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Susan Geston and Jeff Bridges

Jeff's Advice About Marriage: "the passion, the sparks -- it gets better!"

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Jeff Bridges and Susan Geston in 1986

Susan and Jeff Bridges in June 1986.

Photo: Barry King/WireImage/Getty Images
Susan and Jeff Bridges

Susan and Jeff Bridges in Los Angeles, California on February 15, 2010 at the 82nd Annual Academy Awards Nominee Luncheon.

Photo: Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Jeff and Susan Bridges have one of Hollywood's most respected marriages. In July 2014 Taryn Hillin summed up Jeff Bridges' secret to marital success as "wise words from a wise man." Here are three great take-aways: 

  1. Support the one you say you love.
  2. Pay attention to the little things.
  3. Love each other and show your love.

Here is information on how Susand and Jeff met, their wedding, and more. You can read Jeff and Susan's thoughts about marriage at the end of this profile.

Fast Marriage Facts - Susan and Jeff
Met: 1974.
Married: June 5, 1977.
First Marriage: Yes.

Did You Know?
They were married five days after Jeff proposed.

Born:

Jeffrey Leon "Jeff" Bridges: December 4, 1949 in Los Angeles, California.

Susan D. Geston: Abt. 1953. Susan was raised in North Dakota.

How Susan and Jeff Met:

Jeff met Susan in 1974 when he was working on the movie Rancho Deluxe. Susan was not part of the film crew. She was waitressing and doing odd jobs on a location dude ranch resort, Chico Hot Springs, in Montana.

Sue Russell: "A striking, leggy blonde from North Dakota, she was working her way through college doing assorted jobs at a dude ranch. The fact that Sue was sporting two black eyes and a broken nose from a recent car accident didn’t deter Jeff. It was love at first sight."
Source: Sue Russell. Hello! Magazine. "Jeff Bridges." SueRussellWrites.com. 2001.

Jeff: "Now, about ten years later I get a letter from the makeup man on that picture, saying, 'I was going through my files, and I have some pictures of you asking a local girl out. I thought you might be interested.' And now I have two pictures — a close-up of her and a wide shot of me speaking the first words to my wife, and her answering my question in the negative."
Source: Alex Pappademas, Terry Richardson. "The Dude Abides." GQ.com. 3/2010.

Jeff: "After she turned me down, I ran into Sue again at the film's wrap party, and I asked her to dance. We danced together ... She was so relaxed and easy to be with. She had a fun attitude, and I had a feeling of being at home -- a soothing feeling of being where I belonged. When I got back to Los Angeles, I realized I had fallen in love with her in that week. It was shocking."
Source: Jeff Bridges. "Jeff Bridges: On Marriage." Rd.com. 2006.

 

Wedding Date:

Five days after Jeff proposed marriage, he and Susan were married on June 5, 1977 in their backyard.

Jeff: "Sue wanted to move along in her life, make a commitment, have children. I wasn't ready. So we ended up living apart for six months, though we still saw each other. Then, when Sue got a job offer in Montana, it struck me that she was really leaving. She actually talked to my mother about what she should do; they'd become the best of friends. And my mom, Dorothy -- my own, wonderful, loving mother -- counseled Sue to leave, forcing me to make a decision. My mother said, "Don't stay with him." The pressure was on! Finally I came to my senses. I thought, If I let this girl go, I will always know she was the one. So I got down on my knees and asked Sue to marry me."
Source: Jeff Bridges. "Jeff Bridges: On Marriage." Rd.com. 2/2006.
Jeff and Susan honeymooned in Maui.
Jeff: "We had this terrible honeymoon at the Seven Sacred Pools in Maui, this gorgeous scene, and all I could do was smell the rotten mangoes. And I was a pouting [bleep], just terrible. She said, 'Let's annul this.' I said, 'No, no.' I pouted like that for a year or more. Thank God she didn't cut me loose, 'cause I was miserable to be around, but I finally got with the program."
Source: Fred Schruers. "The Mellow Triumph of Jeff Bridges." Rolling Stone. 2/18/2010. pg. 37.

Children:

Susan and Jeff have three children.

  • Isabelle Annie Bridges: Born in 1981.
  • Jessica Lily Bridges: Born in 1983.
  • Hayley Roselouise Bridges: Born in 1985.

Residences:

Jeff and Susan have two homes.

  • Santa Barbara, California: Their home in Santa Barbara is a Tuscan-style villa on approximately 19 acres.
  • Montana: Their Montana log home is on land he purchased 30 years ago. It is near the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness.
Jeff: "And I just love this valley. One of my first dates with Sue, I was interested in buying property in Montana, and I had this feeling, 'Oh, God, I'm looking for a house with my wife.' It was so strong."
Source: Fred Schruers. "The Mellow Triumph of Jeff Bridges." Rolling Stone. 2/18/2010. pg. 37.

Occupations:

Jeff: Actor, producer, songwriter, photographer, painter, guitarist, co-founder of the End Hunger Network.

Susan: Producer.

Jeff at Academy Awards: "I especially want to thank my gorgeous wife, Sue. We've been married 33 years. We have a beautiful family, three girls, Isabelle, Jessie and Haley. Thank you guys, I wouldn't be up here without you."
Source: "Jeff Bridges Winning Best Actor for Crazy Heart." YouTube.com. 2010.

