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What Happens Behind Closed Doors?

Published on May 24, 2021

I have to admit I was totally shocked by the recent news of Bill and Melinda Gates’ divorce. I have admired their work to solve some of the world’s most devastating problems and have even envied their partnership, both personal and professional.  

Most recently, I’d watched them on two Netflix shows: Melinda on David Letterman’s My Next Guest Needs No Introduction (Melinda talks gender equality!) and Inside Bill’s Brain (Bill reads bags of books in a few days!).   

They seemed like the ultimate power couple, so single-minded in their mission. Of course, they are also human, so why was their split such a surprise to me and so many distant onlookers? (The insiders were likely privy to some of Bill and Melinda’s relationship issues, which are only now coming out in the press.)

This is not the first time I’ve been sucked into the false belief that what appears on the surface is what is real. Many of us portray a curated version of our lives, and I imagine it’s only more so with those who live under public scrutiny.  

So yes, we are all human and we all struggle in our relationships. This was a good reminder for me not to ASSUME anything about others’ lives, no matter how bright and shiny they appear.

YOUR TURNWhat assumptions are YOU making about others simply based on appearances? 

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Hélène Stelian, the Midlife Empowerment Coach

I’m Hélène, the Midlife Empowerment Coach. I help women who are struggling in midlife—who wonder if their best years are behind them and what’s next for them. I show them how to put themselves first, reclaim their identity, figure out what’s next, and feel excited about their future.


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