In Hollywood, the likelihood of cheating on a partner is pretty high, especially when you take into consideration all those steamy scenes you’re shooting, those intimate rehearsal sessions, and the amount of time you spend away from your loved ones free to do pretty much whatever you please. If a relationship in Hollywood lasts over five years, it’s considered a major success, and you can probably count those who have been in it for the long haul (think 15+ years) on one hand.
With that being said, is it really all that surprising that there are plenty of celebrities who don’t think monogamy is realistic, or even possible, regardless of occupation? Most of the 15 celebs on this list have been outspoken about their feelings regarding monogamy on more than one occasion, saying that they believe that we, as humans, are a non-monogamous species. And to behave otherwise is simply unnatural. Others may have been jaded from past relationships, and still, others have used their views to find that sweet spot and create a relationship built on honesty–if not monogamy–that works for all parties involved! Do you agree or disagree with the choices they’ve made?
15. Shailene Woodley
Shailene Woodley has a few strange opinions about different things and isn’t shy about talking about them in interviews. (For example, she has discussed the health benefits of eating clay in order to remove toxins from the body and giving her va-jay-jay some much needed vitamin D by letting it bask in the sun every so often.) So, it’s not really that shocking to hear that the neo-hippie isn’t too keen on the idea of monogamy.
In a 2014 interview with Marie Claire magazine, Woodley admitted that monogamy isn’t something that is incorporated into our genetic makeup as humans. The twenty-something actress stated, “I just haven’t met anyone where I was like, ‘Wow, I could definitely see myself spending a season of my life with you.’ I don’t even know if humans are genetically made to be with one person forever.” While we’re not necessarily counting her youth as being a factor in her beliefs, maybe Woodley has some more life to live before deciding that only one person isn’t enough for her.
14. Tilda Swinton
Polyamorous relationships are becoming more common in our society, even though many still consider them to be taboo and indicative of a person’s inability (and unwillingness) to commit to one partner. However, actress Tilda Swinton has been able to get by just fine in a polyamorous relationship for years, so it’s nothing new to her!
The famously androgynous actress has a rather unique living arrangement, but one that she assured Harper’s Bazaar makes them all a family. In fact, a very happy one at that. Along with the father of her twins, John Byrne, Swinton and Byrne also lived under the same roof with Swinton’s other lover, Sandro Kopp, until John moved out (though not out of anger), and he still stays at home to care for their children while Swinton is away on set. Like most healthy polyamorous relationships, all three were willing partners in this setup, with no animosity between the two men who shared Tilda’s affections.
13. Caitlin Stasey
You might not recognize this young actress, but Caitlin Stasey is arguably best known for her role on the steamy period drama, Reign. You might be more willing to give Caitlin a Google, though, after hearing about her idyllic views on polyamory and her disillusionment with monogamy.
In a 2015 interview with Herself.com, a passionate feminist project originated by Stasey and two other women, the actress was honest about what she thinks about monogamy in this day and age. “It’s so pointless, painful, and archaic,” she said. “If it works for you and you genuinely find true contentment within monogamy, then by all means endure it, but the fact that it’s the status quo is truly discriminatory.”
The actress, who considers herself to be “mostly gay,” stated at the time that she was in a mostly open relationship, but that while they do not limit themselves physically, they are not polyamorous. However, Stasey is clearly open to the idea of polyamory which she considers, in one word, to be “Utopia.”
12. Whoopi Goldberg
While Whoopi Goldberg hasn’t said outright that she doesn’t believe in monogamy, she does have an interesting perspective on extramarital affairs, which she has detailed out in her book, If Someone Says “You Complete Me,” RUN: Whoopi’s Big Book of Relationships. In the book, Goldberg gets pretty candid on what she thinks about the whole one person for everyone idea that characterizes many relationships. “Sometimes in a relationship, people can’t always get what they need, and if you have reputable people you can turn to in order to get what you need, I say go for it. It’s a whole lot better than being frustrated and angry at the person you love,” she wrote.
Essentially, without totally voicing out her opinion in regards to monogamy, Goldberg is advising people to have affairs, as long as they can trust the person who is playing mistress to the relationship. We’re all for not being resentful of your partner, but perhaps Whoopi should’ve also mentioned discussing this idea with them first, so no one gets hurt.
