Visitors to the Calgary Woman’s Show Oct. 27 and 28 got the inside scoop on what it’s like to be married to a rock legend.
Former Playboy playmate Shannon Tweed led the audience at the BMO Centre through a roller coaster of emotions as she discussed the challenges of marriage to former Kiss front man Gene Simmons.
And they received some good advice in exchange for their attention to Tweed’s presentation.
Simmons and Tweed began their relationship in 1983 when Kiss was at the height of its’ popularity, and one year after Tweed had been named playmate of the year by Playboy magazine.
Tweed spoke at length about her husband’s infamous wandering eye.
“Everyone told me not to worry about it, that it was his job to pose with girls, so you ignore it,” said Tweed.
Even though Simmons was often on tour, Tweed never doubted the love the Kiss front man had for her or worried he would leave her.
She understood what being a rock star entailed.
“It’s a lot to ask a man not to look at women who are absolutely naked in front of you. It was an unreasonable thing for me to [nag about,]” said Tweed.
But later on in the pair’s relationship, Tweed discovered Simmons was being unfaithful to her.
“By the time I found out that he was not only touching the cake, he was eating the cake, I had young children,” said Tweed.
Although Simmons apologized profusely for his actions, Tweed said, “even after getting caught, he is the kind of guy to do what he wants when he wants to do it.”
Tweed said she stayed in her relationship with Simmons because she didn’t want his infidelities to affect her children’s upbringing.
“It wasn’t that I wasn’t happy, and it wasn’t that I wasn’t loved or taken care of. I didn’t stop loving him because of some bad behavior he had,” said Tweed.
Tweed said she and Simmons didn’t speak about the topic again until their children went to college.
“And then I said it is time for you to [man up,] and he did,” she said.
She said staying with an unfaithful partner is not for everybody.
When asked how she deals with the painful past of her and Simmons’ relationship, Tweed replied, “I have to forgive him every day.”
“I have to wake up every morning and move ahead. If not, you’re going to be bitter, and there is no life,” said the former Playmate.
In a separate interview following her presentation at the show, Tweed delivered some empowering advice for women.
“I think that us women don’t understand how powerful and influential we are in our own lives, our careers, with the men in our lives, with the next generation,” she said.
Tweed also stressed the need for women to support each other instead of tearing each other down.
“We need to hold each other up. We need to stop giving women a bad name and start to be more ethically moral when it comes to families and men who are tied down. Leave those men alone,” she said.
“Be more than what people tell us we can be. We are the influence around the world.”