Tom Brady and his wife Gisele Bündchen always appear to be loved up – so much so that it’s almost sickening for the rest of us – envious as humans are. Then again, their coupling hasn’t been without its struggles down the years. So what are the key factors holding this beautiful pair together, whilst so many other celebrity couples fall by the wayside?
If you follow Brady and Bündchen on Instagram, you’ll know what we mean by “loved up.” Yes, the couple often post photographs of each other together from their respective accounts, showing how close they are. And Valentine’s Day was no exception, with both sharing messages in February 2021.
Because Brady shared a selfie where he planted a kiss on his wife’s cheek, writing “My Forever Valentine.” Meanwhile, Bündchen posted a shot which reversed the roles, whilst including a play on Brady’s words. She wrote, “My forever lovvvey!” The two posts gained plenty of attention on Instagram, racking up some impressive numbers.
Bündchen, who boasts 17 million followers on the social media platform, accumulated over 700,000 likes with her Valentine’s Day post. As for Brady, his Instagram selfie earned more than 970,000 likes – despite having a slightly smaller following than his wife. But hey, 9.5 million isn’t that bad!
So it’s fair to say that Brady and Bündchen have had a lot of eyes on their relationship to present. But there’s more to this celebrity marriage than loved-up social media posts. Because they’ve had quite the journey together, enduring plenty of ups and downs along the way. Therefore, what’s the secret behind their success?
Surprisingly this high-profile coupling kicked off with a “blind date” at the end of 2006. Yet prior to their meeting, the supermodel had no real drive to find a partner. Why? It appears Bündchen was going through a period of reflection in her life, which many of us have to go through.
Speaking to Vanity Fair magazine in March 2009, Bündchen said, “I’d been single for a year, and I wasn’t looking for a relationship. I’d always been in serious relationships, but you learn a lot about yourself when you’re by yourself, and I was enjoying that process. But you don’t choose.”
Yet Bündchen’s outlook quickly changed when she locked eyes with Brady on their blind date. Because the famous pair got to know each other at New York City’s Turks & Frogs Wine Bar. And they certainly hit off, with the model detailing what happened that night during her interview with Vanity Fair.
Bündchen revealed, “I knew right away – the first time I saw [Brady]. We met through a friend. The moment I saw him, he smiled and I was like, ‘That is the most beautiful, charismatic smile I’ve ever seen!’ We sat and talked for three hours.” Then she made another intriguing admission.
“I had to go home for Christmas, but I didn’t want to leave,” Bündchen added. “You know that feeling of, like, you can’t get enough? From the first day we met, we’ve never spent one day without speaking to each other.” That’s pretty cool, right? Not all couples can say the same.
Some nine years on from that chat, the subject of their first date came up again when Bündchen spoke to Jimmy Fallon in the fall of 2018. This time the supermodel noted that she’d already gone through two previous “blind” meetings with guys prior to Brady. As the old saying goes, though, the third time was a charm.
Bündchen told Fallon, “You know, when I saw those kind eyes, I literally fell in love, like, right away. I was like, ‘What?’ [Brady] was just, you know how sweet he is.” So things got off to a strong start for the pair. But their fledgling relationship was quickly put to the test following a dramatic revelation.
Because before Brady met Bündchen, he’d just come out of a relationship with Bridget Moynahan. The NFL star had been with the Hollywood actress for around three years. Yet as the pair started to move on with their lives, Moynahan dropped a bombshell that would affect all three of them.
As Bündchen explained in her book Lessons: My Path to a Meaningful Life, “Two months into our relationship, Tom told me that his ex-girlfriend was pregnant. The very next day the news was everywhere, and I felt my world had been turned upside down. Needless to say, that wasn’t an easy time.”
Bündchen explained more while talking to Vanity Fair in 2009. She said, “You question at times – ‘Should I stay here? Maybe [Brady] should work this out [with Moynahan].’ But when people break up, it’s for a reason.” Despite her doubts, though, the supermodel persevered with Brady.
And it all worked out in the end. “Jack, my bonus child [born in 2007 to Moynahan], has been a huge gift and blessing in my life,” Bündchen noted in her book. The next big moment in her relationship with Brady occurred in February 2009. Because during that period, he decided to pop the question.
Yes, Brady asked Bündchen to marry him, ahead of a rather low-key wedding in Santa Monica, California, on February 26, 2009. Not exactly a normal thing in the celebrity world, right? Only 20 people were invited to the event – so it wasn’t a massive soirée by any means! To shed a bit more light on the big day, Brady spoke with GQ magazine that November.
Brady recalled, “We planned it in like ten days, and it was perfect. We went back to the house and I barbecued aged New York strips. We had champagne, a cake, some ice cream. It was a great night.” Then the pair decided to do it all over again a couple of months later, holding a second wedding at Bündchen’s home in Costa Rica.
Via her book, Bündchen said, “Our wedding took place at sunset on a warm day in early April. Around 40 people gathered in our open living room: Tom’s and my entire extended family – including nieces – and three good friends apiece.” Two weddings in two months. Most couples struggle to put just one together!
Over the next three years, Brady and Bündchen welcomed two kids into the world. Benjamin Rein Brady was born at their Massachusetts home in December 2009, while his sister Vivian Lake Brady arrived in 2012. Yet those incredible highs in their relationship didn’t last forever.
