Apparently Ms. Ryan also dated Russell Crowe, but I’m did the huh? when I heard about her and Indiana’s most famous curmudgeon rocker.
But it has got me thinking about some other unlikely couples. Whoopi and Ted Dansen? Lisa Marie and Jacko? Relationships are funny and where people find love is interesting to me.
I’m currently reading Tatum O’Neil’s biography. She said she called her ex-husband John McEnroe by his full name -even when they were married. She says they couldn’t be more different. In Canada the marriage of Playboy Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau and Margaret Sinclair was one for the books.
So why are we so fascinated about unlikely couples? Or is it just me? Is it Pygmalion ‘ My fair Lady” kind of thing when we want to reinvent someone? Is it the idea that even unseeingly couples are secretly twins?
As a sex therapist I understand sexual attraction. I also understand why opposites find themselves with someone they never considered before. I think people are most likely to find happiness with someone similar to themselves. But you can’t help who the heart speaks to. I just think you can go to your grave loving someone, but you might not be able to live with them.
So how do you know if someone might be right for you – even if they seem unlikely?
1. Same values. The party animal and the home body find something attractive in the other- but they rarely go the distance.
2. Either supportive or a distant family. It’s hard enough to bring up kids without having disparaging opinions on things like child rearing. So couples with grown kids, or who are simply supporting each other have the best chance for success.
3. Celebrate the differences in each other. You don’t try and change the uniqueness of your partner, you embrace it.
4. Look and work on similarities. Couples who develop new hobbies or emphasize what they have in common do far better than couples (even from the same backgrounds) who do things differently.
5. Keep the passion. If that’s what brought you together, then make it an absolute priority in your relationship.
6. Listen to people around you who love you, but realize that every relationship requires sacrifice. As long as you aren’t sacrificing who you really are.
So I wish Meg Ryan and John Melloncamp all the best. Maybe the fourth time is the charm.