Marilyn Monroe, the most famous blonde bombshell of the 20th century. Not only makes a tremendous impact on popular culture but also leaves her mark on the hearts of many a man. Even a few women.
Monroe dated a mind-boggling number of partners throughout her relatively limited time here on planet earth. Sadly, the public will never get a chance to see her finally settle down. The grim reaper sweeps her away at the young age of 36 after overdosing on barbiturates.
Marilyn lived a very troubled life. Addiction plagued her story, and she struggled with various mood disorders. This turbulence likely made it difficult for her to have happy, healthy relationships. While it’s clear that she battles with chemical addiction, it’s arguable that she is addicted to sex and codependent relationships.
Her marriages to retired baseball legend Joe DiMaggio and playwright Arthur Miller were highly publicized. And both of these tumultuous unions were short-lived and ended in divorce. And you couldn’t talk about Monroe’s love life without mentioning her supposed affairs with JFK and his brother Robert.
In this video, we’ll be taking a closer look at these, and some of the other relationships Marilyn Monroe hooked up. It didn’t get nearly as much media attention but is still a very important chapter of her life story. So let’s dive on in, shall we?
Monroe is 16 years old and still going by her birth name, Norma Jeane Baker. She marries Jim Dougherty, one of her classmates at Van Nuys High School.
The two walked down the aisle in 1942; and while the marriage started fairly happy. It began to fall apart when Dougherty joined the Merchant Marines, and Marilyn began modeling. By 1946, just four years after exchanging their vowels, the couple had filed for divorce.
Years later, in 1976, Dougherty told People magazine that if he hadn’t joined the Merchant Marines during WWII, he believed that he and Monroe would have still been together.
Charlie Chaplin Jr.
It’s rumored that Marilyn and the legendary silent-film star’s son Charlie Jr had a fling in 1947. Their relationship supposedly came to an end when Charlie caught Monroe fooling around in his brother’s bed.
In Chaplin’s 1960 autobiography, he referenced this affair. Anthony Summers likewise made a mention of it in his book Goddess: The Secret Lives of Marilyn Monroe.
John F Kennedy
JFK and Marilyn Monroe reportedly got real close and cozy in 1962 while Kennedy was married to Jackie O.
A friend of Frank Sinatra, Tony Oppedisano, told PEOPLE in 2021 that JFK and Marilyn’s affair was purely sexual in nature as Monroe didn’t want to break up his marriage. Accounts of Monroe’s affairs with the Kennedy brothers have been reported in books, interviews, and news stories for decades, but there is very little if any concrete evidence to support these claims.
But just watching the footage of Marilyn singing her very – enthusiastic – rendition of Happy Birthday to the late president in 1962 speaks volumes about what sort of relationship the two likely had. It’s very obvious that Monroe harbored a tremendous amount of attraction for the Kennedy, and it wouldn’t take that big of a stretch of the imagination to picture the two sharing some after-hours one-on-one time together.
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Supposedly, after ending her relationship with JFK, Monroe got intimate with his brother Robert F. Kennedy sometime in the mid-60s. If this rumor is true as well, can you imagine what kind of heartache Monroe must have experienced when she witnessed these two men get assassinated one after the other?
This comedian and Marilyn first met while on the set of the 1948 film Ladies of the Chorus. Even though he was officially courting starlet Adele Jergens at the time, Berle was the one who came out and revealed that he and the young up-and-and-coming actress had been involved with each other.
Berle has been called the first superstar of the age of television. Monroe and him even starred in the 1960 film Let’s Make Love together – a pretty appropriate name given the context.
Monroe met Lytess, her drama instructor and lifelong firend when she signed to Columbia Pictures in 1948. After meeting, the two would become closer than two peas in a pod. And while it’s based purely on speculation and conjecture, it’s thought that the two enjoyed a romantic relationship as well.
Monroe grew so dependent on Lytess that she refused to shoot scenes without her presence. The rumor mill only continued to pump our stories speculating about the nature of their relationship after Monroe moved into Lytess’s home in 1952 to prepare for her role in the film Don’t Bother to Knock.
Eyebrows were further raised when Lytess would become openly hostile to Monroe’s male partner – Joe DiMaggio in particular. She was very protective of her sexpot bestie and didn’t want to see anyone hurt her. Was this merely a best friend looking out for her platonic pal, or was there something deeper at play? We may never know.
