Everybody says marriage is hard, but rarely does anyone elaborate on the challenges and how to handle them—especially celebrity couples. Enter Will Smith. The husband, father, Oscar-nominated actor, and former Fresh Prince of Bel-Air just got refreshingly honest about his relationship with wife of 19 years, Jada Pinkett Smith.
The secret to making it through the muck that might come after the I do's? Marriage counseling, Will said in an interview with The Sun, revealing that he and Jada have done "a lot" of it.
"What happens in a marriage once you do counseling, the truth comes out," Will said. "And you sit across from your wife and you've said all of your truth and she has said all of her truth. You look at each other and you can't imagine you could ever possibly love each other again now the truth is out."
But don't go canceling the wedding quite yet. Thankfully, he continued, that "dark moment" is only "the dark before the dawn." "When the truth comes out and people have to say who they are and what they think, you get to know who they are."
And who they are might change from the time you exchange vows. Jada and Will married at ages 26 and 29 years, respectively, on New Years Eve, 1997, and now, they're going on almost two decades and have two kids, Willow and Jaden. "Thank God I have a husband who is just a gangster partner," Jada exclaimed in an interview with Howard Stern last year, "because can you imagine taking that road together from 25 to 44? Woo!"
They've had their share of ups and downs, though, including divorce rumors and claims that they have an open marriage. "You gotta trust who you're with, and at the end of the day, I'm not here to be anybody's watcher," Jada said, addressing the speculation. "I'm not his watcher. He's a grown man … I trust that the man that Will is is a man of integrity. HE's got all the freedom in the world, and as long as Will can look at himself in the mirror and be OK, I'm good."
Now that's what we call trust. Will has confessed in the past that marriage is "the most grueling, excruciating thing we have ever taken on," but also that "we're just not quitters."
And for them, counseling gets the credit for helping them survive. "I think that's the cleansing before you get to the other side that is understanding and moving forward in our relationship," he said.