Oprah Winfrey Shares Her and Stedman Graham’s Secret to Making Their ‘Fulfilling Relationship’ Work After All These Years

After being together for more than three decades, Oprah Winfrey and Stedman Graham know what makes for a successful relationship.

The longtime lovers have a romance that has stood the test of time and though they never tied the knot, their love has continued to flourish.

Oprah Winfrey and Stedman Graham
Stedman Graham and Oprah Winfrey | Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Robin Hood

Having notably one of the most long lasting relationships in Hollywood, Stedman and Winfrey are a lot more than just boyfriend and girlfriend.

They are spiritual partners who’ve embrace the tools needed for a happy and fulfilling romance.

Winfrey is certain they wouldn’t be together had they gotten married

For years, many have wondered why Winfrey and Stedman never tied the knot.

While the pair has proven that they’re not the atypical couple by choosing not to get married, society continues to question the reasoning behind this decision.

Though both have spoken on this topic in recent years, Winfrey is once again explaining why she and Graham never exchanged nuptials as she opens up about their unfaltering relationship in a new an essay in her magazine O, The Oprah Magazine.

While getting candid about her 34 year romance with the author/educator, the Queen of talk shows reveals that she and Graham both considered the idea of marriage, but realized it wouldn’t have worked.

Although Winfrey accepted Graham’s marriage proposal back in 1993, the media mogul recalls having doubts the minute she said “yes”.

Stedman Graham and Oprah Winfrey | Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

Not because she didn’t love Graham, but simply for the reason that she quickly realized becoming someone’s wife had never been her main priority.

“I realized I didn’t actually want a marriage,” she said. “I wanted to be asked. I wanted to know he felt I was worthy of being his missus, but I didn’t want the sacrifices, the compromises, the day-in-day-out commitment required to make a marriage work. My life with the show was my priority, and we both knew it.”

Had they’d gone through with exchanging nuptials, Winfrey is certain she and Graham “would not still be together.”

The key to their successful relationship

Instead of a marital relationship, Winfrey says she and Graham opted for a “spiritual partnership,” citing Gary Zukav who defines the term as a “partnership between equals for the purpose of spiritual growth.”

Though Winfrey and Graham’s way of life doesn’t fit with that of traditionalist, they couldn’t be happier with the way their relationship has played out over the years.

Stedman Graham and Oprah Winfrey
Stedman Graham and Oprah Winfrey | Daniel Zuchnik/FilmMagic

“Anyone who’s ever met him is always amazed by what a genuine gentleman he is. He’s so positive,” Winfrey gushed. “Wants the best for me and everyone he knows. Truly wishes people well. Doesn’t curse. (I’ve been known to.) Never have I heard him gossip or say a negative thing about anyone. (I have, plenty of times.) He’s appropriately named because he’s steady as a mountain. Even-tempered, accountable, trustworthy, patient.”

As for how they continue to make their romance work, Winfrey shares that having a mutual understanding when it comes to personal growth is the key to any successful relationship.

“Our relationship works because he created an identity beyond being ‘Oprah’s man’ (he teaches Identity Leadership around the world and has written multiple books on the subject),” she explained. “And because we share all the values that matter (integrity being number one). And because we relish seeing the other fulfill and manifest their destiny and purpose.”

Marriage or not, these two definitely have the ideal relationship and hopefully after this, many people will start modeling their own relationships after Winfrey and her beau.