The secret to Rachael Ray's successful marriage

In fairy tales, the prince and the princess always live happily ever after, but in real life, there are mortgages to fight over, nosy in-laws who get in the way, and, come ON, honey, would it kill you to take out the trash?? Add celebrity status to these variables, and it's not uncommon to take separate cars to divorce court instead of riding off into the sunset together. In fact, the failure rate of Hollywood couples is twice that of the general population (per Medium). 

Except, let's talk about TV cooking queen Rachael Ray, and her husband, John Cusimano. The two have been married for 15 years. How? Like nearly any famous couple, there have been rumors of trouble in paradise — including that her husband had a side dish in 2013, when he visited a swinger's club. But Ray and Cusimano adamantly denied those rumors. In fact, they renewed their vows in 2015 at a romantic Italian castle (per People). So what's their secret?

Rachel Ray and her husband give each other plenty of space

According to Ray, the couple has been able to keep their love alive by not smothering each other. They don't make demands of each other, and they have their own, independent hobbies. "I can't give a man an enormous amount of attention," she told People in 2007. "And John is totally down with that. When men I have dated over the years whined about, 'Oh, you make no time for me' — see ya! I just dumped them. I don't need that pressure in my life." 

Cusimano doesn't mind that Ray is so independent because he has his hobbies and passions to keep him busy. "He has his music, I love to cook, so we're not on each other all the time," she said on her show. And as much as he loves his famous wife's cooking, he makes no demands of the culinary celebrity. "He doesn't care if he gets dinner at 8 o'clock or 10 o'clock or 6 o'clock," Ray added. "He's actually very easy to be married to, but you can't have him!"

This independence is key for most romantic partnerships, relationship experts say. "Taking time for ourselves may seem selfish, as though we're avoiding our partner," clinical hypnotherapist Rachel Astarte told Bustle"In reality, brief periods of solitude recharge our soul batteries and allow us to give even more to our partners and to the relationship itself."