teens

'Conscious uncoupling' and holidays with her ex: Gwyneth Paltrow's unconventional family life.

On May 14, Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin’s daughter Apple turned 16.

Yes, really. Apple – whose name announcement caused international outrage way back in 2004 – is 16 years old.

“I can’t believe I’m actually writing these words but… happy sweet sixteen my darling girl,” Paltrow wrote in an Instagram tribute to her daughter.

Sidenote: Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop empire how includes a Netflix series. Post continues below video.

Video via Netflix

“You are the light of my heart, you are pure joy. You are wickedly intelligent and you have the best, most dry, most brilliant sense of humour. I have the best time being your mum. I love our nightly evening chats when I really get to hear what’s on your mind.

“You work hard to get whatever it is you want to achieve, and you have grit and responsibility in spades.

“I am so damn lucky to be your mother, you beautiful, kind young woman. Thank you for choosing me. I adore you to the moon and back a zillion times.”

 

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Apple is the oldest of Paltrow and Martin’s two children, with 14-year-old Moses also celebrating a birthday in isolation on April 9.

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Image: Getty.

At the age of 24, Paltrow was engaged to Brad Pitt, who she dated from 1994 to 1997. They called off their engagement as she wasn't ready for marriage, then she had a three year on-and-off relationship with Ben Affleck from 1997 to 2000.

From love songs to conscious uncoupling.

In 2002, Paltrow met Martin for the first time backstage at a Coldplay concert. It was just three weeks after her father Bruce's death from throat cancer, and Martin wrote Coldplay's hits Fix You and Swallowed in the Sea to comfort Paltrow during this time.

In an interview with Jonathan Ross, Paltrow said she couldn't listen to the latter without crying.

"I'm amazed [Martin] stuck with me, because I was a wreck," she said.

After a whirlwind year-long relationship, Paltrow and Martin married in a December 2003 ceremony so secretive that no family members, including Paltrow's mum, attended.

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Image: Getty.
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She was pregnant at the time, and in May 2004, Apple Blythe Alison Martin was born.

The name announcement was controversial, which Paltrow discussed with Oprah in August 2004.

"Her daddy said if it's a girl, I think her name should be Apple," Gwyneth said of how they named their daughter.

"It sounded so sweet and it conjured such a lovely picture for me - you know, apples are so sweet and they're wholesome and it's biblical - and I just thought it sounded so lovely and clean. And I just thought, 'Perfect'.

"And then she was born, and it became an international outrage. Which I found surprising because there are people named Rose or Lily or Ivy or June, or lots of pretty nouns."

She also told Oprah having a child introduced her to "a whole new dimension in emotion that I've never experienced".

"In one minute you just are completely redefined. I swear, that well of emotion, it's just inexplicable. I just felt like my life is forever changed."

In April 2006, Paltrow and Martin had Moses Bruce Anthony Martin, named after a song Martin wrote for Paltrow before their marriage.

 

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WFH with some moral support ????

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She has since spoken about experiencing postnatal depression.

"It was really shocking to me because I never thought that I would be a person who got postnatal depression," Paltrow recently said during an episode of the Goop podcast, where she spoke with her mother Blythe Danner.

"I was so euphoric when Apple was born, and I assumed it would happen with Mosey and it just… it took a while. I really went into a dark place."

Paltrow said during a 2011 interview with Good Housekeeping, she believed until then that postpartum depression "meant you were sobbing every day and incapable of looking after a child".

Martin noticed a change in her, and encouraged her to seek help.

"About four months into it, Chris came to me and said, 'Something's wrong. Something's wrong.' I kept saying, 'No, no, I'm fine.' But Chris identified it, and that sort of burst the bubble," Paltrow said.

"There are different shades of it and depths of it, which is why I think it's so important for women to talk about it. It was a trying time. I felt like a failure."

For the first few years as a mother, Paltrow slowed down her acting career.

In 2008, her career faced a resurgence when she was cast as Pepper Potts in Marvel's Iron Man movies.

She also launched her now infamous wellness and lifestyle company, Goop, in the same year, first as just a weekly newsletter before expanding into e-commerce.

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Throughout their marriage, Paltrow and Martin kept things private. So private, they could go months without being seen in public which would spark breakup rumours.

