Why Chris and Gwyneth's careful uncoupling is to be applauded

Gwyneth Paltrow has been sharing her domestic divinity for years - you can bet she won’t be gaining three stone and feeling depressed about the divorce


Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin’s post about their “conscious uncoupling” after 11 years of marriage has crashed Paltrow’s Goop. com website as we learn a new euphemism for divorce. Like using the term “lavatory” instead of “toilet”, “conscious uncoupling” takes the ugliness out of “irreconcilable differences” as the un-couple try to set an example.

“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. . . and we hope that as we consciously uncouple and co-parent, we will be able to continue in the same manner,” the “uncouple” stated.

With a perfection typical of the ethereal Paltrow, the statement must have PR agents worldwide taking notes.

Paltrow has shared her coveted domestic life for years and offered her followers extreme, bizarre and superhuman exercise and detox advice. Her marriage detox is no different. In a perfume TV ad that seems to depict her as a divinity, we have seen the serene Paltrow preparing for a “beautiful day” of what we don’t know. Now we do: she’s been on track for a beautiful divorce.

As with so many other things she does, she is going to do it perfectly and share the recipe. “Uncoupling” has until now been a cold scientific term more apt for the International Space Station, but is it now also a sign of a highly-emotionally evolved couple? The phrase “unconscious uncoupling” is a true psychological phrase that describes the messy, chaotic, primal agony of couples who fall apart without thinking.

Paltrow – who you can bet won’t be gaining three stone and being depressed – may have got the phrase “conscious uncoupling” from Katherine Woodward Thomas, US author of Conscious Decoupling: how to turn break-up grief into personal breakthrough .

Trish Murphy, psychotherapist, believes that Paltrow and Martin “are setting a good by trying to demonstrate that this is not a bad breakup, it’s a good breakup and they are doing it consciously, carefully and with help over the past year. They are very clear that they will continue to parent together, which is definitely the right thing to do.”

“They should be applauded,” says Bernadette Ryan of Relationships Ireland: “People in high-profile roles have an influence on others behaviour and it is encouraging to see them set a good example.”

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