Terry Crews: ‘You can’t love someone and control them at the same time’


Terry Crew and Rebecca King-Crews celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary earlier this month. It’s funny, I wrote a whole post on their celebration and yet just now, when I wrote out “30th wedding anniversary,” I sat back and said an internal “wow, 30 years.” It really is an accomplishment and especially because it seems like Terry and Rebecca continually try to better their relationship. Not in the “christ, why is this so hard,” way but by not taking anything for granted and reevaluating. Terry recently told Us the secret to their success and it’s not that hard – don’t try to control each other.

For Terry Crews and Rebecca King, the secret to marriage is “freedom” and “choice.”

The Brooklyn 99 actor, 51, opened up about his 30-year relationship with the gospel singer, 53, and how his definition of love has changed since he was younger.

“What I say a lot of times is: You can’t love someone and control them at the same time,” Crews told Us Weekly at an America’s Got Talent live show at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on Tuesday, August 20.

He continued, “As a man, especially being young, you feel like you need to control everything and that’s not love. You know? Love is freedom. Love is a choice.”

Despite their busy schedules, Crews said that he and his wife make the conscious effort to prioritize their relationship and find time for each other.

“If my wife had to come home because she had to, is that love? Or did she come home because she wanted to? See, that’s the difference,” he said. “You know, we really opened up that way and made sure our marriage was all about freedom and that we choose to be together, not we have to be together, you know what I mean? You show up. Make the choice. It’s a choice.”

[From Us]

I said it’s not that hard but that’s not true. For someone who is used to controlling, not controlling is one of the hardest things on the planet. And yet, I co-sign what Terry is saying, when you stop controlling those you love, the relationship is so much more fun. I think many of us, unfortunately, have had a friend – female and male – in a relationship where it seemed more like they “had” to be home than they “wanted to go” home. And when questioned, the answer is usually some variant on “ah well, we’ve been together forever.” We’ve discussed before about how Terry wasn’t always this present. He was probably very controlling in the beginning of his relationship with Rebecca. As I said, if you tend towards controlling those around you, even in a minor sense, it’s hard as hell to break. My controlling tendencies creep back in every once in a while, but I can’t see the value in it anymore. And clearly Terry can’t either. Of course, with someone as bada$$ as Rebecca, I bet he’d change a thousand times over to keep her happy.

Personal brag moment: when I was taking in Terry and Rebecca’s 30 years, I was reminded that my parents’ anniversary is next month. I got out a calculator because I’ve honestly stopped counting: 58 years. And still in love with each other. That makes me happy.




Photo credit: WENN Photos

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8 Responses to “Terry Crews: ‘You can’t love someone and control them at the same time’”

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  1. Lisa says:

    That is really good advice.

  2. Diana says:

    Genuine question: can you ask your parents for their marriage and relationship tips and share them in a post here? Being so in love after sharing such a lot of life together is a beautiful and wonderful thing! And as a 23 year old one and a half years into a great relationship, I’d love to hear what they’ve learned along the way 🙂

  3. HelloSunshine says:

    I love Terry Crews! He seems like such a genuine and nice person and the same goes for his wife. I love what he said here because it’s true. In my experience in my college years, controlling behavior came from people with very low self esteem (although that’s obviously not the only reason it happens).

    Side note: I finally started watching Brooklyn 99 and it’s so good! Now that I’m watching it, idk why it took me so long to pick it up.

  4. Joanna says:

    A lot of people have been brought up with the idea that the man is the head of the household. And men take it seriously, thinking that they are supposed to guide and lead the family. And the way they word it, sounds great. But imo, not so much for the woman. I literally told my husband, I want an equal partnership. Some things I didn’t agree with and would not do his way as he wanted. So we had some bad arguments for awhile, until he relaxed and stopped trying to push that idea. He’s a great guy, but he had been taught some toxic (imo) ideas. He also would not show any sadness or cry for years. He would go away from me to be alone, I think he thought it was showing weakness to cry. I just keep telling him, it’s ok to be sad or cry.

  5. Christin says:

    Congratulations on your parents’ anniversary!

    My folks celebrated 51 before they passed the same year. They believed in their vows, and were certainly tested through those years.

    What Terry says is so true. You have to step back and not try to make it about control or pressure. I think sometimes it seems easier to give up, or think something / someone else might be a better choice. One thing I have learned is that the grass looking greener elsewhere is often due to a lot of, um, ‘fertilizer’.

  6. K-Peace says:

    I love hearing about long-term marriages in Hollywood! It’s such a rare thing when a celebrity is still married to the same person after 30 years. I’m happy for Terry & Rebecca. He seems like a good person. And what he says about not trying to control your partner, is really good advice and something that i’m going to keep in mind. (since i’m somewhat of a “control freak”, which can be very hard for my husband to deal with.)

  7. MarcelMarcel says:

    I really needed to read this quote today. It’s so important and reminds me of Radical Acceptance by Tara Brach. If we can accept ourselves & each other it’s so much easier to be fully present & loving.