In 2009, she told Elle UK the rumours didn't bother them.

"It doesn't behoove us to be a public couple. He certainly doesn't want to be that. We've never ever walked down a red carpet together, we never will. If people think that that means we're not together, then - ha ha ha - so be it."

In May 2014, Paltrow posted their breakup announcement to Goop, adding the term 'conscious uncoupling' to our lexicons.

"We have been working hard for well over a year, some of it together, some of it separated, to see what might have been possible between us, and we have come to the conclusion that while we love each other very much we will remain separate," the statement said.

"We are, however, and always will be a family, and in many ways we are closer than we have ever been. We are parents first and foremost, to two incredibly wonderful children and we ask for their and our space and privacy to be respected at this difficult time. We have always conducted our relationship privately, and we hope that as we consciously uncouple and coparent, we will be able to continue in the same manner."

 

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Happy Birthday CAJM. This is a special one. We love you so much. #42

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In 2016, Martin gave his first interview since their separation to the Sunday Times, describing it as "a weird one".

"It's always out there in the media, but I have a very wonderful separation-divorce. It's a divorce but it's a weird one.

"It's funny. I don't think about that word very often - divorce. I don't see it that way. I see it more like you meet someone, you have some time together and things just move through. I've lived a lot of life since then."

The pair have remained on excellent terms since their divorce was finalised in July 2016, being a model example for successful co-parenting.

In January, Paltrow told Harper's Bazaar their relationship is a constant work-on.

"It's not like there's a finish line: 'Oh, we consciously uncoupled; we're done," she explained.

"It's a lifelong commitment to constantly reinvent your relationship with your ex, which you do presumably because you have children together. But I think we put all the hard work in at the beginning. I would say very rarely is it difficult now. We've learned how to communicate with each other. We love each other. We laugh. We have the best of each other. It's really nice. It makes you feel like you don't have to lose."

Brad Falchuk and a modern family.

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Image: Instagram.
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In 2014, Paltrow began dating producer Brad Falchuk, whom she met on the set of Glee in 2010.

The relationship was made public in 2015, and they got engaged in January 2018. They married six months later in July.

Then, they went on their honeymoon. And her ex-husband tagged along.

Speaking to Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest on Live with Kelly and Ryan last year, the actress opened up about her modern honeymoon.

"We just took our honeymoon in the Maldives and we had a big honeymoon over Christmas," the 47-year-old said.

"So, my new husband and his children, my children, my ex-husband, our best family friends [all went]. It was a very modern honeymoon. It was great. We had such a good time."

 

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Sunday brunch #modernfamily

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They also spent Thanksgiving and Christmas 2018 all together, with Martin's girlfriend Dakota Johnson.

Of course, Paltrow has also embraced Johnson into the family, even posting a birthday message to her on Instagram last year.

 

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Happy 30th birthday to this absolute gem ????

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Paltrow told Harper's Bazaar Johnson was becoming one of her favourite people.

"I love her. I can see how it would seem weird because it's sort of unconventional," she said.

"But I think, in this case, just having passed through it iteratively, I just adore her. I always start to think of the ampersand sign - what else can you bring in, instead of being resistant to or being made insecure by? There's so much juice in leaning in to something like that."

In June 2019, Paltrow shared in a profile with The Sunday Times the 'secret' to her relationship with Falchuk: separate houses.

"Falchuk, 48, spends three nights a week at his own house and four nights at Paltrow’s Los Angeles home, an arrangement approved by her intimacy teacher as a means of keeping the relationship fresh," the profile read.

"Oh, all my married friends say that the way we live sounds ideal and we shouldn't change a thing," Paltrow said.

The couple lived in their homes with their respective children from previous marriages and only came together a few nights a week, so the entire blended family never spent a night together under the one roof.

In August, a year into their marriage, they finally moved in together full time.

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"Married life has been really good. We took a year to let everybody (in the family) take it in and let the dust settle. And now we’re moving in together this month," Paltrow shared in an essay for In Style.

"I adore my husband. He's brilliant and deeply kind. I feel like he's a real equal too. And he pushes me in the best ways. I really like being married. It's fun," she added.

Feature image: Instagram.

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