Diane Sawyer Reveals the "Most Tragic Comment" Husband Mike Nichols Ever Made to Her

Celebrity News Jan. 8, 2014 AT 3:30PM
Diane Sawyer on the February 2014 cover of Ladies Home Journal In the February issue of Ladies' Home Journal, Diane Sawyer talks retirement rumors and opens up about life with husband Mike Nichols Credit: Alexei Hay/Ladies Home Journal

As the current anchor of ABC World News and a former co-anchor for Good Morning America, Diane Sawyer is used to being the interviewer, not the interviewee. But she found herself on the receiving end of questions recently when she sat down to chat with Ladies' Home Journal. Now, in the February 2014 issue of the magazine, she's opening up about everything from her marriage to film and theater director Mike Nichols to rumors of her retirement.

Asked how she always looks so put together, the veteran journalist credited a "fabulous team of people" and said she "honestly can't care" about her appearance most days. "I simply can't make myself do it," the still-stunning blonde explained, noting that her mother would likely use the words "inadequately groomed" to describe her. "And I'm finally okay with that. I think there's a point at which you know how you dress isn't going to affect how much you do in life."

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Her husband seems to have made peace with it, too -- in a way. "Mike asked me once, 'Would you just please wear the newer sweatpants?'" Sawyer recalled of Nichols, whom she wed in 1988. "I thought that was the most tragic comment he has ever made to me. But I went ahead and put them on anyway."

Which is not to say the spark is gone. Far from it, in fact. "[Mike is] much more romantic than I am. He puts little notes in my sock drawer or in my suitcase before I leave for a work trip," she revealed of her spouse, who has three kids from previous marriages. (She and Nichols have no children together.) "I think one of the most romantic things is simply the way he reaches for my hand all the time."

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"We rarely fight and I remember once when we were arguing he stopped in the middle of it and said, 'Well, this is sort of fun, too,'" she continued. "And it was! It was good to know that we could get out our strong feelings but that we were indestructible at the same time." 

It's also good to know they can have separate lives and careers. "Do you know 'Goodbye for Now' by Stephen Sondheim? Mike and I love that song," the 68-year-old ABC standout told the mag. "We're both passionate about our work: He'll say, 'I have to go and do this.' And I'll say, 'I have to go and do this.' And then we'll come back home and it's 'Hello again.' It's a beautiful thing, seeing someone you love so enraptured by what they do."

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(Academy Award winner Nichols' filmography includes classics like The Graduate and Working Girl, as well as movies such as Postcards From the Edge, Closer, and Charlie Wilson's War.)

Enraptured is a good word for Sawyer's attitude about her job. After more than five decades in the business, she's still excited about going to work -- which means that, for now, at least, she has no immediate plans to retire. "I'm still here and I'm loving it," she told LHJ. "Sometimes at the end of the day I'm so excited, I'm sure that I'm bionic."

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