“The trouble with some women is they get all excited about nothing—and then marry him.” —Cher
Before meeting her first husband, Sonny Bono, a 16-year-old Cher had a brief romance with 25-year-old actor Warren Beatty. It fizzled out before Cher met Sonny, with whom she began a serious relationship. They had one child, son Chaz Bono, born 4 March 1969, shortly before getting married (despite the pair telling the public that they were already wed when rising to super-stardom in 1965.)
Sonny and Cher separated in 1972 but remained married until 1974. In the meantime, Cher dated music mogul David Geffen. In the mid-1970s, Cher almost went for a date with King of Rock 'n' Roll Elvis Presley, but her nerves got the better of her, and she backed out: "Almost, I got nervous, I didn't get there [to the date], I was that nervous. I wish I had."
Cher started a much-publicized relationship with The Allman Brothers Band's Gregg Allman in 1974. Cher and Allman married in 1975 and had one child together, son Elijah Blue Allman, born 10 July 1976. The pair separated in 1977 and divorced in 1978.
Cher began a three-year-long relationship in 1977 with Gene Simmons, who declared Cher his first love. That was in the days before Simmons' rock band Kiss - who always sported face paint during public appearances - had revealed their bare faces to the world. Thus, most of the many photographs of Cher and Simmons at the time show him with his face half-covered.
Cher met guitarist Les Dudek when she created the rock project Black Rose in 1980. The pair became romantically involved, which lasted until 1982. Cher was introduced to 22-year-old actor Val Kilmer during a party for her 36th Birthday, and the two began a near-two-year relationship.
American film producer Joshua Donen, son of Stanley Donen (director of such films as Singin' in the Rain and Charade), was Cher's next boyfriend, beginning in late 1984 and ending in 1986. However, midway through, the pair seemingly had a break as Cher briefly dated actor Tom Cruise in 1985.
On the eve of Cher's 40th Birthday, Cher met bagel shop worker Rob Camilletti and later asked him for a date. The pair were an item for three years, until 1989. Cher rebounded with Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora for a matter of months. She was once again photographed with Camilletti at multiple events in 1991. However, her usual dates for events for the rest of the decade were her sons Elijah and Chaz.
Cher would only return to the dating scene almost two decades later. She dated former Hells Angel Tim Medvetz from 2008 to 2009. In 2010, Cher was regularly snapped with her new beau, television writer Ron Zimmerman whom she met on Facebook. The pair were photographed together as late as 2012.
“I've had one love in my life that was fabulous. I've had more than one love in my life, actually. I've had three.” —Cher
Warren Beatty, b. 1937
Dated in 1962
Cher: “I did it because my girlfriends were crazy about him and so was my mother. What a disappointment!”
Sonny Bono, b. 1935
Dated 1962-1969, married 1969-1975 (separated in 1972)
Cher: “I was the kid, I was 16, and he was 28, and so he just knew a lot more than I did so that I got used to him being right about things that I kind of stopped trying. You know, I just thought, well, you know, whatever, Sonny knows what he's doing so I'll just let him do it, and I just got a little bit lazy too.”
David Geffen, b. 1943
Cher: “I was the first person to share his bed and to share his life. People don’t believe that, or they don’t want to believe it, or they don’t understand how it could be.”
Gregg Allman, b. 1947
Dated 1974-1975, married 1975-1978 (separated in 1977)
Cher: “I loved him and he is a very gentle spirit that just isn't strong enough to deal with fame and fortune and he just should have stayed down home... I loved him that makes you weak right there but I was the pillar, I was the strong woman who was going to change him and all that.”
“I could write what I know about men on the head of a pin — and still have room for the Yellow Pages.” —Cher
Gene Simmons, b. 1949
Cher, in 1979: “We just had a wonderful suite at Chicago's Ritz-Carlton overlooking the lake, and Gene said at breakfast that it never ceases to amaze him how comfortable he is with me. He has never had a steady girlfriend, never had a relationship with anybody. That's pretty heavy stuff. He's a very strange, complicated, and honest person”
Les Dudek, b. 1952
Ron Duguay, b. 1957
Cher: “That lasted for about a minute and a half.”
Val Kilmer, b. 1959
Cher: “[We spent] a week just talking before we kissed. We had a friendship first. I was wondering if something was wrong with him. I don't know what he thought of me. But when we did kiss, I thought my head would shoot right off my body. I had to catch my breath.”
Josh Donen, b. 1955
Cher, 1985: “[He] has the best strengths of all the men I've been with.”
Tom Cruise, b. 1962
Cher: “He was shy and sweet and just the most adorable man you can imagine. I was crazy about him.”
“I only dated younger men because they were the ones to ask. Older men don’t ask me out. Are they frightened of me? I don’t know. Older men never find me that attractive. It seems strange that a young man isn’t intimidated, but an older man is.” —Cher
Rob Camilletti, b. 1964
Cher, 1998: “The hardest thing for me to understand was that he simply seemed to love me as I was. We are best friends to this day. And I will never not love him.”
Richie Sambora, b. 1959
Tim Medvetz, b. 1970
Ron Zimmerman, b. 1958
Cher: “Ron is short, a bit scraggly, like an absent-minded professor. He’s the funniest person I have ever met, and the most eccentric — so bizarre and kind and very special.”