Monroe’s Other Alleged Female Romances
Rumors persisted for years that Monroe was either bisexual or an outright lesbian. Other women that Monroe supposedly had been entangled with include Barbara Stainwyck and Marlene Dietrich.
Monroe herself touched on this issue in her 1954 autobiography in which she revealed that a man who had kissed her once before had once told her that she might have been a lesbian because apparently, she had little response to males. And by males, he meant himself.
When he told her that, she still was trying to figure herself out. But according to what she wrote in that volume, after she had fallen in love for the first time, she finally knew what she was – and that wasn’t a lesbian. Even so, it’s still possible that Marilyn wrote this only as a means to deflect these persistent rumors. If it had come out at the time that she was, in fact, a lesbian, that revelation very well could have ended her career.
Here we have a man that has been called one of Tinseltown’s all-time greatest directors. He had admitted to having a brief affair with Monroe while he was still married to his wife Molly Thacher, a playwright famous for writing plays such as Rosemary, The Alligator, and The Egghead.
The world learned of this affair when letters between Kazan and his wife were unearthed that revealed that he had very little shame for getting involved with her. In those pieces of private correspondence, he said that at the time of their romance, Monroe was what he called ‘a little stray cat’ and was nothing like the star that she would later become.
Jumpin’ Joe and Marilyn Monroe were introduced on a blind date in 1952. He later referred to her as a ‘double-play combo’. She was not only stunningly beautiful, but DiMaggio also found her to be quite charming.
He had high hopes of her someday mothering his children and becoming a more traditional homemaker. Monroe likewise had longed for a stable home and children and became infatuated by the legendary baseball player. She respected the fact that he hadn’t tried to make a pass at her right off the bat. She admired him for how he treated her like she was something special.
The two lovebirds tied the knot on January 14, 1954, in a low-key ceremony at San Francisco’s City Hall, but unfortunately, problems immediately arose when Joe, who was used to being the center of attention, became jealous of his new wife’s rapid rising fame.
The couple ended up divorcing later that year in October, just nine months after their wedding day. Monroe would later reveal that the straw that broke the camel’s back so-to-speak was her infamous skirt fluttering scene in The Seven Year Itch. Joe was furious that she would show off so much of her body like that and wasn’t going to tolerate it.
But even though they split, DiMaggio and Monroe remained close friends up until Marilyn’s death. And up until his death in 1999, Joe would reportedly visit Marilyn’s grave three times a week.
Monroe and Brando were two of the most famed actors of their era – and the two were rumored to have dated in 1955 shortly after Marilyn and Jumpin’ Joe parted ways and right before she struck up her relationship with the next guy were going to talk about.
Marilyn would say that it was love at first sight when she met playwright Arthur Miller on the set of the 1950 film As Young As You Feel. But even though they shared mutual attraction, the two wouldn’t meet back up until 1955 after Marilyn and Joe DiMaggio’s divorce had been finalized and she had moved to the Big Apple.
After a brief and clandestine courtship, the two got married in 1956.
In 1956 Marilyn would say that Arthur was the first man that she had ever fallen in love with. She loved how serious he was while still having a great sense of humor.
While it seemed at first like Monroe was flourishing away from the chaos that is Hollywood living a relatively mundane, “normal” life – cooking, cleaning, and caring for Miller’s kids who adored her – eventually, her and Miller’s relationship began to sour.
Monroe’s substance abuse issues created serious problems both on set and back at home. Not long before the 1961 film The Misfits premiered, she and Miller filed for divorce after five years of matrimony.
Ol’ Blue Eyes was one of the most noteworthy relationships of Marilyn’s short life, even though the two only briefly dated after her divorce from Arthur Miller.
Marilyn stayed at the ‘Rubber Tree Plant’ crooner’s house for a spell after moving back to Hollywood. Their romance, however, began to cool by 1961 when Sinatra got engaged to Juliet Prowse. Even though they didn’t keep their romantic flame alive, Sinatra and Monroe remained close friends until her death.
In an interview with GQ in 2011, the since-deceased comedian revealed that he had had a secret romance with Monroe around the same time that many people believe that she had been involved with JFK. Lewis further claimed that he knew for cetain that Monroe had never been involved with JFK in the first place.
Well, that wraps up this rundown of Marilyn Monroe’s many love interests and bedfellows. Can you think of any that we might have missed? If so, let us know down in the comments.
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