Katy Perry and Russell Brand were married for less than two years before they decided to seperate. Picture REUTERS/Danny Moloshok
Katy Perry and Russell Brand were married for less than two years before they decided to seperate. Picture REUTERS/Danny Moloshok

Why celeb marriages never last

By STEVE DOUGHTY Time of article published Jan 7, 2016

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London - Their lifestyles are the envy of millions and they often spend a fortune on their weddings.

But for those who have long suspected that it doesn’t guarantee celebrities a fairlytale marriage, here’s the proof.

Their marriages are twice as likely to break down as those of everybody else, research claims.

Fifty percent of all famous or showbiz couples who married in the first decade of the century were divorced by 2014, according to the study.

A slew of A-list names did not make it even to their first anniversary and one, Britney Spears, managed two marriages that lasted less than four years between them.

By contrast, over the same period, 26 percent of marriages among the non-celebrity population failed to stay the course. The analysis by the Marriage Foundation Think-tank examined the record of 488 celebrity couples who married between 2001 and 2010 and how they were faring by 2014.

The findings are published today on what divorce lawyers say is the annual “divorce day” because of the claimed high numbers of couples who split up after Christmas, and consult lawyers on the first working Monday of January.

Sir Paul Coleridge, a former High Court family judge and the Think-tank’s founder, said: “Celebs become, no doubt involuntarily, high-profile role models.

“But this research shows that in their domestic lives these people experience even more pain and suffering than us lesser mortals, and in this respect at least their lives are not to be copied or envied. They are false icons who are subject to even greater pressures to separate.”

He added that the famous “may dazzle us with their £100 000 fairy story weddings, 15-tier cakes and horse-drawn carriages, but all too often these weddings are followed, in quick succession by a bitter and tortuous fallout and divorce played out in the public eye in grisly detail”.

Those who did not make it to the one-year mark include Drew Barrymore and Tom Green, Eminem and Kim Mathers, and Britney Spears and Jason Alexander. Miss Spears’s first marriage was annulled after only 55 hours. Her second – to Kevin Federline – lasted longer, but they were divorced after less than three years. Katy Perry and Russell Brand managed less than two years.

Couples who held out longest before divorce among the celebrity ranks include the “consciously uncoupled” Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin, whose marriage lasted nearly 11 years, and Nigella Lawson and Charles Saatchi, who managed ten years.

Celebrities are over six times more likely to divorce in their first year of marriage than others, the study found. Even after the initial period of adapting to married life, they appear more vulnerable to the stresses that can tear a couple apart. More than a quarter of celebrity couples were divorced after six years of marriage, compared with just over one in ten among others.

Current divorce rates suggest that an average couple have a 38 percent chance of divorce within their lifetimes. Celebrities, however, have a 38 percent chance of divorce within ten years.

Famous couples who avoided divorce over the period covered by the study and are still together include Aled Jones and Claire Fossett, Gabby and Kenny Logan, and Pierce Brosnan and Keely Shaye Smith. All married in 2001.

Sir Paul added: “Behind too many of these high-profile family breakdowns sits a set of confused and distressed children who have felt the two tectonic plates of their lives pulled apart under the full scrutiny of the media.”

Daily Mail

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