I've always wondered what it is about Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith's marriage that makes them a target for public speculation. They've endured years of whispers that they're both secretly gay, they seem to land in the tabloids every other month for being on the verge of divorce, and of course there's that pesky long-running rumor that they have an open relationship.
Well, now that Jada has addressed the open marriage topic not once, but TWICE in the last two weeks, I finally have a theory for why they can't shake the gossip: they don't want to. At least, that's the only explanation I can come up with for Jada's most recent -- and decidedly emphatic! -- statement about whether or not she and Will have sex with other people.
So earlier this month Jada finally opened up to HuffPost Live about the rumors that she and Will, who have been married for over 14 years, have an open relationship. Here's part of what she said:
I've always told Will: You can do whatever you want as long as you can look at yourself in the mirror and be okay. Because at the end of the day, Will is his own man. I'm here as his partner, but he is his own man. He has to decide who he wants to be and that's not for me to do for him. Or vice versa.
Clear as mud, right? I get that it's really none of our business if the two of them sleep around, but if she was looking to shut down the gossip, this didn't quite work. In fact, it stirred up more questions about what, exactly, she was saying. While her intention may have been to create a broader discussion about the nature of a healthy marriage, plenty of people reacted with the following question:
SO ARE YOU GUYS SCREWING OTHER PEOPLE OR NOT?
Here's where if I were Jada Pinkett Smith I'd probably permanently bow out of the marriage-statement game (after reverently kissing each of my biceps, because damn, girl's got guns), but over the weekend she jumped on Facebook to "clarify" what she said:
Let me first say this, there are far more important things to talk about in regards to what is happening in the world than whether I have an open marriage or not. I am addressing this issue because a very important subject has been born from discussions about my statement that may be worthy of addressing.
The statement I made in regard to, “Will can do whatever he wants,” has illuminated the need to discuss the relationship between trust and love and how they co-exist.
Do we believe loving someone means owning them? Do we believe that ownership is the reason someone should “behave”? Do we believe that all the expectations, conditions, and underlying threats of “you better act right or else” keep one honest and true? Do we believe that we can have meaningful relationships with people who have not defined nor live by the integrity of his or her higher self? What of unconditional love? Or does love look like, feel like, and operate as enslavement? Do we believe that the more control we put on someone the safer we are? What of TRUST and LOVE?
Should we be married to individuals who can not be responsible for themselves and their families within their freedom? Should we be in relationships with individuals who we can not entrust to their own values, integrity, and LOVE…for us???
Here is how I will change my statement…Will and I BOTH can do WHATEVER we want, because we TRUST each other to do so. This does NOT mean we have an open relationship…this means we have a GROWN one.
In other words, stop looking for a definitive answer to this question, people, because Jada's just going to chide you some more -- and she's not afraid of using all-caps rhetorical questions to do so.
Like I said, I totally get that this topic is none of our business. I don't personally care if the two of them have been 100% monogamous for the entirety of their relationship, or if they gleefully bring a pile of Hollywood starlets -- male and female -- to bed with them every weekend for hot A-lister orgies complete with weird sexual positions influenced by Scientology terms (the "going clear," the "dirty Sea Org," the "Thetan mounts Xenu").
Still, if you really and truly want people to stop speculating about your sex life, you issue one inarguable statement -- "Will and I are completely committed to each other and our children" -- and you don't say another word. Jada Pinkett Smith's ongoing comments are just stirring the pot, and for that, they shouldn't be surprised when people continue to wonder what happens behind closed doors in the Smith household.
What do you think of Jada Pinkett Smith's most recent comments on their marriage?
Image via Essence