Dolly Parton children marriage husband Oprah Carl Dean

Country music icon Dolly Parton discussed her decision not to have children in an intimate new interview with Oprah Winfrey which revealed some surprising admissions. The country star has been married to her husband Carl Dean for 54 years, yet the two of them have never had children.

Dolly Parton Reveals To Oprah Why She Never Had Children

“I didn’t have children because I believed that God didn’t mean for me to have kids so everybody’s kids could be mine, so I could do things like Imagination Library because if I hadn’t had the freedom to work, I wouldn’t have done all the things I’ve done,” explained Parton, 74.

“I wouldn’t be in a position to do all of the things I’m doing now,” she added. 

Dolly Parton is the creator of the Imagination Library, which is a charity that provides books for children from infancy to the age of five free of charge in communities across the U.S., Canada, United Kingdom, Australia and the Republic of Ireland. 

Fox News reported that Dolly went on to tell Oprah that she believes that not having kids helped her find success in the music world. 

“Since I had no kids, and my husband was pretty independent, I had freedom,” she said. “So I think a big part of my whole success is the fact that I was free to work.”

Oprah then asked if the “sacrifices” she’s made in life outweigh the successes of her career. Parton responded, “I’ve made sacrifices, but I think, like I said, I believe what I know I’m supposed to do.”

Related: Dolly Parton Discusses Her Open Marriage And The ‘Affair’ That Left Her Feeling Suicidal

Dolly Parton’s Husband Isn’t A Fan Of Her Music 

Of course, the couple’s surprises don’t stop there.

Recently, Dolly revealed that despite how long they’ve been together, her husband Carl Dean isn’t a huge fan of her music. 

“He’s not necessarily one of the biggest fans of my music,” Parton said last year, according to USA Today. “He’s proud of me and he loves that I love what I do but … It’s a touchy subject. I’m like his little girl and he worries about that.”

Dolly explained that Dean likes hard rock, Led Zeppelin and bluegrass music, so “my music is somewhere in between.”

Carl Dean Stays Out Of The Spotlight

She added that she and her husband have a lot of respect for one another, which is why she doesn’t ever force him into the spotlight, as he likes his privacy.

“He does not want to be in the spotlight at all,” Parton told Entertainment Tonight. “That’s just not who he is. 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.”

Related: Dolly Parton Reveals Why Her Husband Of 54 Years Stays Out Of The Spotlight

In the entertainment industry, it’s rare to see a marriage that is able to stand the test of time. Clearly, these two are doing something right! 

You can watch Dolly Parton discuss her marriage and children with Oprah in the tweeted video below.

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