends and we don’t have enough time to talk about the sexuality of all. I was very open about all of that and so was he.”
Nico Tortorella & Bethany C. Meyers
Tortorella, an actor on Younger, revealed in an interview with Cosmopolitan in 2016 that they were in a “queer polygamous” relationship with their spouse Bethany C. Meyers. “My cheating philosophy…I mean, cheating is bad, right? But I think that an open relationship or a polyamorous relationship or an understanding of sorts is acceptable in this day and age,” Tortorella said at the time. “And I’ve been in those relationships and sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t. But cheating inherently is a terrible thing. If you’re going behind the other person’s back and if there’s any type of malice, you’re a bad person, end of story.”