October 26th, 2009
06:58 PM ET
5 years ago

Elizabeth Edwards: Marriage is a 'great love story'

John and Elizabeth Edwards during the 2008 presidential campaign.
John and Elizabeth Edwards during the 2008 presidential campaign.

(CNN) – Despite John Edwards' extramarital affair that rocked his marriage, his wife described their union as a "love story," albeit an unconventional one.

Elizabeth Edwards told WJLA-TV in Washington late last week that she wants her marriage to work, and that her husband has been supportive as she continues to battle breast cancer.

"John said, 'Perhaps not the great love story that we hoped, but maybe a great love story nonetheless," she said.

Edwards added: "'Til death do you part, because that's what I want."

Though Elizabeth promised to soldier on, she acknowledged the grim reality of trying to overcome terminal cancer.

"Cancer will probably win," she said. "Why would I give it any more days than it may already take? That's the choice I make."


Filed under: Elizabeth Edwards • John Edwards • Popular Posts
soundoff (296 Responses)
  1. Anonymous

    I applaud Elizabeth Edwards for her strength and courage and I think she is a truly remarkable woman. Only her and her husband really know what goes on in their marriage. It is no one else's business. I support her decision and I respect her love story.

    That said, I want to stress to women that unconditional love does not mean you have to spend your life in the arms of someone who has broken your heart, disregarding any ounce of self respect and dignity you have. If a man does what John Edwards did, and unlike Elizabeth, you decide to leave, it doesn't make your love for him any less great.

    No matter how young or old, never give up hope that true love is out there and never give up looking for finding the love that you deserve. Love yourself above all others and never settle for something that doesn't feel good for you.

    October 26, 2009 02:13 pm at 2:13 pm |
  2. JK Ashburn, VA

    Oh, this is ridiculous. If there were any sincerity left in either of them or in their relationship, they would take it out of the public eye. But no, this is also about PR and self-gratification. It's a sappy melodrama that the media is eating up. This belongs in the National Enquirer where it can be ignored.

    October 26, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  3. No Hillary = No Obama

    I guess that's why these politicians' wives married these guys – they are as addicted to the lime light, the publicity, the recognition. Too bad Ms. Edwards can't admit her husband is a fraud.

    October 26, 2009 02:14 pm at 2:14 pm |
  4. lisa anders

    i don't know who she thinks she is kidding. obviously john edwards has known all along that she wouldn't leave. i am sure rielle hunter is not his 1st affair. cheating on you, having a child out of wedlock with her, talking to her about their 'life together after she dies." even if you only have six months left to live, run for your life.

    October 26, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  5. Jeanne in KY

    Elizabeth Edwards is a class act.
    John Edwards is a donkey's back end.
    I will continue to pray for her, and hope that he dies a lonely old man!

    October 26, 2009 02:16 pm at 2:16 pm |
  6. Reason Rules

    We are entitled to judge this because it is paraded in front of us, by both the media and Mrs. Edwards. This is not a love story but rather the story of three desperate people, none of them without blame. Mrs. Edwards deserves compassion because she is a human being who is suffering great physical pain, staring down the barrel of a gun, knowing she will leave behind young children with no mother. She also knows - as does the rest of the world - that lurking in the shadows with her husband's love child is the opportunist who set all this in motion. There is no way to know how this situation would sit now if Mrs. Edwards were not battling cancer. Perhaps she would have left him long ago (this was certainly not his first infidelity). But the story stays in the news because it appeals to women who have suffered at the hands of a man and to women who have suffered at the hands of the cancer beast. There is little dignity left to a woman who has been victimized by both, other than the that which she drums up from within. Mrs. Edwards has an apparent need to prove hers by continuing to comment on this subject, which is private and really no one's business. But she makes it our business by continuing to discuss it in one way or another - whether it's this interview or her recently published tell-all book. So, judgment aside - people falter and some will divorce and others will stay together - the real story here is the wife's inability to take this out of the public eye and get on with what's left of her life.

    October 26, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  7. Jann in Denver

    I feel bad for Elizebeth having to deal with her husbans affair and outside child in public. I can't be good for her health and wellbeing.

    October 26, 2009 02:18 pm at 2:18 pm |
  8. Greg Walker

    The only love John and Elizabeth Edwards share is a mutual love of self. Only a total hypocrite (or two of them, married to eachother) would build a 30,000 square foot palace while campaigning on the issues of "two Americas" and "ending poverty". I'm guessing Elizabeth is donating 100% of the proceeds from the books she writes ever other month to charity. I think she's opening a furniture store in NC too. I'm sure it will be discount furniture with 100% of the profits being tossed over the fence to the poor who live outside their compound. Don't get me started on the Breck Girl promising to marry his mistress on a rooftop in New York City (after his soulmate dies, of course) while The Dave Matthews Band plays. Now that they are no longer able to exploit anyone/everyone else for their own personal/political gain, I guess they're going to exploit eachother. They both make me sick!

