Will Smith’s new memoir, simply called Will, brings fans new, surprising facts about the star’s life. Smith bravely and honestly talks about depression, suicide, substance abuse, family, his romantic relationship with his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, and much more.
The couple has publicly talked about their unconventional marriage as well as the problems they have previously faced, and now, Will reveals all the secrets.
But the memoir doesn’t just give the world an insight into his personal life. If you dig a little deeper, you’ll see that he also gives us some valuable lessons about relationships.
1. Everyone has their ups and downs
You’re looking at one of the most glamorous Hollywood couples of our era. They have it all: a loving family, good looks, fame, money… Literally everything anyone could ever wish for.
But do they have a perfect life? Is their relationship flawless?
Certainly not! At the end of the day, they’re mortals, just like you and me.
Over the years, their romance has had its share of ups and downs. But their love defeated it all.
2. Raging jealousy gets you nowhere
In his memoir, the Prince of Bel-Air opens up about his wife’s close friendship with the deceased hip-hop icon Tupac Shakur.
Even though it was never confirmed that the two were engaged in a romantic relationship, the whole world knows what Jada and ‘Pac had was special.
And Will admits this himself. In fact, he talks about his “raging jealousy” over this friendship.
“In the beginning of our relationship, my mind was tortured by their connection. He was ‘PAC! and I was me … though they were never intimate, their love for each other is legendary.”
“[Tupac] was like Harry. [He] triggered the perception of myself as a coward… I hated that I wasn’t what he was in the world, and I suffered a raging jealousy: I wanted Jada to look at me like that.”
So I guess even Will Smith has had moments of insecurity. But did it get him anywhere? Was it worth it? According to him – definitely not.
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3. Your happiness is your own responsibility
“We realized that it was a fantasy illusion that we could make each other happy. We agreed that she had to make herself happy, and I had to make myself happy. Then we were going to present ourselves back to the relationship already happy—versus demanding that the other person fill our empty cup.”
This is what Will responded when asked how he and Jada resolved the biggest crisis in their marriage back in 2011.
The Smiths certainly do have the courage to spill the hard truth. You can’t expect your partner to magically make you happy, especially if you’re miserable when you’re on your own.
I know this is a hard pill to swallow, but it’s the only way towards a healthy relationship. And it’s definitely a lesson worth remembering.
4. Relational perfection is relative
Let’s get back to the pair’s unconventional relationship. For years, there’s been a buzz surrounding their open marriage.
In September, Will finally confirmed the rumors. In his GQ interview, the Aladdin star said:
“What is the perfect way to interact as a couple? And for the large part of our relationship, monogamy was what we chose, not thinking of monogamy as the only relational perfection.”
“We have given each other trust and freedom, with the belief that everybody has to find their own way. And marriage for us can’t be a prison. And I don’t suggest our road for anybody… But the experiences that the freedoms that we’ve given one another and the unconditional support, to me, is the highest definition of love.”
What does this tell you? Well, to do whatever the hell makes you happy. Every relationship dynamic is different, and it’s you and your partner’s job to find out what works best for you.
Forget about social conventions. Forget about your upbringing and everything you’ve been told is right. Follow your gut and find your own relational perfection!