Alexis Ohanian is no stranger to tough endeavors.
Ohanian co-founded Reddit, the so-called “front page of the internet,” and also Initialized Capital, a venture capital firm based in San Francisco, California.
He is also the husband of tennis superstar Serena Williams and is well known for making grand gestures such as flying Serena to Venice on a whim.
And buying four billboards to display their newborn baby Olympia.
Serena Williams Cries Over Husband Alexis Ohanian Surprising Her With Billboards of Their Baby https://t.co/c1bSD8OFxV that is a beautiful gesture. She must be very happy. HE LOOKS A WONDERFUL MAN.
— Barbara Williams (@Barbara74646116) February 28, 2018
— Rahat Sagor (@RahatSagor1) May 9, 2018
— News Channel NYC (@NewsChannel_NYC) February 28, 2018
#India #News Update – Serena Williams’ Husband Alexis Ohanian Celebrates Her Return To Tennis With Four Billboards Serena, as expected, was completely bowled over by the sweet gesture. https://t.co/ler3bO9gw0 via @YoungIndians #Indianews pic.twitter.com/se5aAlHmxx
— Oye India (@YoungIndians) March 1, 2018
Serena Williams is currently considered the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) of women’s tennis, which is a formidable match even for a person of Ohanian’s status.
“When you’re married to the GOAT, the logistics alone can make the act of physically ‘showing up’ a challenge,” says Ohanian, in an essay on Glamour.
“Serena’s tennis schedule takes her all over the world, and my career also requires being on the road, whether it’s traveling to meet with founders, speaking at industry events, or spending time at my venture capital firm Initialized’s home office in San Francisco.”
“Comparing calendars isn’t romantic, but at the start of every year, Serena and I map out our schedules so that, ideally, there isn’t more than a week that we go without seeing each other.”
“I brought Google Calendar into her world so we could see each other’s schedules at any time, which would also make it easier to plan an impromptu call if we’re away from each other—a day without FaceTime is rough when you’ve been away from each other for two weeks.”
But Ohanian says this is no excuse not to “show up” for your family. He also elaborates that “showing up” can mean many different things.
“My understanding of showing up and being present for my wife was taken to a whole new level when Olympia was born. I was able to take 16 weeks of paid leave from Reddit, and it was one of the most important decisions I’ve made.”
“My understanding of showing up and being present for my wife was taken to a whole new level when Olympia was born. I was able to take 16 weeks of paid leave from Reddit, and it was one of the… https://t.co/RcVlqe2Ye1
— Lisa Rogers Lowrance (@LisaTheRiveter) February 15, 2019
— Laurence Anthony (@lanthony_22) February 16, 2019
If I can be half the man Alexis Ohanian is to my lover I would be happy and proud. Showing up and fighting battles for your lover, a defence force of note and supporter. Affirming, supportive, loving, international and consistent, that's how I want to be. On bad days to be kind.
— karabo Motaung (@Karabo_Mtaung) September 18, 2018
'Showing up and being present for my wife was taken to a whole new level when @olympiaohanian was born. I was able to take 16 weeks of paid leave from @Reddit, and it was one of the most important decisions I’ve made.' @alexisohanian @glamourmag https://t.co/4Lb1cx3aPj #diversity
— Cindy Gallop (@cindygallop) February 15, 2019
“My understanding of showing up and being present for my wife was taken to a whole new level when Olympia was born. I was able to take 16 weeks of paid leave from Reddit, and it was one of the… https://t.co/FDYvGmYxyH
— MaryAnneMohanraj (@mamohanraj) February 15, 2019
“I see taking leave as one of the most fundamental ways to “show up” for your partner and your family, and I cherished all 16 weeks I was able to take.”
Ohanian also notes that the pressures of his wife’s career are demanding for her, but that is all the more reason for him to “show up” and be supportive.
“I know I’ve been successful in my career, but I’m not the one racking up the trophies. It helps that my wife and I both know what it takes to be successful and bring that mutual understanding, drive, and relentlessness to the table.”
“But at the end of the day, sometimes her career really does have to come first. I try to be the most supportive partner I can be and to have conversations with her about her career goals and what she can do to reach them.”
Excellent article! Men need to know romance is more mental and spiritual than anything else. Although my husband was unable to “go big” on items, he chose to be there everyday in every way supporting me and our children. He shows up and shows out in the support department.
— Danette Williams (@dcwilliams0831) February 15, 2019
I’m glad that you shared the story about your parents. Sometimes ya parents don’t realize that our kids are watching us and our interactions as a couple. You had great role models and so does Olympia.
— Vivian Sampson (@getnoticedbseen) February 15, 2019
We all stare at Serena like that.
— #TheBigOBook (@Oloni) February 15, 2019
A fantastic photo?
From what I've been privileged to SEE these last few years, you 👀 @ Serena like that ALL the time 🤭
BOTH so blessed to have each other. Look at how comfortable you two look together. pic.twitter.com/o8mpdj7nrk
— Bridget61 (@Lady_T_1961) February 15, 2019
This is a wonderful article.
— Ryan K. Louie, MD, PhD (@ryanlouie) February 15, 2019
Ohanian loves Serena and loves their family and how their family has to function in order to survive.
Which is more than he can say for most men.
” Research shows that men are happy to have successful wives—until it interferes with their own work. A full 50 percent of men expect their career to take precedence over their wife’s.”
“I know this is real, because I’ve seen the tweets and comments about how being less successful (or doing what is traditionally considered ‘women’s work’ and caring for your kids) can be ’emasculating’.”
“To me, that says more about the guy than anything else. If you need to make more money than your partner to have confidence, then I think there’s something more going on under the hood. If that’s where your swagger’s has to come from, then it’s probably not real.”
Endearing, inspiring article. The two of you are blessed to have found each other. Your parents had their own fairy tale! 👏👏👏❤
— Living Best Life (@LivingBestLife1) February 15, 2019
Simply and honestly stated. An article so many men need to read. My father use to make pancakes every Sunday before we went to church. Sis still uses his griddle. A fond familial memory indeed. Happy Valentine’s Day Serena and Alexis. ❤️🌹
— Stephanie Florio (@playzabach) February 15, 2019
I love y’all love! I am such a hopeless romantic 💕💕💕
— Sussexsquad (@PositiveSussex) February 15, 2019
So sweet and they are both very lucky to have found each other. Also for this beautiful baby to have parents that will put her first.😍😍😍
— bee (@bcampos2002) February 15, 2019
I’m in the last couple weeks of a 16 week pat leave and this sums up my experience perfectly. it’s the most important time I’ve ever spent w/ my wife and our kids. it is, of course, an enormous privilege to be able to have this time but the emotional value is simply incalculable. pic.twitter.com/2BULlsUQJc
— 🤷♂️ jeffrey (@jeffrey) February 15, 2019
The pair continue to have an active, involved romance, and Ohanian sharing this piece of his story reminds us that even the greatest, most successful relationships take a lot of effort.
The couple, who have been married since 2017, live in West Palm Beach, FL. Olympia, their daughter, will be 2 on September 1, 2019.