    October 26, 2009 02:19 pm at 2:19 pm |
  9. Jean Kelly

    It's terrible that she has cancer. However, if she was healthy he would have divorced her by now, who's kidding who.

    October 26, 2009 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  10. Fed up with

    Some of you, who are so judgemental and cooky should read her book and then you will really know why this woman choose to stay. She is courageous and a real human being.Real people do what is best for themself and their family.

    October 26, 2009 02:22 pm at 2:22 pm |
  11. cony

    I wish Mrs. Edwards the best.

    October 26, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  12. Tram

    Having an affair is a conscious act.
    He chose to have one.
    It wasn't an accident.

    Now, if she forgave him, that's her business. What I'd like to know is how can anyone ever trust their spouse when the spouse cheats? That old excuse of "It didn't mean anything" doesn't work. If it didn't mean anything, then why did they do it?

    Personally, I think the only male politicians that might not have cheated is Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama. If there are any others, I'm not sure who they would be.

    October 26, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  13. Cheryl

    When you have terminal cancer your priorities change. Things that seemed very important at one time can become trivial. I know this because I saw it in my husband who died of lung cancer eight years ago.

    It's easy for people who have a life full of options ahead of them to say they would kick John Edwards to the curb. They have no idea what it would be like to face cancer and death alone. People shouldn't be judging and criticizing Elizabeth who already has so much to bear. I wish her all the happiness she and her family, including John, can find in the time left.

    October 26, 2009 02:24 pm at 2:24 pm |
  14. Mark Wells

    It sounds like John really can't wait until the day his wife dies. Is waiting for death a "love story ?" Come on John – the world knows better – no moive contract for you. I don't believe anyone will see this as a noble act by an means.

    October 26, 2009 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  15. julie

    Once they cheat, they always cheat...i'm sure this wasn't the first and won't be the last. Mrs. Edwards like many other women will eventually get a grip on reality and live her own life!

    October 26, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  16. Melissa

    Ok, this woman is an idiot. If its a "great love story", the husband DOESN'T CHEAT ON HIS WIFE because he loves her too much to ever hurt her that way.

    October 26, 2009 02:27 pm at 2:27 pm |
  17. Cynthia R

    The truth is, he wants to leave her for his other women and his baby. He can't, why? Because he knows that he would never be elected to another office again, for leaving his dying wife. Every women in American would make sure of that.

    October 26, 2009 02:30 pm at 2:30 pm |
  18. Mugwump

    Enough already America! Get a life, and get over the public's soap opera obsession with the lives of the Edwards. She, or anyone in a similar situation deserves better then marriage to that ego bloated snake oil salesman. But, they have both made their bed...now let them lie in it!

    October 26, 2009 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  19. JAS

    AT least she is doing the Honorable thing and staying with her husband, She is fighting for the marriage, she is awesome, on the other hand it does look like he's getting away with alot. God will have the final say on him, She is doing the right thing.

    October 26, 2009 02:33 pm at 2:33 pm |
  20. Judy Jones

    Yeck! What is really going on here – death = life insurance money.
    I agree "no movie contract" for John. Boy, your wife should write you a dear John letter – who knows, maybe then she would get well.

    October 26, 2009 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  21. Christi from Houston

    You people are fools. I realize Elizabeth Edwards is going through the unimaginable. She is dying, all the while her philandering husband is the talk of the tabloids. Anyone would be crazy to not to sympathize with her. However, she knows what he is; she knows what he does; like all other political families who lust for power, she stands by him. Jackie Kennedy, Hillary Clinton, etc. We as moral Americans must see this disgrace in American politics.

    October 26, 2009 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  22. Meh

    Btw, it's not a love story when only one person is showing love. Love means not cheating on your spouse!

    October 26, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  23. Jobless Recovery

    she should wake up to her husbands lies. He only said sorry, because he got caught.
    Gimme a break. Typical Obama voters are so ignorant.

    October 26, 2009 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  24. Obama Supporter

    The grim reality for Mrs. Edwards at this point in her life is to concentrate on her recovery, and close a blind eye to her husband's transgressions. Yes, her husband loves her, but he doesn't have the desire to make love to her, and will seek, if he hasn't already, another affair. Even the noblest of men are weak in that area.

    October 26, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
  25. Greg

    These people are truly in love..... WITH THEMSELVES.

    October 26, 2009 02:44 pm at 2:44 pm |
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