Country music star Dolly Parton, 74, has managed to keep details of her marriage to husband Carl Dean, 78, relatively under wraps. According to her, Dean isn’t much a fan of the spotlight, and we’ve rarely even seen photos of the pair out together as a couple — despite their decades-long relationship. However, Parton recently let us in on a super cute — and relatable — insight on her partnership with Dean.
On an episode of the Table Manners podcast with host Jessie Ware, Parton confessed, “My husband and I have been together for 57 years and married for 54. I’m sick of him and I’m sure he’s sick of me.” Over half a century of marriage — that is impressive!
Pleasantries aside, we have no reason to believe that the pair isn’t still madly in love. In 2016, Parton and Dean celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary by renewing their vows. “I got all dressed up in the most beautiful gown you’ve ever seen and dressed that husband of mine up,” Parton told Rolling Stone about the romantic affair. “He looked like a handsome dude out of Hollywood.”
The event inspired her to write her 2016 album, Pure and Simple. The songs “Forever Love,” “Say Forever You’ll Be Mine,” and “Tomorrow is Forever” are songs she specifically dedicated to her husband. “I wrote ‘Say Forever You’ll Be Mine’ and ‘Tomorrow is Forever’ back in the early, early days of our marriage,” she said. “‘Forever Love’ is a more recent composition. That’s the one I considered our wedding song because we got remarried on May 30th, on our 50th anniversary.”
Despite their deep and lasting bond, we don’t see much of Carl Dean in the media, and there are several rumors as to why. Some have even suggested that Dean doesn’t even really exist — though these photos prove otherwise.
Speaking to Entertainment Tonight back in October, Parton explained why she keeps her relationship with her husband and her life in Hollywood separate. “[Carl’s] a quiet, reserved person, and he figured if he ever got out there in that, he’d never get a minute’s peace and he’s right about that,” she said. “I’ve always respected and appreciated that in him and I’ve always tried to keep him out of the limelight as much as I can. He said, ‘I didn’t choose this world, I chose you, and you chose that world. But we can keep our lives separate and together.’ And we do and we have.”
Clearly, Dolly Parton and Carl Dean have a strong, lasting love that even the pressures of Hollywood can’t dismantle. We think having a sense of humor must help — especially after 54 years. Cheers to Dolly and Carl!
This article originally appeared on our sister site, First for Women.