They both posted tons of smiling selfies. Over two family getaways in January — first to Montana, then Japan — Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky made it clear they were enjoying themselves. “The kids had summer vacation in Australia, so they were able to take a few fun vacations,” a source exclusively tells In Touch. “They all had a great time!”

The trips were just what they needed. “They’ve been together for 14 years and have been open about how maintaining a relationship for that long can be difficult,” a source says of the pair, who’ve dealt with trust issues, his superstar career and lots of time apart since tying the knot in 2010. “The past few years have been especially trying, but they’ve managed to save their marriage.”

They’ve never been a “perfect couple” Elsa once confessed. Welcoming kids not long after getting married, then weathering the Thor star’s meteoric rise to fame put a lot of pressure on the relationship. “I don’t know how we survived as a couple,” the 47-year-old admitted. “It’s not easy.”

But last October, it seemed to have gotten harder than ever. “They took separate vacations, which was a huge red flag,” says an insider, noting that Elsa took their twin sons, Tristan and Sasha, 9, to Tokyo while Chris, 40, was in Iceland with their daughter, India, 11. “Elsa also stopped posting photos of him for a while, which was really unusual,” adds the insider. “They were definitely drifting apart.”

How did they get so off-track? Chris announced he was going to “slow down” and prioritize family after learned he has a higher chance of developing Alzheimer’s while filming his 2022 series, Limitless, “but Elsa, who had taken a step back from her career to focus on the kids years ago, actually started wanting to get back to work,” the insider says of the Spanish actress, who appeared in four projects that same year. “It took a while for them to get back in sync.”

Communication was key. “They had to stop and say to each other, ‘What do we want the next few years to look like? What are our priorities as a family?’ ” says the source. “That has helped them to come together and focus on themselves as a couple again.”

Chris Hemsworth and Elsa Pataky ‘Managed to Save Their Marriage’ After ‘Drifting Apart’
Caroline McCredie/Getty Images for AFI

So far it’s working. “There will always be obligations outside the home,” says the source, “but they have committed to try harder, and Chris is putting in the effort to be more present.”

They’re determined not to give up. “Every marriage has ups-and-downs,” says Elsa. “It’s constant work to be in a successful marriage and stay together forever. But we love each other so much we make it work.”

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