Recently, Jennifer Aniston’s latest rom-com “The Switch” (about a 40-something single woman who gets pregnant via artificial insemination) opened in 8th place at the box office to a disappointing 8.4 million. Surprising numbers, given the fact that anytime Aniston’s face graces a magazine cover – whether fashion or tabloid – copies fly off the shelves. The general consensus seems to be that the roles she plays too closely mirror her actual life, and that people are actually far more interested in her off-screen romances (or lack thereof).
So why is it that we’re so consumed with who Jennifer’s dating or getting dumped by? What makes our celeb-obsessed society set their watches to the ticking of her biological clock?
Perhaps, after so many years of watching her as Rachel, we feel like we’re “Friends” and want to see her find her Ross? Or could it be that, despite her enviable beauty, fame and fortune, Jennifer Aniston’s rollercoaster-ride of a love life makes us feel a little better about our own?
No matter why we buy US Weekly with the Brangelina cover story or tune into Access Hollywood to drink in the details of her latest rendezvous with John Mayer, there are some lessons we can learn from Jen’s less-than-fairy-tale love life.
1. SOMETIMES LOVE ISN’T ENOUGH
They were one of the most beautiful celebrity couples of all time: he, the Hollywood heartthrob and she, America’s sweetheart. Life was good for Brad and Jen, or at least that’s what we would believe from the glittering paparazzi photos of them gliding down the red carpet.
Then she came along.
In her 2006 interview with Vogue, Angelina Jolie swears that she and married Brad did not cheat while on the set of their movie “Mr. and Mrs. Smith,” but rather developed a friendship that would eventually become something more. But there was one inadvertent clue Jolie provided in that same interview that may shed some light on how Brad’s attention could be diverted from his wife. She said, “It was clear [Brad] was with his best friend, someone he loves and respects.” Sounds like a lovely sentiment, but it doesn’t exactly evoke images of fireworks.
No one but Brad and Jen knows for sure what went on behind the scenes, so to speak, in their marriage. But as an outsider looking in, we can learn the lesson that it’s crucial to work on keeping the passion alive in a long-term relationship. The comfort and stability that comes along with building a life with someone can be wonderful, but love alone can’t sustain a bond. The next time you think to yourself, “I can throw on my sweats again tonight – my partner won’t mind…” think twice. Maybe even ask yourself, “What would Angelina do?”