We know kids have crushes on their teachers, but actually going on to marrying them would be regarded as a violation of a social norm in some societies…
39-year-old Emmanuel Macron who is hoping to become the next President of France, fulfilled his fantasy by actually marrying his high school French literature teacher, Brigitte Marie-Claude Trogneux, who is 24 years older than him.
Emmanuel Macron’s victory in the first round of the French election has sparked global interest in Brigitte Trogneux, the frontrunner’s wife and former teacher.
Macron met his wife when he was just 15 years old and she was his French teacher at a Jesuit middle school in Amiens, and by the time he was 17, he said he would marry her. She was still married to her first husband, with whom she had three children. According to the book Emmanuel Macron: A Perfect Young Man by Anne Fulda, Macron’s parents told Trogneux to stay away from their son, at least until he was 18.
As Vogue notes, Macron’s parents tried to split them up by sending Macron to Paris to finish his studies, but that didn’t work as their relationship continued and they married in 2007, after Trogneux and her husband divorced.
Macron’s parents told Fulda that they believed their son was actually going after the heart of Trogneux’s daughter. They were stunned to hear that this wasn’t the case.
Macron’s mother is quoted to have told Trogneux, “Don’t you see. You’ve had your life. But he won’t have children with you.”
Macron and the 63-year-old Trogneux do not have any children together, but she has three children – son Sebastien and daughters Laurence and Tiphane – from a previous marriage. She also has seven grandchildren, so Macron is a 39-year-old step-grandfather.
“Nobody will ever know at what moment our story became a love story. That belongs to us. That is our secret,” Trogneux is quoted as saying in the book.
Trogneux’s eldest child, son Sebastien, was born in 1975, making him two years older than her current husband. Her middle child, daughter Laurence, is the same age as Macron and was in the class her mother taught when they met.
During a BMFTV interview in April, Macron made it clear that he and his wife have decided not to have any children, Gala notes. He’s already the step-grandfather of seven children.
“We have chosen not to have children. A choice that was not selfish for me,” he told BMFTV. “It is a choice that has been assumed, which I had to make very young given the age difference. I did not need my biological children and grandchildren to give them as much love as I gave them.”
A friend of the couple, Philippe Besson, acknowledged that not everyone was so accepting of their relationship.
“They both had to face hostile looks, even the reluctance of their respective families and also the view of our society about the age difference,” Besson told BFMTV. “Especially when the woman is older, (it’s) always suspicious.”
And while Macron and Trogneux have certainly garnered headlines in French tabloids, many of the stories are simply curious in nature — not critical.