Boris Kodjoe & Nicole Ari Parker on How to Have A Successful Marriage
Nothing inspires you to want great love in your life more than seeing it in action, right in front of you. Boris Kodjoe and Nicole Ari Parker, have been married for seven years after meeting on the set of Showtime’s Soul Food over ten years ago. Now, the two are ready to dish on how they have managed to maintain a successful marriage.
They caught up with Essence.com during the Valentine’s Day season and dished on the keys to a successful marriage. Boris says that being best friends is number one on the list. Nicole tells the ladies to tone down the nagging and stop following the ‘how to keep your man’ advice from your girls (Can I get an AMEN???). According to Nicole, your man will notice a good home cooked meal before he notices how great you look in those new shoes or purse.
Boris: I think what’s important is that you’re friends and that you like each other. That’s number one. If you like each other, you have fun with each other and you make each other laugh. You enjoy each others presence then that’s a great foundation to have, first of all. We make each other laugh and keep it sexy. It’s like with everything else — if you want to be successful in a business you have to work everyday to make that happen. A relationship is no different. If you want a relationship that’s flourishing and great and fun and successful, you’ve got to put effort into it every day. We try to do that for each other and with each other.
Nicole: As women we pass down a lot of misinformation on how to ‘keep your man’ or ‘get your man’ or all those things, and I think it’s really basic. I stopped doing a lot of unnecessary things. Like, he didn’t need me to show my love by organizing his sock drawer. I did a lot of things that he didn’t even notice. He’s not going to notice the new purse and I stopped thinking that he should. But when I cook for him, it’s Christmas in my house. When I cook food and you know what else. And after seven years of marriage, I took a lot of stress off myself. Being skinny or hair done, make-up, going to bed like this [points to self] and not putting the do-rag on…I just stopped with all the madness and became very conscious of what he does like, and he’s very conscious of what I like.
We [women] start out as the hot girlfriend that says “yes” to everything and we’re cool, fun and spontaneous, but after a while when they don’t listen, we become naggy. Now, two years after the marriage, you are standing there in your doo rag with a spatula in your hand screaming about the orange juice. It’s like, ‘how did I get here? I do not want to be this woman’. But it happens! In reality you have to check yourself, you have to check your tone and check your patience.
Boris also says that men need to show their women more attention — and that’s key to getting some good food and that good ‘good’:
Boris: “Guys have to be more present. When the wife walks in, it should be an event. You have to look up, you have to close the computer, and you have to say, hey baby, wow!”
Nicole: “When he does it, I feel like a million bucks. Then I’m nice all day. That’s when the food comes. I’m roasting chicken with rosemary and lavender, and everything.”
Boris: “Guys, it’s simple, very simple. Make her feel great and you get food and everything else.”
I just love these two together! Check out the video here.