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Johnny Galecki Reflects On How He Would Have Handled Kaley Cuoco Romance Differently

Nicki Swift 10/4/2022 Treva Bowdoin
Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco smiling © Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco smiling

Before Kaley Cuoco was married and divorced twice, she dated the guy she walked down the aisle with on "The Big Bang Theory." However, unlike many TV co-stars who dated in real life, she and co-star Johnny Galecki didn't go public with their romance; they did everything they could to ensure their relationship wouldn't cause a big bang.

On the "Armchair Expert" podcast, Cuoco confessed that she fell hard for Galecki when they first started filming "The Big Bang Theory" but couldn't make a move right away because he had a girlfriend. "The first few episodes, we would talk and hang out. And as things went on, finally we got drinks one night," she recalled. Cuoco didn't think Galecki reciprocated her feelings at first, but she ended up dating him for two years starting in 2008. They decided to keep their romance a secret, and neither actor spoke about their relationship until after it was over. "We were so protective of ourselves and the show and didn't want anything to ruin that. But that made it sad, too,"

Cuoco told Watch! Magazine. She revealed that the constant lying about the nature of their relationship and the effort it took to keep it under wraps put a strain on the couple. Cuoco made it clear that all of the secrecy was not her preference — and as he unraveled the mystery of their relationship history, Galecki admitted that he would handle the situation differently today.

Johnny Galecki Wouldn't Be So Secretive Now

Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco posing © Instagram Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco posing

Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco weren't only able to maintain a professional relationship after their breakup, but also remained such good friends that Cuoco invited Galecki to both of her weddings. Their closeness made it possible for them to reunite and dissect their romance for "The Big Bang Theory: The Definitive, Inside Story." In a book excerpt published by Vanity Fair, they exchange playful banter and share funny stories about their relationship, like when Cuoco tried to trick Galecki into coming to her hotel room to squash a bug before they were dating.

The candid convo is a far cry from Galecki's 2013 interview with Watch! Magazine, during which he expressed a reluctance to talk about dating Cuoco because he feared it would affect viewers' perceptions of their characters. "I get the curiosity, but I don't want to distract from the story," he explained.

However, if he got a relationship do-over, Galecki wouldn't have fretted over fans' feelings so much. "At that point in my life, that felt embarrassing," he said in the book. "I would feel differently about it today. Love is love, and you risk anything and everything for that." He also praised Cuoco for respecting his wishes, even though she's someone who loves sharing her love with fans. "I certainly see in hindsight the damage that my stubborn stance might have caused," says Galecki. But at least their failed experiment resulted in an out-of-this-world friendship.

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