It seems that most of the imagery around Valentine’s Day is populated by pretty young things, as if romance is only for those who were born after 1990. Now that’s ridiculous! Love comes in every variety, but here at NextTribe, we are especially partial to the variety that blooms strong into midlife and beyond. So we’d like to take V-Day as an excuse to celebrate 10 of our favorite duos who have what seem to be stellar and sexy relationships. Making it through the inevitable challenges and pitfalls is truly something to celebrate. These celebrity couples make us believe that love can conquer all.
Michelle Obama, 54, and Barack Obama, 57
We’re not going to get into a political debate here, but we love Michelle and Barack as a married couple (which they’ve been since 1992)—the obvious respect they have for one another, their body language when together (holding hands, cuddled up close), and how they dance together to everything from “Let’s Stay Together” to “Thriller.” They seem bonded … really, really bonded.
Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks, both 62
We love how these glamorous grandparents are still besotted with each other.
If you follow celebrities, you’ve probably heard people say, “I will lose all faith in love if these two divorce!” In this category are double Oscar-winner Tom and actress/producer Rita, who have been married 30 years in a town known for its here-today-gone-tomorrow unions. We love how these glamorous grandparents are still besotted with each other. Tom recently said that when he sees his wife in sweats with her hair piled on her head, she’s still “smokin’ hot.” And of going after tabloids that print rumors about their union, Rita has said it’s a no-brainer: “Our marriage is sacred to us.”
Ellen DeGeneres, 61, and Portia de Rossi, 46
These two are obviously still smitten, 10 years into their marriage, which helped bolster public acceptance of same-sex couples. As philosopher Wayne Dyer said when officiating at their ceremony, “You symbolize for many who have gone before you, who were forced to live their lives in quiet desperation, that we as people, are truly better than we used to be.” If you need more evidence of their enduring affection and thoughtfulness, look at this clip of Portia giving Ellen the best birthday present ever.
Mary Matalin, 65, and James Carville, 74
I’d rather stay happily married than pick a fight with my wife over politics.
Married since 1993, each has been outspoken in their political beliefs as pundits. Mary was a staunch Republican who became a Libertarian in 2016; James is a Democrat. Hey, if they can figure out how to get along, living together under one roof with such different beliefs, can’t the rest of us? Says James, “I’d rather stay happily married than pick a fight with my wife over politics.” Apparently, they don’t talk politics at home. As Mary once put it, “You don’t want to come home at night and clean your own toilet.”
Dame Helen Mirren, 73, and Taylor Hackford, 74
There are plenty of photos out there of these lovebirds smooching over the course of their 21-year union. They are matter-of-fact about why they married, with “Aging Boldly” icon Dame Helen saying of her director husband, “I always said I have nothing against marriage. It just wasn’t to my taste, like turnips. I just had to meet the right turnip.”
Pierce Brosnan, 65, and Keely Shaye Smith, 55
Married for 18 years, the actor who played James Bond and the journalist/TV personality had two sons together before they tied the knot. One of the things we love most about this couple is how Pierce gushes publicly about his wife, saying things like, “Keely is my North Star, always looking out for me” and “When Keely looks at me, I go weak.” Romance-a-rama!
Katherine Ross, 79, and Sam Elliott, 74
You work past the s–t; you don’t walk away from it.
Going strong for 34 years, our favorite cowboy and cowgirl (they’ve both been inducted into the National Cowboy Museum’s Hall of Great Western Performers) have a solid couple-dom that they are pragmatic about. Says Sam, seen most recently in A Star Is Born: “We work at being together. You work past the s–t; you don’t walk away from it. That’s how relationships last.” Adds Katherine, who gave that unforgettable performance in The Graduate: ““You just ride the roller coaster—and hang on tight.”
Trisha Yearwood, 54, and Garth Brooks, 57
Married since 2005, the mega-talented country music stars like sticking close. “We like to be together. We don’t like to be apart,” Trisha has said, with Garth adding, “We didn’t get married to be apart, so we’re gonna be together all the time. Let’s say she announces her tour supporting this new music. Well, I’ll be with her in the cities where she’s at; I’ll be where she’s playing.”
Annette Bening, 60, and Warren Beatty, 81
She didn’t need to tame him; he went willingly and wholeheartedly into couplehood.
Annette is known for being the one who “tamed” one of Hollywood’s most talked-about lotharios (the second verse of Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” is supposedly about him, and that’s only the tip of the iceberg). But he says she didn’t need to tame him; he went willingly and wholeheartedly into couplehood, saying their forged-in-1992 union is “the best thing that has ever occurred with me.” Awww.
Nancy Shevell, 59, and Sir Paul McCartney, 76
These two are relative newlyweds, having tied the knot in 2011, but are we ever happy to see their always-smiling faces. All of the Beatles-obsessed women of our generation know about Sir Paul’s amazing marriage to his first wife, his beloved Linda Eastman, and his not-so-happy second union to Heather Mills. Seeing his tender moments with his wife—for whom he wrote the song “My Valentine”—makes us glad “The Cute One” is delightedly partnered up again.
Tell us who we missed? Add your favorite couples in the comments section below.
Janet Siroto has held the Editor-in-Chief position at Time Inc.’s Family Life magazine, as well as senior editorial positions at Cosmopolitan, Redbook and Good Housekeeping. Her writing work has appeared in New York, The New York Times, Vogue and many others.