The internet all but broke recently, when reports came out that Channing and Jenna Dewan-Tatum decided to end their marriage. Fans were heartbroken and most were just plain shocked. This was a couple that people put on a pedestal; a love that people aspired to.
“If they can’t make it, there’s no chance for us” is a quote I’ve seen on multiple social media platforms in the last week.I can’t imagine trying to be in a relationship and having the weight of public pressure and opinion as a constant third party. I’d imagine it would be frustrating to have the world see you as a “perfect” situation when in reality no relationship is perfect.
Honestly, I think it’s pretty harmful to have such a pressure to be perfect, because when reality sets in and the relationship doesn’t live up to the idealized version, it might make you question it. I hope that’s not what happened for Jenna and Channing. Relationships take work, and if there’s a child involved, it takes even more work to balance the obligations of being a spouse and a parent.
Hollywood is notorious for not upholding the sanctity of marriage. People get married and divorced in a matter of years, or in some cases months. Given this landscape and what we’re used to seeing, we tend to idolize the relationship and marriages that do last.
We place couples like Emily Blunt and John Krasinski, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, and Chrissy Teigen and John Legend, on pedestals for making their marriages work. We really shouldn’t do that. While Hollywood is a different world to a degree, these couples deal with the same problems that everyone else does: petty arguments, trouble making time for one another, etc.
It isn’t fair to place ourselves in someone else’s marriage and pass judgment. When I heard about Channing and Jenna, my first thought was that I was sad (and that Step Up was ruined for me forever...) because they seemed happy, and they’ve made it through nine years of being married to each other, so why can’t they make it work? But, it’s not my place to ask those questions.
As a member of the public looking in on a brief statement released by the former couple, I don’t have enough information to make any sort of judgment, and I don’t have the right to know that information because I don’t know them.
People will say that celebrities have ‘signed up for this lifestyle’ and that they aren’t entitled to a private life. That’s ridiculous. They have graciously offered a window for us to see what’s it’s like to live in that world which serves our entertainment, but that’s where the line stops. They don’t owe us anything.
At the end of the day, it’s a sad situation. We shouldn’t make it worse by speculating or trying to invade their privacy. Being a public figure doesn’t negate their right to a private life, and we should respect that.