Dolly Parton has been one of the biggest names in the country for decades. Whether she's singing one of her iconic country hits or acting in one of the movies that we all love, Parton manages to remain a staple in the public eye.
For most stars, a public life like that can lead to a variety of issues, especially when it comes to their relationships, but Parton seems to have been the exception to the rule.
While other celebrity relationships fall apart under the pressure and scrutiny of the public eye, Parton and her husband Carl Thomas Dean have remained happily married for over 50 years.
The legendary singer recently spoke with People Magazine about how they keep their marriage alive and well, and she was really open about it.
“I’ve been married for 53 years come next May, and my husband and I have a great relationship,” Parton said. “We’ve been together most of our lives.”
It's clear humor is a big part of their relationship, because the first reason she gives for their lasting marriage is that she "stays gone."
“I always joke and laugh when people ask me what’s the key to my long marriage and lasting love. I always say ‘Stay gone!’ and there’s a lot of truth to that. I travel a lot, but we really enjoy each other when we’re together and the little things we do.”
It makes sense when you think about it. A lot of couples will think they are spending all their time together, but in reality they aren't actively enjoying their partner's company. Parton's constant travels means that when they are together, they really make every second count.
Their relationship had a cute start too, it wasn't all fancy restaurants and big parties, they preferred the simple things.
“When I met my husband, he wanted to take me out to dinner. He pulled up to the drive-in window and got our food at McDonald’s,” she said. “We know a few little places we can go without being bothered. He only likes to go places where he can be comfortable!”
Parton is obviously known for her look, but when it comes to her husband, Dean loves her just the way she is.
“He knows I’m always going to kind of be fixed up for him because I don’t believe in going home and being a slouch. He doesn’t care what I wear as long as I’m happy. He loves me the way I am.”
While Dean would rather stay out of the spotlight, he still supports his wife fully in all of her choices. They have a strong relationship and because of that they decided to celebrate that.
The couple renewed their vows two years ago as Parton had been feeling like she didn't get the wedding she wanted 50 years earlier. Her record label had wanted her to remain unwed, so Parton and Dean eloped even though they had already started preparations.
“We’d already sent out invitations and so I thought, ‘I ain’t waiting!’ We went that same weekend to Ringgold, Georgia in a little church. I had a little white dress and little flowers, and my mom went with me.”
Parton shared that the vow renewal on their 50th wedding anniversary was a way to celebrate their relationship.
“He got all dressed up and I got all dressed up. Fifty years is a long time for anything, and I felt that we needed to do something to commemorate this. It’s been a good 50 years and I don’t know how many more years we’ll have left.”
Parton and Dean's happy marriage is an inspiration to many, and we're so glad that they've found the key to making it last.