Who Married Marilyn Monroe First: Expert Tell You

Marilyn Monroe's marriages: James Dougherty, Joe DiMaggio, and Arthur Miller. Explore her relationships and rise to stardom. Expert insights.

Early Life and Rise to Stardom

Marilyn Monroe‘s given name was Norma Jeane Mortenson. She was born in 1926 and married her first husband,James Dougherty, at the age of 16 in 1942.This first marriage happened shortly before her career as an actress and model began to take off. Her career successes included modeling in the 1940s and signing a contract with 20th Century Fox in 1946 that made her a major Hollywood star and sex symbol.
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marylin monroe, marriage, white book page in close up photography
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The First Marriage: Marilyn Monroe and James Dougherty

Marilyn Monroe’s first husband was James Dougherty, a neighbor who was six years her senior. They married in June 1942 when Marilyn was just 16 years old. Her mother gave consent for the union, hoping it would provide stability for her troubled daughter.

James worked as an aircraft mechanic and enlisted in the Merchant Marines shortly after they married. The young couple saw little of each other during their four years of marriage due to James’ service during World War II.

Key facts about their marriage:

  • James and Marilyn first met when she was 13 years old. He was drawn to her cheerful disposition and beauty.
  • They married on June 19, 1942, at the Las Vegas Presbyterian Church in Nevada.
  • James served for long stretches of the marriage as a merchant marine, providing oil and supplies for U.S. troops during World War II.
  • The couple grew apart due to James’ long absences and Marilyn’s budding acting career.
  • Marilyn filed for divorce in 1946 citing “[[irreconcilable differences|irreconcilable_differences]]”. They divorced amicably on September 13 that year.

Marilyn Monroe’s reflections:

In later years, Marilyn spoke fondly of James and their time together. She said:

> “He was kind and loving. My only real home was in that house with Jim.”
> “I never really loved anyone until Jim. I was too young for the marriage, but he was older and enjoyed taking care of me.”

So despite its brevity, Marilyn Monroe’s first marriage helped shape her views on romance and partnerships going forward.

marylin monroe, marriage, couple standing on road under sunset
Photo by Jonathan Borba / Unsplash

The Second Marriage: Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio

Marilyn Monroe married Joe DiMaggio, arguably the most famous baseball player of his era, in 1954. The marriage lasted a scant nine months due to their incompatible personalities and Joe’s jealousy over Marilyn’s success and fame.

About Joe DiMaggio:

  • [[Joe DiMaggio|Joe_DiMaggio]] was an American baseball legend who played for the New York Yankees from 1936 to 1951.
  • He is widely considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time, notably winning nine World Series championships with the Yankees.
  • Joe had previously been married twice before he met Marilyn Monroe in 1952.

About their marriage:

  • Marilyn and Joe met in 1952 and immediately hit it off, bonding over their mutual loneliness and fame.
  • They married on [[January 14]], 1954, in a lavish ceremony attended by 1,500 guests, including numerous celebrities.
  • However, conflict soon arose as Joe struggled to adjust to Marilyn’s unpredictable work schedules and the constant attention she received.
  • Joe was also possessive and jealous of Marilyn’s many male co-stars and fans.
  • Their vastly different personalities and interests led to frequent arguments and conflict.
  • Marilyn filed for divorce on [[October 27]], 1954, citing “mental cruelty” as the reason.

Despite the short-lived nature of their marriage, Marilyn Monroe reflected:

> “Joe was the first man I ever respected.”
> “Joe was the one good man I ever knew. I’ll miss him till the day I die.”

So while turbulent, Marilyn Monroe’s marriage to Joe DiMaggio highlighted how important companionship, trust and respect were to her – values she would seek unsuccessfully in her subsequent relationships.

marylin monroe, marriage, groom and bride kneeling in front of priest raising The Holy Sacrament
Photo by Josh Applegate / Unsplash

The Third Marriage: Marilyn Monroe and Arthur Miller

Marilyn Monroe’s third and final marriage was to Arthur Miller, a successful American playwright and her romantic partner from 1956 to 1961.

About Arthur Miller:

  • [[Arthur Miller|Arthur_Miller]] was an acclaimed playwright whose best known plays include Death of a Salesman and The Crucible.
  • He won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama in 1949 for Death of a Salesman and wasblacklistedduring the McCarthy era.

About their relationship:

  • Monroe and Miller first met in 1951 and began dating in 1956 after Marilyn’s divorce from Joe DiMaggio.
  • They married on [[June 29]], 1956, in a small civil ceremony attended by only several close friends.
  • The marriage was reportedly tumultuous due to Marilyn’s struggles with substance abuse and mental illness as well as Miller’s alleged infidelity.
  • Their[[^1]] differing lifestyles and personalities also contributed to conflict as Miller sought intellectual stimulation while Marilyn craved companionship and attention.
  • Monroe filed for divorce in 1961, citing “mental cruelty” as the reason. However, they reconciled shortly before her death thatsame year.

Marilyn Monroe’s remarks:

Despite the difficulties, Marilyn viewed Arthur as her soulmateand said:

> “At last I met a man, I mean a real man…someone who knows what he wants and knows how to get it.”
> “For the first time I can say I love a man.”

So Arthur Miller representedMarilyn Monroe’s desire for a stable intellectual partner who could understand her artistic side and help navigate the pressures of fame. However, their incompatible temperaments ultimately doomedthe relationship.

marylin monroe, divorce, a woman in a green cardigan posing for a picture
Photo by Daniele La Rosa Messina / Unsplash

A Brief Look at Marilyn Monroe’s Other Relationships

While Marilyn Monroe only married three times in her life, she had numerous high-profile romances both before and after her marriages. Some of the more notable ones include:

  • [[Marlon Brando|Marlon_Brando]]: Marilyn had a brief but intense affair with fellow Hollywood icon Marlon Brando in 1954-1955. The fling ended acrimoniously due totheir volatile personalities and Marlon’s jealousy of Marilyn’s popularity.

  • Yves Montand: Marilyn met French actor Yves Montand in 1958 while filming Let’s Make Love. They began an affair that lasted several years butfizzled out due toYves’s reluctance toleave his wife.

  • [[Edward G. Robinson Jr.|Edward_G_Robinson_Jr]]: Marilyn dated Edward Robinson Jr., the young son of the famous actor of the same name, throughout most of 1961 until her death later that year. Little is known about their relationship but itappeared to give Marilyn comfort during a difficult period.

Marilyn Monroe remained childless and never remarried after her divorce from Arthur Miller in 1961. Her relationships were mostly turbulence-filled and short-lived, plagued by:

  • Her mental health and substance abuse issues
  • Her partners’ jealousy of her fame and popularity
  • Difficulty balancing her professional and personal lives

Yet Marilyn remained a romantic at heart who yearned for acompanion to share her life with. She said wistfully:

> “I am not an experienced woman at all. I am still looking for something permanent.”

So while Marilyn Monroe never found lasting love and marriage during her lifetime,her many relationships showed the importance of companionship and intimacy to her,even as fame and fleeting romances dominated her tragic life story.

marylin monroe, marriage, two bronze-colored rings
Photo by Zoriana Stakhniv / Unsplash

More Helpful Guide

Frequently Asked Question

What was Marilyn Monroe’s real name?

Marilyn Monroe’s real name was Norma Jeane Mortenson.

How tall was Marilyn Monroe?

Marilyn Monroe was 5 feet 5 inches tall.

Where did Marilyn Monroe die?

Marilyn Monroe died in her home in Los Angeles, California.

What was Marilyn Monroe’s cause of death ruled as?

Marilyn Monroe’s cause of death was ruled as probable suicide.

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