Gabrielle Union felt it was her right to be unfaithful in her first marriage.
The actress appeared on the “Armchair Expert” podcast and revealed her infidelity in her first marriage to NFL player Chris Howard was something she felt owed as the breadwinner.
“I just felt entitled to it as well. I was paying all the bills, I was working my ass off and I felt like that’s what comes [with it] – the spoils of riches,” she recalled. “Like my dad before me, whoever has the most gets to do whatever the hell they want, is what I thought.”
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The two were married in 2001, but separated four years later. She revealed in her 2017 memoir We’re Going to Need More Wine that she had been uncertain even at the altar, hinting the dissolution was due to unfaithfulness.
The problems in their marriage didn’t end there, as Union argued it was “dysfunctional from day one.”
“Neither one of us felt like our marriage should get in the way of our dating,” she joked, suggesting Howard had been cheating as well. “Part of it was keeping up with his activities. I was like, ‘Oh, that’s what you’re doing? Oh, you’re gonna feel this one.’”
The actress confessed they had even sought help to fix their relationship, but instead were advised to end it.
“It was such a stupid relationship that should have never gotten out of the dating phase,” she explained. “We were gifted therapy and in our first session, the therapist, that’s literally what she said. ‘I don’t know how you guys made it out of the dating phase.’ We should ‘probably look for a way to amicably dissolve because you have not one thing in common. No morals, no values, no scruples.’”
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As Union has come to understand herself more now as an adult, she suspects she was just “horny for validation”.
“Having certain kinds of guys like me and want me … made me feel like I was worthy and good and valuable and deserving,” she added.
The “She’s All That” star eventually happily married Dwyane Wade in 2014 and welcomed their 4-year-old daughter Kaavia in 2018. She’s also stepmother to Wade’s three other children, 20-year-old Zaire, 15-year-old Zaya, and 9-year-old Xavier.