Asked by Larry King’s replacement Monday to explain her pairing with “Stedman,” Winfrey said it was a “good relationship” but she “wasn’t in love with him for a long time.”
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What changed for her was how he reacted to a family member who Winfrey said betrayed her in the ’80s by selling her story to the tabloids for $20,000.
“Stedman came into the room with tears in his eyes and he said ‘the story is out,’” she recalled. “‘I have a copy of it if you want to see it. And I'm really sorry, you don't deserve this.’
“I looked at him and I thought, here is somebody who is willing to stand in and stand up for you, and that's what love is,” Winfrey said.
Pressed by Morgan for more details about her relationship, Winfrey said, “You’re wasting your time on the Stedman thing.”
But she said she was sure that if she had ever been hitched, she "wouldn’t have remained married.”
“The reason why this relationship has worked as well as it has is that we each got to define ourselves in it and not in a traditional form,” Winfrey said.
As an example, she cited having recently taken a break while working on her “OWN” network to cook Graham dinner.
“I want to make you a meal when I want to make you a meal,” Winfrey explained. “I won’t want it to be my responsibility to make you a meal.”