Gwyneth Paltrow revealed when she ‘knew’ her marriage to Coldplay’s Chris Martin was over years before ‘consciously uncoupling’

Gwyneth Paltrow once wrote a personal essay and shared that she realised her marriage was 'over' during her 38th birthday weekend

Composite of Gwyneth Paltrow attending the 'Encore! Embracing the new entertainment era' session during the Cannes Lions International Festival Of Creativity 2024 and Chris Martin attending The SiriusXM's Artist Confidential Series In The SiriusXM Studios
(Image credit: Image 1: Photo by Marc Piasecki/Getty Images// Image 2:Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for SiriusXM)

Gwyneth Paltrow once revealed the exact weekend she "knew" her marriage to Coldplay frontman Chris Martin was "over".

Actor and founder of iconic lifestyle website Goop, Gwyneth Paltrow and her former husband Chris Martin made headlines across the world when they consciously uncoupled in 2014. They were married for almost ten years and are proud parents of two children, Apple and Moses, who were 9 and 7 at the time they announced their separation. Whilst the exact reasons behind their decision remain private, Gwyneth has since revealed the exact moment she "knew" her marriage to Chris was over.

Writing a deeply personal essay for British Vogue back in 2020, the star confirmed that she and Chris had been on holiday together in picturesque Tuscany at the time. Not only that, but it was actually during Gwyneth’s 38th birthday weekend that she came to her emotional realisation.

Gwyneth Paltrow, with her hair in a bun, attends The Daily Front Row's Seventh Annual Fashion Los Angeles Awards

(Image credit: Photo by Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for Daily Front Row)

The Clean Plate: Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Everyday Glow by Gwyneth Paltrow | Was £25, Now £10.39 at Amazon

The Clean Plate: Delicious, Healthy Recipes for Everyday Glow by Gwyneth Paltrow | Was £25, Now £10.39 at Amazon

Containing over 100 delicious, nourishing recipes and customisable meal plans this is a cookbook that's perfect for fans of high quality, simple food and clean ingredients. It includes recipes for everything from smoothies to desserts like a chocolate chia pudding.

"It was my birthday, my 38th. My ex-husband and I were tucked away in the Tuscan countryside, on a hill in a beautiful cottage with a view of the forest," she began. "Fall was coming; the leaves were just loosening their grip on bright green. Inside, the cottage was perfectly appointed in the way you dream of for a birthday trip: cosy living room with a fireplace, kitchen table overflowing with spoils from the farm nearby – peaches, tomatoes on the vine, basil, eggs."

This might sound like most people’s idea of an idyllic holiday, but Gwyneth went on to remark how amongst all this beauty she "knew" her marriage had come to an end, though she can’t recall "exactly" what happened to spark this understanding.

She wrote, "I don’t recall when it happened, exactly. I don’t remember which day of the weekend it was or the time of day. But I knew - despite long walks and longer lie-ins, big glasses of Barolo and hands held - my marriage was over."

Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin attend the 3rd annual Sean Penn & Friends HELP HAITI HOME Gala in 2014

(Image credit: Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for J/P Haitian Relief Organization)

Gwyneth reflected that at this time it "felt almost involuntary" and described it as being "like the ring of a bell that has sounded and cannot be undone". She explained how she’d "tried to quell that knowing" but she knew it "in [her] bones" to be true. The actor turned 38 in 2010 and she disclosed that it had been "years" until she and Chris had "said the words aloud".

"We were close, though we had never fully settled into being a couple. We just didn’t quite fit together. There was always a bit of unease and unrest. But man, did we love our children," Gwyneth wrote, adding that they’d "tried everything" between the day she knew and the day they "relented to the truth" that their marriage had reached an end.

The phrase "conscious uncoupling" which featured in their 2014 statement announcing their separation remains strongly associated with Gwyneth and Coldplay frontman Chris to this day, though the Goop founder explained that the idea had been presented to them by their therapist.

Gwyneth Paltrow wears a black polo neck jumper as she attends the 2023 CFDA Fashion Awards in 2023

(Image credit: Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images)

Together the former couple had aimed to try and navigate their break up and not "lose everything" they’d built as a family. Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin have continued to successfully co-parent Apple and Moses and the actor went on to marry writer and producer Brad Falchuk in 2018 and has taken Goop to new heights. Meanwhile, the musician has found love with actor Dakota Johnson and entertained an estimated 100,000+ people at this year’s Glastonbury with Coldplay’s headline performance.

"I know my ex-husband was meant to be the father of my children, and I know my current husband is meant to be the person I grow very old with," Gwyneth reflected. "Conscious uncoupling lets us recognise those two different loves can coexist and nourish each other."

Emma Shacklock

Emma is a Royal Editor with eight years experience working in publishing. Her specialist areas include the British Royal Family, ranging from protocol to outfits. Alongside putting her royal knowledge to good use, Emma knows all there is to know about the latest TV shows on the BBC, ITV and more. When she’s not writing about the next unmissable show to add to your to-watch list or delving into royal protocol, Emma enjoys cooking, long walks and watching yet more crime dramas!