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Princess Madeleine and Chris O’Neill’s So-Called Perfect Marriage (and a splash of Adele)

Screen Shot 2016-01-26 at 10.31.01 PMPrincess Madeleine of Sweden is the youngest of the three royal Swedish children. While the British royals get all the press here in the States, the Swedish royal clan is well-known in Europe for being consistently at the top of the “hottest royals” lists. After all, Madeleine’s brother Prince Carl Philip is a ringer for Orlando Bloom. But I digress, this post is about the Princess and her husband Chris O’Neill. No, I didn’t get the opportunity to interview them, but they were interviewed about their marriage on a Norwegian-Swedish talk show Skavlan.

I relate to the princess because she’s also in a multi-cultural marriage, married to a British-American from New York City (They got married in Stockholm, just like us!). They spent a few years in NYC (sadly, I never met her), but they now live in London. In this interview, they are joined by Adele and celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, and give a rare glimpse into their Swedish/English marriage, which I was excited to learn has lots of parallels with my marriage to Sven!

  • Chris shows off his basic Swedish skills. He can understand it when spoken to, but he answers in English!
  • They discuss how they’ve changed each other for the better – Madeleine says Chris makes her laugh all the time, and Chris says she’s calmed his volatile nature. Princess Madeleine says she is the calm one, whereas Chris is the more temperamental one. (Sounds like Sven and me!).
  • They’re both the youngest children – Chris with five older sisters! He says this shaped him by being surrounded by lots of strong women in his life, and thus being attracted to a strong woman like Madeleine.
  • Do you wish you weren’t married to a Princess? Chris: Yes, sometimes. (He elaborates in the interview below.)
  • He had to adjust his career in finance when clients were uncomfortable with his newfound celebrity when it came to him managing their capital.
  • Chris addresses his father-in-law, the King of Sweden, “Sir.” Keeping it formal!
  • Chris praises Madeleine for being a natural mother to their two kids, but Madeleine is a self-proclaimed “terrible housewife.” They both agree she can’t cook, but that’s ok because Chris is quite the chef and shares his signature dish!
  • Who is more romantic? Chris! (I guess it’s those stoic Scandinavian genes, or the guardedness of growing up in the public eye. Madeleine does seem like a typical, reserved Swede.)
  • What I found to be the most interesting/relatable commentary: Madeleine says she loves Chris because he is who he is and he knows who he is, which she finds really attractive. (She can’t tell him what to wear!) Adele chimes in and says that’s what makes her current boyfriend different than other men previously in her life. In previous relationships, they were still trying to figure out who they were, and it didn’t work out until she met a man who knew who he was. Madeleine and Chris agreed. (I’ve always felt that this was a key foundation in my relationship with Sven – that Sven and I were strong individuals before we met.)
  • Finally, Madeleine discusses her platform as Princess of Sweden – raising awareness about child abuse. She is also a full-time housewife, which fellow mom Adele says is “way better than being a princess.” The crowd cheers!

For the full interview (in English) – check out the video below! While not as dynamic or entertaining as an American talk show, like say, Ellen, it’s actually more real and candid, delving deeply into their relationship rather than keeping it high level and superficial. It gives a refreshingly honest insight into their marriage that I was surprised someone from a royal family would share with the public. They actually seem like a “regular” couple!


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