Dolly Parton & Husband Carl Thomas Dean; Photo Courtesy of Instagram
Dolly Parton & Husband Carl Thomas Dean; Photo Courtesy of Instagram

Dolly Parton Reveals The Secret To Her 56-Year Marriage To Husband Carl Dean

Dolly Parton recently revealed the secret behind her 56-year marriage to her husband, Carl Dean.

In a conversation with ET Canada, Parton credited her “warped sense of humor” as the thing that’s kept her marriage happy.

“I like it when people say, ‘How did it last so long?’ I say, ‘I stay going,'” Parton explained. “You know, there’s a lot to be said about that. So we’re not in each other’s face all the time. He’s not in the business, so we have different interests, but yet we have the things we love to do together. So it was meant to be, I think. He was the one I was supposed to have and vice versa.”

“We both have a warped sense of humor. And I think humor, honestly, is one of the best things when you’re married like that,” Parton continued. “Even if you have a problem if you have a great sense of humor, if you say something you can’t take back [you] usually have some crazy way of getting out of it. We’ve never had, you know, serious arguments to say bad things to each other we have to take back,” she said.


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Parton married Dean in 1966. The couple met two years earlier outside the Wishy Washy laundromat in Nashville.

In a Dec. 1 exclusive interview with Closer, Parton described Dean as a “country boy” who values his privacy. 

“He loves to work on his tractors, he was in asphalt paving. He likes the privacy, and he would never in a million years do an interview,” she shared. In addition, Parton revealed she and Dean enjoy taking road trips in their RV together, adding that they “get along great” and “have a lot of fun together.”

Parton is also planning to honor her long-time husband, Dean on her upcoming rock album, according to E! Online.

“I’m going to do a lot of his favorite songs,” Parton told the outlet. “He loves Mick Jagger, he loves “Satisfaction”—those kind of songs. He loves rock ‘n’ roll, he loves Led Zeppelin and he loves ‘Stairway to Heaven.’ So I’m going to do a lot of things like that for him.”


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In addition to honoring her husband on her new rock album, Parton is no longer planning to tour so she and Dean can spend more time together.

“I like to stay a little closer to home with my husband,” Parton told Pollstar Magazine back in October. “We’re getting older now, and I don’t want to be gone for four or five weeks at a time. Something could happen. I would not feel right about that, if I were gone and somebody needed me.”

“I would feel bad if I had to leave a tour if somebody got sick at home and needed me and then I had to walk out on the fans,” she admitted.

Though Parton is ending touring, she does have one more exciting gig to prepare for: hosting a New Year’s Eve special.

Parton will share co-hosting duties alongside her goddaughter, Miley Cyrus as part of Miley’s New Year’s Eve Party on Dec. 31 on NBC starting at 10:30 pm. Eastern.


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