One of the great things about today’s society is that we’re expanding our definition of what a “normal family” looks like, and challenging the traditional belief that divorce always has to be a mean-spirited, soul-destroying affair. One of the major celebs to champion this change in our attitude to divorce was Goop guru Gwyneth Paltrow. When the Oscar-winning actress announced that she was separating from Coldplay frontman Chris Martin in March 2014, she was royally mocked for using the made-up term “conscious uncoupling” instead of just plain “divorce.”
But three years later, people are starting to realize that whatever “conscious uncoupling” is, it seems to be working. Over the weekend, Paltrow shared a very happy photo of her ex-husband and her new fiance, Brad Falchuk, having what appears to be a fairly idyllic afternoon. She captioned the photo, “Sunday brunch #modernfamily.” (And for more on your favorite celebrities, check out Alison Brie’s 5 Best Body Tips.)
Since the term became so famous, Paltrow has gone on to explain that “conscious uncoupling” is her way of trying to change our attitude to divorce.
“The ideal is to stay married. But if you can’t stay married, wouldn’t the ideal be that you could still be a family and you could put aside your own stuff long enough to explore—what is this new family and who am I in it?” Paltrow told Glamour in 2016. “And Chris is a great ex-husband ’cause he’s a very, very willing partner in how to do that. We’re constantly putting aside our own stuff and trying to reimagine something that we don’t personally have an example for.”
“To change the concept of divorce, we need to release the belief structures we have around marriage that create rigidity in our thought process,” Dr. Habib Sadeghi and Dr. Sherry Sami wrote on Goop. “If we can recognize that our partners in our intimate relationships are our teachers, helping us evolve our internal, spiritual support structure, we can avoid the drama of divorce and experience what we call a conscious uncoupling.”
The basic idea behind “conscious uncoupling” is that while you are no longer husband and wife, you are still a family.
We spend a lot of time together. He’s been away for two weeks [promoting Coldplay’s album A Head Full of Dreams]. Last night he got in at midnight and slept here so he could surprise the kids in the morning, we could all have breakfast, and he could take them to school,” Paltrow told Glamour. “So … we’re not living together, but he’s more than welcome to be with us whenever he wants. And vice versa: I sleep in his house in Malibu a lot with the kids. We’ll have a weekend all together; holidays, we’re together…We’re still very much a family, even though we don’t have a romantic relationship. He’s like my brother.”
In today’s world, this is just the #divorceinspo we need.
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