11. Angelina Jolie
Did you really think Angelina Jolie would be a big believer in monogamy? The Oscar-winning actress, who made headlines in the past for (among other things) wearing a vial of blood around her neck, making out with her brother, and “stealing” Brad Pitt from Hollywood golden girl Jennifer Aniston, may have reinvented herself as a humanitarian earth mother of sorts, but a leopard can’t change its spots!
Without actually saying point-blank that she doesn’t believe in monogamy, Jolie’s remarks in 2009 made it very clear where she stands on the issue. “I doubt that fidelity is absolutely essential for a relationship,” she stated to a German magazine. “Neither Brad nor I have ever claimed that living together means being chained together. We make sure that we never restrict each other.” Well, when you’re herding around six kids, it may be a bit difficult to engage in extramarital affairs, so perhaps Jolie felt comfortable espousing on the merits of no restrictions!
10. Cameron Diaz
She may be married to Good Charlotte’s Benji Madden in one of the oddest celebrity pairings ever, but award-winning actress Cameron Diaz said not too long ago that monogamy simply wasn’t for her. While promoting the film The Other Woman in 2014 (a movie which is ironically about infidelity), the actress was unsure about the idea of marriage and monogamy, citing societal pressure as the primary reason so many people tie the knot. “A lot of people chase after it because they’ve been told, ‘This equals happiness.’ I don’t know if anyone is really naturally monogamous. We all have the same instincts as animals. But we live in a society where it’s been ingrained in us to do these things.”
To be fair, Diaz later clarified her statements, saying that she was speaking directly from the ideas brought about in the film. After the InStyle interview, Diaz went on Good Morning America to explain that she believes monogamy is “a very important part of relationships working.”
9. Alan Cumming
Despite being in a committed marriage to his long-term partner, Grant Shaffer, actor Alan Cumming has no illusions about monogamy. In an interview in 2014, Cumming said that while he and his husband do not have an open marriage, he does not believe that monogamy is a natural state and that it is “not something we are conditioned to do as animals.”
While he understands the commitment he has made to Shaffer, Cumming said in the same interview that open marriages and relationships can work as long as you are kind, honest, and faithful in a true way (whatever that means). Having a “little something on the side” isn’t the worst thing that can happen, according to the actor, and he may have a point, as long as both partners are aware of the situation and comfortable in it. Despite not believing in monogamy himself, it says a great deal about Cumming’s love for his husband that he is doing his best to maintain a solid, committed, monogamous relationship with him.
8. Sienna Miller
Maybe it was because she was involved with notorious cad Jude Law at the time (who famously cheated on her with his children’s nanny after first cheating on his wife, Sadie Frost, with the actress), but in 2006, Sienna Miller did not have a very rosy view on monogamy. In an interview with Rolling Stone, Miller considered the idea of monogamy to be unnatural for humans, because we are, at our core, animals. In the interview, Miller explained her beliefs, saying, “I don’t know, monogamy is a weird thing for me. It’s an overrated virtue because, let’s face it, we’re f***ing animals.”
While one could argue that former fiancé Law’s actions had a bearing on her perceptions of monogamy, Miller wasn’t such an angel herself. In 2008, the actress has a scandalous affair with married actor Balthazar Getty! While she’s since had a daughter with former fiancé Tom Sturridge–thus, fulfilling her 2006 dreams of being a working mother–Miller split from Sturridge, perhaps proving that her views on monogamy were all her own.
7. Hugh Grant
Hugh Grant has yet to tie the knot with any of the beautiful women he’s been linked to over the years, and perhaps it’s his views on monogamy that have stopped him from taking the plunge. In a 2016 interview with Howard Stern, Grant described marriage as “unromantic.” He elaborated on this statement by explaining, “Do I think human beings are meant to be in 40-year-long monogamous, faithful relationships? No, no.” He then went on to state his admiration for the European way of doing things, saying, “I always admire the French and the Italians who are very devoted to their marriages. They take them extremely seriously, but it is understood that there might be other visitors at five o’clock in the afternoon. You just never boast about it.”
Grant certainly has his own fair share of “five o’clock” visitors. He currently has four children with three different women! His infidelity is also well-documented, most notably the 1995 arrest for soliciting prostitution while he was involved with the drop-dead gorgeous Elizabeth Hurley!
6. Maria Bello
Rather than use nature and biology as a reason for refusing to settle down, actress Maria Bello instead pointed to the cold hard facts about the success of marriage in our modern society. In a 2006 interview with Esquire, Bello wasn’t shy about explaining why she wasn’t married and why she doesn’t see that happening for her ever. “The whole idea of monogamy is nonsensical to me. I suppose I understand the idea of a lifelong helpmate and friend. But when you have to stay s*xually monogamous to this one person, I think it’s usually a big fat lie. Read the statistics. Seventy percent of people are having affairs. And if they’re not, they’re j***ing off to p**n every night.”
