Michelle Obama Threatened Her Engagement To Barack During A Nasty Fight

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Michelle and Barack Obama are popularly rated as couple goals, but they love to keep it real. One key aspect of relationships they haven't shied away from is admitting that even the strongest couples have disagreements. The former First Lady shared insights into the inner workings of marriage on an episode of her podcast, "The Light Podcast." In this marriage-themed episode, Michelle recalled a time when she'd threatened to end her relationship with Barack over a disagreement. "Forget this. Who needs this?" she yelled, taking off her wedding ring and throwing it towards the back of the car.

Michelle explained that she hadn't meant it and had thrown the ring where she knew she could easily retrieve it. However, she realized her words had hurt Barack despite not meaning them. Their argument helped her change her method of communication in their relationship. She explained, "You have to learn how to communicate in a way that the other person is actually going to hear it, not just in a way that's going to ease you of your feelings." Michelle Obama has also advised newly married couples not to quit when it gets tough, as marriage can be rewarding if couples put in time and work.

Michelle and Barack Obama disagreed on the importance of marriage

Michelle Obama has often revealed that the importance of marriage was a source of contention between her and Barack Obama. In "The Light Podcast" episode with Conan O'Brien, Michelle revealed that the former president was quite direct about his feelings and romantic interest in her but didn't want to get married. She believed that his perspective was due to his upbringing. Barack spent most of his childhood with his mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, and his maternal grandparents in Hawaii.

He did not experience a stable family as his mother divorced his father, Obama Sr., in 1964 and left her second husband, Lolo Soetoro, in 1980. Michelle also disclosed that Barack's grandparents stayed together but weren't happy and had a turbulent relationship. In contrast, Barack described her family, the Robinsons, as a perfect family and marriage. Their differing views on marriage and their shared background in law led to constant arguments over the value of marriage.

Michelle explained on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" that marriage remained a tense subject until Barack ultimately resolved it during a dinner date. While they argued about the subject, a waiter served a plate that Michelle assumed was their meal. To her surprise, it contained a ring. Michelle famously recalled Barack saying, "Now that ought to shut you up." Over time, the former president has become an advocate for healthy marriage and happily gives others advice, as revealed by former Senior Advisor Dan Pfeiffer in his book "Yes We (Still) Can."

Michelle and Barack Obama's marriage suffered in the White House

Despite being thankful for the privilege of living in the White House, Michelle and Barack Obama have admitted that it put some strain on their marriage. In an interview with People in 2020, Barack revealed that their marriage suffered during their presidential tenure because Michelle prioritized the nation's needs above her feelings. Post-White House, the public has received personal accounts of how the Obamas' marriage changed after leaving the White House.

For Michelle, the silent times they now enjoy have been a huge factor in fixing their issues. "We have dinners alone and chunks of time where it's just us — what we were when we started this thing: no kids, no publicity, no nothing. Just us and our dreams," she told People in 2018. On his part, the former president's happiness seems to stem from Michelle's. In his interview, Barack explained that Michelle had been "more relaxed" since leaving the White House, and her happiness allowed them to rebuild their friendship.

The Obamas celebrated their 31st wedding anniversary in October 2023, with Michelle sharing a photo of the two on Instagram to mark the occasion. Michelle captioned her post: "31 years, and a lifetime to go. I love going through life with you by my side." Barack's anniversary post was filled with praises for his wife. "You're brilliant, kind, funny, and beautiful — and I'm lucky to call you mine." The Obamas' love story continues to thrive and inspire others.