Though they may be rich, influential, and glamorous, these famous Latter-day Saints have the same troubles we all face when it comes to love. Awkward dating moments, insecurity, and embarrassing failures all mingle with the sweet to make these real-life romances something far more fascinating than what you'd find in a fairytale.
Lead images from Mormon Hub, Utah Valley 360, and Getty Images
Mitt and Ann Romney
Image from Fox News
Ann and Mitt Romney's love story is one that goes beyond the notion of high school sweethearts. In fact, their first introduction spans back to the 1950s, when the two first met as elementary students in Michigan.
He was a Cub Scout at the time, and things quite literally got off to a rocky start when he threw stones at herwhile she was horseback riding. But, after that fateful day, their relationship only improved.
"I'd seen the girl in elementary school, but she was in the second grade, I was in the fourth grade. So, I didn't pay a lot of attention at that point," Mitt explains in an article on Reuters. "But when she turned almost 16, I thought she was pretty interesting."
In fact, Ann became so interesting to Mitt, he devised a way to acquire some alone time together, convincing a friend to let him drive her home from a party. Things must have gone well because on March 21, 1965, the two went on their first date. And what was the date? A classic in both dating and cinematic terms. They went to a movie: the award-winning classic, The Sound of Music.
And, as they say, the rest is history. The two sweethearts dated until, just a few months after that first date, Mitt asked Ann to marry him in June 1965.
But the two weren't married until after Mitt served a mission in France. By the time they married in 1969, he was 22 and she was 19. They got married on the anniversary of their first date, March 21, 1969. They were married in a civil ceremony in Michigan—where President Nixonsent a telegram congratulating the couple—and then sealed in the Salt Lake Temple the following day. The two have been married for almost 47 years.
Learn more about Ann and Mitt's romance in the book In This Together.
In this heartfelt memoir, Ann Romney, former First Lady of Massachusetts, best-selling author, and founder and global ambassador for the Ann Romney Center for Neurologic Diseases at Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, talks candidly about her journey with multiple sclerosis. She shares details from her initial diagnosis in 1998, through the highs and lows of her treatment to the sources of faith that gave her strength and ultimately transformed her life and that of her family. She shares the wisdom of others who have touched her life and inspired her to make what has been an astounding recovery.
Donny and Debbie Osmond
Image from Facebook
Donny Osmond: he's a classy entertainer known for being a straight-edge kind of guy who follows the rules. Well . . . most of the time.
But, back in 1976, love brought out another side of Donny when he "stole" his brother's girl. All's fair in love and war, right?
It's a little ironic that on Donny and his wife Debbie's first date, the two weren't actually on the date together.
It was an epic crossed lovers' scenario, with Donny falling for his brother's girl right in the middle of a 1970s Elton John concert.
“I vividly remember when Elton sat down to sing ‘Your Song,’ I looked over at my brother and his date, and I thought to myself, ‘Someday, I’m going to marry my brother’s date,’” Donny told the Huffington Post.
Though Donny fell head over heels for the cute cheerleader, the feeling wasn't mutual. Without consulting his brother, Donny called up Debbie to ask her on an official date.
“She turned me down. So the chase was on," Donny told the Huffington Post. After a great deal of persistence, which included several attempts asking her out and three and a half years of dating, the girl who had the gall to turn Donny Osmond down finally became his wife. He was 20, she 19, and the two were married for time and all eternity in the Salt Lake Temple on May 8, 1978.
Steve and Barbara Graham Young
Image by Christine Johnson, christinejohnsonphotography.com
He was a professional football player at the height of his NFL career. She was a former model who graduated summa cum laude from Arizona State.
It's the story of a beautiful, powerhouse couple—but one that spent years in the making. Steve Young first met Barbara Graham in the early 1990s through a mutual friend, and the two remained in touch. However, it would be years before the two went on their first date—in fact, a blind date.
I guess sometimes it takes fate and a few friends to help you see what's right in front of your eyes.
Growing up, Young was a shy, anxious kid, and he carried many of those insecurities with him into his adult life. "I want you to know that in many ways, one of the most challenging things to do in this world is to keep the faith as a single member of the Church," he told young single adultsat a fireside. "I lived that for a very, very long time . . . and I'm grateful for that challenge."
