Wife of ‘Boy Meets World’ actor William Daniels details ‘open marriage’


Bonnie Bartlett Daniels says she and husband William Daniels “never felt tied to fidelity” at the beginning of their now 72-year marriage.

The 93-year-old got candid about the ups and downs of her relationship with the “Boy Meets World” actor, 95, while promoting her new memoir, “Middle of the Rainbow.”

“I guess it was a little bit of an open marriage at first, but that was very painful,” Bartlett Daniels told Fox News Digital on Tuesday. “That didn’t work well.”

“And it was a time when people were doing that,” she continued. “It was at a time in New York when there was a lot of sex and a lot of people doing all kinds of things, you know — very free.”

Bonnie Bartlett and William Daniels black and white photo.
The twosome wed in 1951.
NBCUniversal via Getty Images

The “St. Elsewhere” star — who married Daniels in 1951 — went on to reveal she had “an affair that lasted a few months” with an actor who was “slightly boring” sometime around 1959.

“I never felt guilty because I never felt tied to fidelity, and neither did Bill,” she wrote.

However, her husband’s affair with a producer in the ’70s left her “devastated” and completely changed the dynamic of their marriage.

Bonnie Bartlett and William Daniels portrait.
The pair’s complex relationship took a turn in the ’70s.
NBCUniversal via Getty Images

By that point, the actress learned she “could no longer tolerate any kind of open marriage” and the twosome moved “forward day-by-day” to repair their broken relationship.

“It was very painful for the both of us,” she told the outlet. “But it was something we had to go through because we never went through it.”

She continued, “When we got together I was 18. Bill was my first boyfriend … We just had to go through all that and still, we loved each other very much and always have.”

Bonnie Bartlett and William Daniels kiss on "Boy Meets World."
The “Boy Meets World” star and actress have been married for 72 years.
Disney General Entertainment Con

“[We] have always been there for each other. That’s what matters — if you’re there for the person and help [them] along in a relationship, [have] respect for them and what they’re doing and being there for them… [You have to] be together on the other side.” 


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