"Until death do us part." Three iconic Black couples continue to demonstrate an unwavering commitment to these vows all while battling life’s greatest challenges, maintaining their empire, and prioritizing family daily.
1. Barack and Michelle Obama
First up, is a couple that created monumental change in America — Barack and Michelle Obama. The couple, who recently celebrated 31 years of marriage, met in 1989 when Michelle was assigned as Barack’s mentor at a law firm. The two instantly connected, found themselves at the alter in 1992, and gave life to two beautiful daughters, Malia and Sasha Obama. As Barack's political career progressed, Michelle participated in his campaigns all while maintaining her own impressive career in healthcare.
They continued to inspire others when Barack became the first Black President and Michelle the First Black First Lady.
Their success didn’t end at the White House. In 2018, Michelle released her memoir, Becoming, and in 2020, Barack released "A Promised Land," diving into their love story and political ambitions. The couple was further recognized for their influence in 2022 when they returned to the White House for their official portrait unveiling.
However, like other couples they have had their fair share of challenges. Michelle revealed that they hit a rough patch when they struggled to adjust to each other’s unique ways of showing affection. However, their remarkable love story spanning three decades continues to remain unbreakable!
2. Gabrielle Union and Dwyane Wade
Gabrielle Union, known for her acting skills and Dwyane Wade, known for his NBA career tied the knot in 2014 and parent five children together, Wade’s kids, Zaire, Zaya, Xavier, Dahveon, and their daughter, Kaavia. The couple has shared the highs and lows of their relationship, including a brief break in 2013. During this period, Dwyane became a father to a child with another woman, a challenge they confronted upon reuniting.
The couple came face-to-face with other moments of adversity when trying to conceive a child. Gabrielle, who is 10 years older than Dwyane, opened up about the couple’s fertility struggles in her memoir, We’re Gonna Need More Wine, writing, “Each time this was presented, I felt the constant, public prodding to acknowledge my body’s failures. In life’s many comment sections, it was clear that I had wasted enough of everyone’s time. The messages were that I had prioritized my career, and now I was too old to have a kid”
However, despite the obstacles they faced, the couple continued striving for a child, and in 2018 they welcomed their daughter, Kaavia James, through surrogacy.
On top of their thriving careers, the couple has also been inspirational in their advocacy for LGBTQ+ causes, both showcasing support of their transgender daughter, Zaya. They even received the President's Award for LGBTQIA+ advocacy. This couple is also inspirational in their unique way of navigating finances within their relationship, splitting all expenses and simultaneously breaking away from traditional gender roles.
3. Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance
Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance initially met in the ‘80s while attending The Yale School of Drama, but it wasn’t until 1994 that the couple made things officially. Angela and Courtney tied the knot in 1997, and welcomed their twins Bronwyn Golden and Slater Josiah via surrogate in 2006. “Staying together so long, whether in the industry or not, I think the important thing is that you gotta marry the right person," Angela told People Magazine. “Make sure you're both looking in the same direction, basically. You're not clones of each other, but you have similar or closest similar belief systems and, you know, pleasant personalities.”
Together, Angela and Courtney have supported each other on and off the red carpet — and their love is inspirational.