► You'll also like: How a Blessing from an Apostle Helped Steve Young Finally Find His Wife
But, at the age of 38, Young's waiting and challenges as a single saint came to an end, and his "new, interesting, beautiful, eternal challenge" began with Barbara at the Hawaii Temple on March 14, 2000, something he said required "an immediate turn to selflessness." But, now the parents of two sons and two daughters, the two would agree that all the sacrifice was worth it.
Learn more about Steve Young's life and how he found his wife in QB: My Life Behind the Spiral.
Steve Young produced some of the most memorable moments in NFL history. The Run—his electrifying 49-yard game-winning touchdown against Minnesota. The Catch II—his last-second touchdown strike to Terrell Owens to beat Green Bay in the playoffs. Then there were his record-setting six touchdown passes in Super Bowl XXIX.
But Young's most impressive victories were personal ones that were won off the field when no one was watching. QB is a remarkably revealing memoir of an athletically gifted Latter-day Saints boy with a 4.0 GPA, a photographic memory, and a severe case of childhood separation anxiety. At the same time, Young was absolutely fearless—and unstoppable—whenever he had a ball in his hands.
Marie Osmond and Steve Craig
Image from E Online
No real-life love story ends with "I do" followed by a happily-ever-after. Most have bruises and heartaches along the road.
Such is the case with Marie Osmond and her husband twice over, former professional basketball player Steve Craig.
The two first met after a basketball game at BYU where Steve was a star player. In an interview with Good Morning America, Craig shared what drew him to Marie:
"In the profession that she has, she has to go through a great many things. And through it all, I think she has maintained her dignity, her wisdom, and her humor and honesty. Through it all, basically, she has been a great asset to womanhood, and I can't think of any greater lady that I would like to have working together with me to raise our children."
But, things don't always work out according to plan. The couple was married on June 26, 1982, then again on May 4, 2011. In between those two dates, both Marie and Steve faced a number of heartbreaks—some that pulled the two apart, and others that eventually reunited them again.
Their divorce came in 1985. Then came Marie's remarriage, her struggles with depression, and another unfortunate divorce in 2007. Then, in 2010, the unthinkable happened: Marie's 18-year-old son, Michael, committed suicide. During this dark time, it was Craig who helped her to cope.
Though the couple celebrates their marriage on their original wedding day and Marie wore the same dress at the same temple, they decided to be married on a different day, May 4th, Michael's birthday.
"I wanted him to be there for the wedding [in spirit]," Marie told Daily Mail.
And though full of life's unexpected and inevitable ups and downs, the two are working towards their happily-ever-after, having just celebrated the birth of another grandchild.
"As far as Steve is concerned, I have never found anyone I respect more, who I love more," Marie told ABC News.
"She deserves it," Marie's brother Donny asserted, calling her romance a Cinderella story. "I tell you, after all she's been through it's about time that Marie gets a little happiness in her life."
Stephenie and Christian Meyer
Image from Aceshowbiz by Apega / WENN.
The opening scene to Stephenie Meyer's epic, true romance begins in the same setting as her incredibly successful romantic saga, Twilight. Much like Bella, Stephenie had just moved. But instead of moving from desert climates to the drizzling gloom of Forks, Stephenie moved from Hartford, Connecticut, to the dry heat of Phoenix, Arizona.
It was there she first met her husband, Christian "Pancho" Meyer, at a ward activity. She was just 4 years old.
It wasn't until 16 years later that a relationship began to bloom—but when it did start, their love grew fast. It was 1993, and the future internationally best-selling author was in between her junior and senior years at Brigham Young Universtiy, studying English. The two quickly became reacquainted, and Christian fell hard and fast.
Their first date experience was quickly eclipsed by the second, where Christian proposed for the first time. Stephenie declined, but she still didn't shy away from the relationship. The two kept dating, with Christian proposing after every night they spent together. "He proposed a lot. Over 40 times," Stephenie recalled (Stephenie Meyer, Lisa Albert). But that didn't deter Christian—he continued asking, and she continued refusing until the memorable night she finally said "yes."
The two were married nine months after their first date. Both were 21.