For instance, Brady made some unexpected revelations during a radio interview with Howard Stern in April 2020. According to the NFL legend, Bündchen wasn’t particularly happy with his conduct around their house some two years before. And that led to quite a bit of soul-searching, ahead of a pivotal moment.
Brady told Stern, “A couple of years ago, [Bündchen] didn’t feel like I was doing my part for the family. She felt like I would play football all season and she would take care of the house. And then all of a sudden when the season ended, I’d be like, ‘Great, let me get into all of my other business activities.’”
From there, Brady continued, “And [Bündchen’s] sitting there going, ‘Well when are you going to do things for the house? When are you going to take the kids to school and do that?’ That was a big part of our marriage that I had to like check myself, because she was like, ‘I have goals and dreams too.’”
Now this wasn’t easy for Brady because he started to feel a little bitter towards Bündchen’s stance. But they didn’t allow the problem to simmer, seeking out professional guidance in the end. The quarterback admitted to Stern, “The situation wasn’t great. She wasn’t satisfied with our marriage, so I needed to make a change in that.”
So no, it hasn’t all been plain sailing for Bündchen and Brady. Yet they’re still together and going strong today. What’s their secret, then? How have they managed to maintain their loving relationship over the last decade-and-a-half? Well, it’s actually quite simple. The answer lies in their mutual support.
Yes, Bündchen is always there for Brady when he plays his football, which he reciprocates in kind with her interests. And the support extends beyond that too. For instance, the pair experienced a tricky period in 2015 after a controversial event in the NFL. You might know it better as “Deflategate.”
Brady was still playing for the New England Patriots at that time, who were involved in the American Football Conference Championship Game. They faced the Indianapolis Colts and ran out comfortable winners by the final whistle. Yet the talk after the match wasn’t focused on the Patriots’ crushing 45-7 victory.
Instead Brady and the Patriots faced accusations they’d removed air from the footballs. In theory, the illicit move would’ve made things easier for the quarterback during the game. So as a result, the authorities disciplined him, despite his strong denials at the time. Plus publications like People magazine claimed that the controversy had affected his relationship with Bündchen as well.
But Bündchen came out fighting in November 2015. She sat down for an interview with CBS News – and of course, the subject of Deflategate came up. In her response, though, Brady’s wife made it quite clear that she continued to stand by him through all of the issues.
Bündchen explained, “My father always says the quality of your life depends on the quality of your relationships. And I think no matter how challenging it was, we were always being supportive of one another. And you know, that’s the most important thing you can have in your life – a support system and love.”
And Bündchen hadn’t been shy in showing this level of support to her hubby in the past either. Take the aftermath of Super Bowl XLVI as an example. When Brady and the Patriots failed to win that game, she fiercely defended him. “My husband cannot throw the ball and catch the ball at the same time,” she fired to the media.
Plus supportiveness isn’t the only secret behind Brady and Bündchen’s lasting marriage. In fact the mom shared another fascinating tidbit during her talk with Vanity Fair in 2009. In her mind, the NFL star boasted one particular trait that made him the perfect match – he had a good heart.
Bündchen said, “[Brady is] very close to his family. He’s Catholic. His parents have been married 40 years. He’s got a pure heart. That’s all that matters – he’s got the purest heart. I feel grateful because I have a lot of love in my life. I found the person I’m sharing my life with. I have a good man.”
And while we can’t ignore that Brady and Bündchen have faced problems along the way, the football player made an interesting point. As he spoke with Howard Stern in April 2020, the quarterback revealed that the issues from two years before prompted his wife to pen him a message. Its contents served as a wake-up call of sorts.
Brady noted, “It’s a very heartfelt letter for [Bündchen] to say ‘this is where I’m at in our marriage,’ and it’s a good reminder for me that things are going to change and evolve over time. What happened and what worked for us ten years ago won’t work for us forever, because we are growing in different ways.”
“The point of a relationship is that it has to work for both [partners],” Brady concluded to Stern. “You better work on both because if you don’t then it’s not sustainable.” Intriguing stuff, wouldn’t you say? You don’t normally get that level of insight into the mechanics of a celebrity coupling from the stars themselves!
Brady and Bündchen celebrated their 12th wedding anniversary in February 2021, with both sharing heartfelt messages on Instagram. She wrote, “We’ve gone through so much and have grown so much together. There’s nothing that I love more than you and our family and there’s no one that I’d rather share my life with than you!”
As for Brady, he wrote, “I couldn’t have imagined a better wife and partner than you when I said ‘I do’ 12 years ago. I’ve had so much fun, happiness and joy seeing our family grow! You’re the sweetest, most loving and determined person I know.” That post earned over 1.2 million likes, while his wife’s message accumulated more than 1.3 million.
So the secrets to their marital success are still working. Yet despite everything that we’ve looked at thus far, one final thing continues to hang over Brady and Bündchen. Simply put, it’s the quarterback’s insistence to keep playing in the NFL. According to him, they’ve discussed it quite a bit down the years.
Brady informed CBS News in 2017, “I think we go back and forth. [Bündchen will] say to me, ‘Well, ten years ago, you told me it was only gonna be ten years. And now it’s ten years, and you’re saying another, you know, five years.’” But when he won the Super Bowl in 2021, Bündchen was there for him again. Supportive as always.