Not everyone believes in love at first sight, soulmates, or finding "the one." That belief doesn't necessarily make someone a jaded, loveless cynic, though: in fact, that attitude is totally fine and can be healthy! It's also the case for one of Hollywood's cutest and most relatable couples. Yeah, that's right - Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard don't consider each other "the one." In fact, they've both dished to numerous publications about just how much time they dedicate to making their relationship work. They have been together since 2007 (married since 2013), after all: that's 10+ years of monogamy, which is almost unheard of in Hollywood. Plus they have two kids together, which never makes anything easier.
But the things Kristen Bell has said about marriage are pretty much pearls of wisdom for anyone who wants to put in the work and have a long, sustainable relationship. We could probably all take some cues from this candid and realistic couple. Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell's straightforwardness and invested effort in their relationship is a blessing for us all: we could all stand to learn something from these two.
Kristen Bell talked about going to couples therapy as something that's entirely necessary to their relationship and phrased it in a way that would make anyone think, "Of course, that makes total sense!" Bell told Good Housekeeping about her belief that no one should feel as if there's a stigma against couples therapy:
You do better in the gym with a trainer; you don't figure out how to cook without reading a recipe. Therapy is not something to be embarrassed about.
Shepard also talked about the pair's counseling sessions, saying it's essential to making their relationship work: “We are opposites and it has taken a tremendous amount of work and therapy for us to coexist.”
You can't deny that Dax Shepard and Kristen Bell seemed very much in love. But that doesn't mean they're all sunshine, red roses and love hearts the entire time. In fact, Shepard says the couple don't even believe in the concept of "The One." He talked about their realistic approach to romance:
We don’t believe in The One. [Kristin and I] don’t believe in the fairytale. We don’t believe that you can meet someone and you have perfectly matching personalities.
Bell has admitted that many of their arguments came during the first year or two of their relationship, and that her love for dramatic flair and door-slamming fights may have played a role in early drama. When Shepard confronted her on the toxicity of their relationship, she backed down, and reveals how they decided to move on from the drama and salvage their relationship:
Three months into our relationship he was like, "You can’t leave anymore during fights. I’m not going to do that." I was like, "What?" He’s like, "You can’t do that, I’m not going to have a relationship." He has a very high standard and a strong code of ethics. He was like, "No, I have more respect for myself, I love you but I’m not going to do that my whole life."
She points out the growth they've achieved since working through their fights, and talks about why it's not the end of the world or the relationship to differ with your partner. She has said:
It’s all about contempt. Never roll your eyes at someone... You might as well break up right then because it's contempt.
Kristen Bell revealed on the Motherly podcast that she and Shepard realized their kids can sense when there is tension between them, and they don't necessarily get to witness the resolution when it happens behind closed doors. To combat the potential toxicity, Shepard told Bell, "Let's make a deal that whenever we make up behind closed doors, that we role play the next morning." Bell gave an example of what their role playing looks like:
Every time we're testy with each other, the next morning I'll say, "Good morning, Daddy - I just wanted to say, last night, I had a really long day and I'm sorry that I snapped at you about, you know, not having the dinner that you wanted." And he would say, "Yeah, Mommy, you're right, I had a hard day too, and I'm really sorry." And then we physically kiss and hug.