While this jaded view might not sit well with other people, it carries enough weight for Bello to still be without a ring on her finger for over ten years, despite being involved in high-profile relationships with both men and women over the years.
When most celebrities talk about why they don’t believe in monogamy, they explain that it is because it seems unnatural to be attached to one person for so long because we are humans. That seems to involve seeing both men and women as carnal creatures, but Akon’s view of monogamy is distinctly more one-sided.
In 2013, the singer explained that polygamy makes perfect sense for men, but for women, not so much. While passing through LAX, Akon told TMZ, “The average guy in the world has a main girl and they got a side chick. At the end of the day, as a male, we are natural breeders by nature. We can’t even escape it if we wanted to. Let’s say you put 1000 guys on one corner and one bad chick walk past. You gon’ see 1000 heads go, ‘Damn’. They’re natural breeders. It’s in their genes, they can’t help it. It’s what we do. Men are put on this earth to breed and the reason why God put multiple women on this earth is for that.” Okay, then.
4. Scarlett Johansson
She may have been married twice (first to Canadian hottie Ryan Reynolds and later to French advertising executive Romain Dauriac), but that doesn’t mean Scarlett Johansson believes monogamy is the way to go.
On separate occasions, Johansson stated that monogamy isn’t natural and requires a lot of hard work. First, while still married to Reynolds, the actress told Cosmopolitan, “I don’t think it’s a natural instinct for human beings and I don’t think a lot of people can do it.” Later, in Playboy magazine, Johansson further solidified her views, stating, “I think the idea of marriage is very romantic…I don’t think it’s natural to be a monogamous person. I might be skewered for that, but I think it’s work. It’s a lot of work. And the fact that it’s such work for so many people–for everyone–the fact of that proves that it is not a natural thing.”
3. Will Smith
He’s one-half of one of the most famously successful (and longest-running) relationships in Hollywood, so how do Will Smith and wife Jada Pinkett Smith manage to keep things running smoothly? By not believing in monogamy, of course! While the couple hasn’t claimed outright that they don’t practice monogamy in their marriage, they have hinted multiple times that their relationship was an open one.
Smith explained the couple’s perspective, saying, “You don’t avoid what’s natural and you’re going to be attracted to other people. And if it came down to it, then one would say to the other, ‘Look, I need to have s*x with somebody. Now, I’m not going to do it if you don’t approve of it.’ In our marriage vows, we didn’t say ‘forsaking all others.’ We said ‘you will never hear I did something afterwards.’”
2. Ethan Hawke
Maybe actor Ethan Hawke is simply trying to explain away his bad behavior when he cheated on ex-wife, Uma Thurman, because his explanation of why he doesn’t believe in monogamy sounds a bit self-serving! Back in 2013, the actor explained that he didn’t think cheating was a big deal because “people have such a childish view of monogamy and fidelity. ‘He cheated, so he’s bad, she cheated, so she’s bad,’ as opposed to recognition that our species is not monogamous.”
The actor has since remarried (ironically to the woman he cheated on Thurman with), but has stated that to be upset over your partner cheating on you is unwarranted simply because it’s natural for us to cheat! “To act all indignant, that your world has been rocked because your lover was unfaithful to you, is a bit like acting rocked that your hair went grey.” While we could point out the difference between having control over your actions and being unable to control your hair follicles, we doubt he’d understand.
1. Hugh Hefner
Could you really be that surprised that the number one guy on this list is Playboy mogul Hugh Hefner? The dude is rarely seen without a bevy of scantily clad beauties at his side! Despite having “girlfriends” who work at the Playboy Mansion–and recently marrying model Crystal Harris–Hef just doesn’t think monogamy is possible, stating in 2009 to E! News that “marriage is just a convenience” and that “monogamy is something that has been invented along the way to take care of children.”
While he certainly has a point, owing to the fact that a stable (and monogamous) household may provide children with much-needed security and stability, Hef also didn’t mince words when it came to those who set out to have an entirely faithful, loyal, and long-lasting relationship. He said, “The notion that monogamy lasts forever is a wish!” Well, Hef is now on his third marriage at the age of 91 and the father of four children, so you can’t deny that the man practices what he preaches!