Quotes About the Marriage of Susan and Jeff Bridges:

Jeff: "This industry is tough on relationships. I've always thought that my wife should have a credit up alongside mine, because I couldn't do what I do without her support. And like the questioner asked, or said, we've been married since 1977, we knew each other for 2 years before that, so she's been able to do all these films with me and we've managed to get through them all together. The toughest thing about making movies is being apart from your family. One of the things I try my best to do is call my wife every day, to keep up to speed with what's going on in her life. And tell her what's going on with mine. Often when you're apart from your loved one like that for so long, your connection kind of atrophies unless you keep engaged, even if it's small everyday kind of stuff. But another aspect of keeping a marriage together, I think it's important to - you'll think I'm silly - but to love each other, which begs the question: 'what is love?' Words that come to mind are openness, understanding, gentleness, kindness, and kind of working on those things, because everyone has a light and a dark side, I think, selfish aspects, and to kind of recognize those in each other and realize that we are going to have our own particular story at any given time, and those stories, they might not be the ultimate truth but they are certainly true for each of us, so to understand that we are each going through our particular version of reality, to respect that, and to nurture being in love, you know? To nurture that."
Source: Reddit Ask Me Anything Reddit.com. 7/24/2014.

Jeff: "What I didn't count on with this whole marriage thing was that the passion, the sparks -- it gets better! I was thinking it was going to go the other way, but it gets cooler and hotter all at the same time. I think one of the things about staying married is just not getting a divorce. To go through some of those difficult times and stay together, you've got to expand your concept of love. If you've been married a long time, you're going to get tested."
Source: "Jeff Bridges' Marriage Gets Better With Time." ContactMusic.com. 12/12/2010.

Jeff: "Well, I'm deeply in love with this girl, man. Sue should get a credit on all my movies. I wouldn't be able to do this [without her]."
Source: Alex Pappademas, Terry Richardson. "The Dude Abides." GQ.com. 3/2010.

Susan Toepfer: "... how refreshing to watch Jeff Bridges repeatedly honor his wife ... he has also taken every opportunity to give part of the credit to his wife of 33 years." 
Source: Susan Toepfer. "Jeff Bridges: Husband of the Year." Trueslant.com. 2/22/2010.

Susan: "We had our rough times, but it was also fun."
Source: Fred Schruers. "The Mellow Triumph of Jeff Bridges." Rolling Stone. 2/18/2010. pg. 37.

Susan: "And at the wrap party he asked me to dance - he's a cotillion-award-winning dancer. And so we danced the night away, and I thought, 'OK, well, he's a nice guy after all."
Source: Fred Schruers. "The Mellow Triumph of Jeff Bridges." Rolling Stone. 2/18/2010. pg. 37.

Jeff: "Something I didn't count on with marriage is that it's gotten better on all fronts - the farther it goes on, it gets deeper and richer."
Source: Fred Schruers. "The Mellow Triumph of Jeff Bridges." Rolling Stone. 2/18/2010. pg. 37.

Jeff: "For the love story in Crazy Heart" Bridges looked to his own love life. "I've been married to my sweetheart for 33 years now, you know?" he said, "and I draw on that intimacy that I have with my wife, with Susan."
Source: Cynthia Bowers. "A Love Song for Jeff Bridges." CBSNews.com. 2/14/2010.

Jeff: "If you're married you'll have tough times, and it's what you do when you reach those times. You draw a line, and then if your partner crosses that line you say, 'Well, is that it?' or, 'Am I going to enlarge my concept of what love is?' You open your heart. The next time you have a problem, you think, 'I can't lose this; it's too precious.'"
Source: Elaine Lipworth. "The secrets of my success: Jeff Bridges." DailyMail.co.uk. 2/13/2010.

Judy Howard Ellis: "... when he honored his wife, Susan, he became more of the delectable, middle-aged heartthrob ... But Bridges' gesture to the mother of his three daughters is one example that seems to reflect the sweeter side of marriage. Call me idealistic, but why should selfishness and poor choices push love and loyalty from center stage?"
Source: Judy Howard Ellis. "Jeff and Susan Bridges: A Swooning Moment at the SAG Awards." PoliticsDaily.com. 1/26/2010.

Jeff: "I don't know how it is for women or for other guys, but when I was young and in my 20s, I had a fear of marriage. I thought it was a giant step toward death. So I did everything in my power to resist it -- the idea was frightening to me, man. Then I met Susan Geston ..."
Source: Jeff Bridges. "Jeff Bridges: On Marriage." Rd.com. 2/2006.

Jeff: In the 28 years we've been married, we've done 50 movies together. I say "we" because Sue deserves a credit too. I'm the guy who makes the buck, but she's the one who takes care of everything else. I really am more in love with her than ever. Source: Jeff Bridges. "Jeff Bridges: On Marriage." Rd.com. 2/2006.

Jeff: "I was going to say forgiveness but I guess love kind of covers it all. You forgive each other for making some blunders. We’ve been married over 20 years and your marriage is bound to be tested, and every time it is and you’re able to grow from that, then your love becomes bigger. You say, ‘Gee, I thought that was the boundary; I thought my love was only that big.’ But your love can grow and hold the thing that you thought was going to tear it apart and just make it like another piece of fruit in the bowl."
ource: Sue Russell. Hello! Magazine. "Jeff Bridges." SueRussellWrites.com. 2001.

Jeff: "It’s all the corny things. Communication, keeping all those lines open and talking to each other about what’s really going on. One of the traps that movie people fall into is you’re away from each other for months at a time and usually both parties get very into what’s happening at the moment and kind of let the relationship atrophy. "We learned that that is very dangerous because then you’ll come back and you’ll have maybe a week of honeymoon and then all the resentments pile up. So we try to talk every day and do the same thing with the kids too. Cell phones help."
ource: Sue Russell. Hello! Magazine. "Jeff Bridges." SueRussellWrites.com. 2001.

 

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