Bennifer – Why Should We Care?

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck are engaged. How do I know? Because over the past week, my inbox has been overflowing with “experts” wanting to weigh in on this latest development in Lopez’s love life. I was asked if I want to interview an expert who has a “unique perspective on all things Bennifer.” (What exactly that expertise includes, wasn’t revealed.) One intrepid reporter detailed the many sparklers Jennifer has received to mark an engagement. For those still waiting for someone to propose, read and weep. 

Jennifer began modestly with a $100,000 ring from restaurateur Ojani Noa. Their marriage lasted a year. Then she married her backup singer, Cris Judd, and received an emerald-cut ring worth six figures. The first time she was engaged to Affleck, he gave her a pink Harry Winston diamond. When that engagement was called off, singer Marc Anthony popped the question with a 8.5 carat blue diamond ring, also from Harry Winston. They divorced after 12 years of marriage and two children. 

Who could forget her love affair with Yankee slugger Alex Rodriguez? He upped the ante with an emerald cut diamond that weighed in between 10 and 15 carats and was estimated to be worth $1 to $5 million. That engagement ended in 2021 and Jennifer found her way back to Affleck.

This time around, Affleck, recognizing her affinity for colored diamonds, gave her a green diamond. (That’s another pitch I’m receiving – jewelers wanting to talk about the popularity of colored diamonds. And it’s not far fetched. After Princess Diana’s sapphire engagement ring, brides opted for that stone rather than a diamond.) 

We can see how romantics are captivated by the Lopez-Affleck relationship. Everyone deserves a second chance. Perhaps the timing was wrong during that first engagement. Now the two are, hopefully, older and wiser, so perhaps the wedding will actually happen and they will live happily ever after. Maybe.

Why, however, do we care? We must because there wouldn’t be so many stories in the press about this couple. It’s a media jungle out there and finding the right “hook” for a story, one that will appeal to an audience, is ongoing. Jumping onto the Bennifer wagon seems to be a way to gain some traction. (In second place are Pete Davidson and Kim Kardashian which, let’s face it, has caught virtually everyone by surprise.)

Jennifer Lopez is the story, though. Does anyone now care who Marc Anthony is with? Or A-Rod? Jenny from the block manages to dominate the headlines, taking every opportunity to be photographed at award shows, parties, on the street, without seeming like a publicity hog. She not only handles being in the spotlight with professionalism, but also the constant scrutiny into her life. One has to admire her strength and staying power. While her fictional roles often fall flat (her last film, “Marry Me,” was a dud), her real life continues to fascinate and inspire. 

I just have one question: did she give back all those rings?

Photos: Bigstock

About Charlene Giannetti (576 Articles)
Charlene Giannetti, editor of Woman Around Town, is the recipient of seven awards from the New York Press Club for articles that have appeared on the website. A graduate of Syracuse University’s S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications, Charlene began her career working for a newspaper in Pennsylvania, then wrote for several publications in Washington covering environment and energy policy. In New York, she was an editor at Business Week magazine and her articles have appeared in many newspapers and magazines. She is the author of 13 non-fiction books, eight for parents of young adolescents written with Margaret Sagarese, including "The Roller-Coaster Years," "Cliques," and "Boy Crazy." She and Margaret have been keynote speakers at many events and have appeared on the Today Show, CBS Morning, FOX News, CNN, MSNBC, NPR, and many others. Her last book, "The Plantations of Virginia," written with Jai Williams, was published by Globe Pequot Press in February, 2017. Her podcast, WAT-CAST, interviewing men and women making news, is available on Soundcloud and on iTunes. She is one of the producers for the film "Life After You," focusing on the opioid/heroin crisis that had its premiere at WorldFest-Houston International Film Festival, where it won two awards. The film is now available to view on Amazon Prime, YouTube, and other services. Charlene and her husband live in Manhattan.