Since Grey’s Anatomy has been on the air for so long, many people have taken an interest in the personal lives of their favorite stars from the show. If you’ve been riding along with Grey’s from the beginning, you’ve watched the characters and their actors grow over the years.

One fan favorite is Ellen Pompeo, who plays the lead Meredith Grey in the series. You’ve watched her fall in love with Dr. Derek Shepherd, but it turns out she has her own McDreamy in real life. She’s married to Chris Ivery, a music producer who hails from the Boston area, just like her.

The two met at a grocery store in L.A. back in 2003 and started dating a few months later. Craving privacy in the thick of Grey’s Anatomy popularity, they wed in a secret ceremony at City Hall in New York in 2007. Funny enough, Mayor Bloomberg officiated.

Clocking in at a little over ten years of marriage, Pompeo credits the secret to a strong marriage to acceptance. She sat down with UsWeekly with a small piece of marriage advice and said simply, “Don’t try to change people.”

The couple have found a way to balance work and family life with three kids – Stella, Sienna, and Eli – and still make time for each other. Though Pompeo rarely discusses her relationship, she has spoken before about how much she and her hubby enjoy each other’s company and often steal time away for themselves.

With a busy career as an actress, director, producer, and businesswoman, you’d think it would be hard to find the time. But Pompeo admits she is fortunate enough to have help when it comes to taking care of her family. That makes it a bit easier to focus on keeping the marriage tight.

When she and Ivery were first starting out, they bonded over their similar childhoods and how they grew up. And they accepted each other’s pasts and presents so they could have a strong future.

The concept of accepting your partner for who they are is nothing new, and relationship experts and psychologists advocate learning how to be committed to someone regardless of how they act or don’t act, etc. Going into a relationship hoping to “fix” a person or change them can often lead to disappointment.

Unless it’s a matter of things being toxic, love experts recommend being open to the type of acceptance that avoids drama and leads to growth. By not focusing on flaws and differences, couples can love each other without constantly passing judgement.

If these two have found a way to stay off the tricky path of resentment and “fixing”, then more power to them! To hear more about Pompeo on marriage, click on this video from Wochit. We realize Hollywood relationships have a reputation for being short-lived, but there are some out there that are full of love and happiness.

Do you agree with her marriage advice? What have you found to be a winning formula for a long-lasting relationship?