October 12th, 2012
01:34 PM ET
By Dan Merica, CNN
Washington (CNN) – It all started because Bill wouldn’t stop staring.
President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton were married this week in 1975, and according to Hillary Clinton’s memoir “Living History,” their relationship started after she caught the future president staring at her.
“I noticed that he kept looking over at me. He had been doing a lot of that,” writes Hillary Clinton. “So I stood up from the desk, walked over to him and said, ‘If you're going to keep looking at me, and I'm going to keep looking back, we might as well be introduced. I'm Hillary Rodham.’ That was it. The way Bill tells the story, he couldn't remember his own name.”
Bill Clinton first proposed to Hillary Rodham after the couple graduated from law school and took their first trip to Europe. According to the memoir, after walking through London on their first day in the city, Bill got onto one knee on the shores of Lake Ennerdale.
Hillary said no. In her memoir she writes that what she meant to say was “give me time.”
Bill kept proposing; Hillary continued to say no.
In early 1975, the couple was driving through Little Rock, Arkansas, where the couple had settled after law school. After passing a red brick house, Hillary mentioned in passing that she liked that “little house.”
After Hillary returned from a trip to Chicago, Bill told her he had a surprise.
“Do you remember that house you liked,” Bill said, according to Hillary’s memoir. “Well, I bought it, so now you'd better marry me because I can't live in it by myself.”
Hillary said yes and they were married in the house’s living room on October 11, 1975. The wedding was tiny – only 15 people witnessed the event.
Though the couple has seen hard times during their 37 years of marriage – namely Clinton’s infidelity in and out of the White House – Hillary counts her faith as a reason she has stayed married.
“I am very grateful that I had a grounding in faith that gave me the courage and the strength to do what I thought was right, regardless of what the world thought,” she said.