Going strong! Selling Sunset star Jason Oppenheim’s friendship with girlfriend Chrishell Stause before their relationship “100 percent” made them stronger, he exclusively tells Life & Style. “She’s just an exceptional woman in so many ways.”

“I think it’s always nice if you can get to know somebody as a friend first because then I think you really know who you’re getting in bed with at night,” the real estate broker, 44, explains about his “honest and communicative relationship” with Chrishell, 40. “I really appreciated that because I think as friends, we had such open and honest conversations, and there’s no holding back anything.”

Jason Oppenheim Gushes Over Girlfriend Chrishell: She’s ‘Exceptional' 

Gregory Pace/Shutterstock

The All My Children actress joined the Oppenheim Group in 2018 after she got her real estate license. At that time, she was still married to ex-husband Justin Hartley. Her former spouse, 44, filed for divorce in November 2019 and according to Chrishell, blindsided her by ending their marriage via text message. Their divorce was finalized in February. He is now remarried to actress Sofia Pernas.

That being said, the Days of Our Lives actress and Jason had been in each other’s lives for years before their dynamic turned romantic. “She’s a very calming presence for me, and I’m just very happy around her,” Jason notes.

“I think we both knew each other very well,” Jason says. “Nobody is manipulating anything, and I don’t mean that in a bad way. … I think when you’re trying woo somebody on either side, you tend to do things that you think will help you in that process. When you get to know somebody as a friend, you have no angles. You’re just yourself.”

In addition, Jason gushes that their romance is “comfortable” and they “communicate exceptionally well” with each other. “I have not only a ton of love for her but also a ton of admiration and respect,” he reveals, adding they have a high “level of honest communication” with each other. “If any of us [has] something [to say], we express it. We just get along very well.”

Luckily, the Palo Alto native says he and Chrishell have received a “tremendous amount of support” from their coworkers at the Oppenheim Group. 

“The truth is most of the women in the office are really close friends with Chrishell. I mean, Mary [Fitzgerald] and Amanza [Smith], for sure and also Heather [Rae Young]. I think they’re extremely supportive because it’s just two of their best friends getting together,” dishes Jason. “I don’t think it’s changed dynamic, really. We were all together anyway. I can’t imagine anyone they would’ve been more supportive of because they really love Chrishell.”

Reporting by Natalie Posner