Dolly Parton’s Secret to a Successful Marriage: ‘A Lot of Love and Respect’

Photo from Dolly Parton’s Instagram

Dolly Parton’s Secret to a Successful Marriage: ‘A Lot of Love and Respect’

By Movieguide® Contributor

After 56 years of experience, Dolly Parton shares her secrets to a successful marriage.

The prominent singer met her husband, Carl Thomas Dean, a Nashville, Tennessee businessman, at a laundromat when she was 18, and he was 21. Shortly after, they married in 1966.

Since then, the Movieguide® Grace Award® winner shared that the couple’s differences have only strengthened their relationship.

“I think I’ve talked pretty much about everything through the years with Carl, and we’re different people…But we just work so well together,” she explained.

“He’s kind of a loner, so he doesn’t really like being with anybody but me… he’s not one to kind of get out there and socialize that much. He loves living on the farm, taking care of the property as he has for all these many years, and then, we just have a lot to talk about,” Parton added.

In addition to their different personalities, their career differences also played a crucial role in their marriage.

“He loves music, but he’s not in the music business at all,” Parton shared. “We have different things to talk about, his world and my world, and we work really well together.”

She recently shared that her husband has always supported her career, and she prepared a special surprise for him on her next album.

“I’m doing so many of his favorite songs on the album,” the musician said. “So I’ll play it to him when it’s all done.”

But the ultimate secret to the couple’s long marriage?

“We have a lot of love and respect for each other, and I think the key to all of it…we both have a crazy, warped sense of humor, so we have a lot of fun,” Parton revealed. 

While Parton and Dean have been married for 56 years, they have been together for 58—a feat unusual for any couple involved in the entertainment industry.

“That’s a long time to be doing anything,” Parton expressed. “It’s nice to be married in this business.”

Movieguide® previously reported on Parton and Dean’s marriage:

Country music icon and Movieguide® Grace Prize® winner Dolly Parton recently shared a post on Instagram that featured her husband, Carl Thomas Dean.

The couple married in 1966 but have notably kept their relationship separate from the stage and Parton’s time in the spotlight.

However, Parton recently shared a picture of Dean with a photoshopped shirt advertising her “Vintage College Tee.”

“Find you a partner who will support you like my Carl Dean does!” her caption read.

After 55 years of marriage, Parton said that they still make time to go out on dates.

“We still have our little times, like in the springtime when the first daffodils come out,” Parton told People. “Even there’s still some snow around it, my husband always brings me a bouquet. And he’ll usually write me a little poem. Which to me, that’s priceless. That’s like a date in itself.”

“I’ll cook the stuff that I know we love,” she added. “And I pack it up in a picnic basket. And then we’ll go find some riverbank somewhere with our little camper, park, have a picnic. … We just do our little things like that.