Terry and Rebecca King Crews are familiar Hollywood faces. The couple had their own reality series (The Family Crews), and Terry has starred in several notable projects, ranging from Everybody Hates Chris to America's Got Talent. The pair has teamed up on a new piece of work, "Stronger Together". EBONY caught up with Rebecca to talk about just how real things get in this Audible Original, which details the duos challenges and wins as husband and wife.
"Stronger Together" will be available for streaming on April 15th.
EBONY: Why an Audible Original, why now?
Rebecca Crews: Well, the truth is that Audible was most supportive of our vision. It’s important for people to hear us in our own voice and believe that our story is important because we made it through.
EBONY: I’m a huge fan of Black Love on OWN and it was great to see you and Terry there sharing your story. For people like myself who are familiar with your appearance on that series, what do you believe they will learn from this Audible Original that they would not have known prior?
RC: There’s a lot in the book that we delve into. What a lot of people don’t know is that Terry and I both grew up with fathers who dealt with alcoholism. In the abundance of ways that we are different, we relate to each other a great deal as well. We speak on marriage counseling, and how it has always been a constant throughout our relationship. We want people to know why we choose to stay together. Our gospel is one of redemption. There is no such thing as incompatible people, just unwilling people. My husband did the work to make us work.
EBONY: How has this recording experience impacted your marriage?
RC: I wondered how people would respond. When we did Black Love, people were surprised that I didn’t give a typical response to Terry’s struggles with dishonesty and addiction. I didn’t wave the proverbial flag of “men are all dogs,” I had compassion. So in this instance, we wondered how it would be due to how explicit we get in this project.
EBONY: You and Terry recount the events on the night that he was sexually assaulted by Adam Venit at an industry party. When Terry spoke out in support of the #Metoo movement, and shared about his experience, he elicited polarizing reactions. Why was this story important to share?
RC: We shared this story largely because we both believed that had this incident happened to “old Terry,” he would’ve been the one being sued. Terry had in prior years, before that night, the shortest of fuzes. I can remember being on Colorado Avenue once, after a date. We left the restaurant, and were walking back to our car. Three men were in front of us and had said some really disrespectful things to me. Terry beat all three of those men up, without hesitation. I told him that he stood to lose all of his opportunities if he always reacted that way when something set him off.
A common misconception about the night that Terry was assaulted was that he allowed it to happen without having a reaction. It should be known that Terry did push this man twice, and he felt he had reason to escalate things. It wasn’t a case where there was no reaction. He remembered what I told him and began to hold back. But he was irate, he almost broke the steering wheel off of our car when we left.
EBONY: In Chapter 9 entitled “Life Today” you recall a time where even you had felt temptation to step out in your marriage. That type of candor isn’t what we hear commonly from women, what made you decide to share that part of your story?
RC: Honestly, my husband. If my husband was able to tell his dirt then I could tell some of mine (chuckles). Even though I haven’t cheated, I have had temptations. I think women tend to feel this way as a response for not feeling like they’re getting the treatment that they deserve. At this time in my life I was upset about a lot of things, and there he was, this guy at church that embodied all of these great things. My attraction to him scared me. I told Terry's mom about the guy, and we both prayed on it. I wanted to honor my family. God delivered me, I woke up one morning and those feelings were all gone.
EBONY: You also shed light on your passion for singing. What does it feel like to be in the process of working on your first album?
RC: I’m excited and nervous. As a songwriter it's a vulnerable experience when you’re sharing your baby (song) with the world. Music is so vulnerable and intimate, you share your deepest and darkest hurt in your songwriting. I’m excited to see how people respond to the music and even have a new single coming out soon.
EBONY: Perseverance is a common theme throughout this project. At the hardest of moments, was it confidence or faith that allowed you to keep pushing forward?
RC: For me, it definitely wasn’t confidence. I was broken, I was laying on the floor for three days after learning of my husband’s infidelity a decade prior. When I said that I was done, I felt a feeling of finality. Even so, I was still gutted. On the third day I woke up and something said to call him, this voice continued to say call him. I felt that the Lord wanted me to give him a chance. If nothing improves then I will walk you out the door but God said give Terry once more chance. Incredibly, I felt like I couldn't say no to God.
EBONY: You've been through a lot individually and as a couple. Tell us what it means to feel and be “stronger together?”
RC: There is a feeling of newness. We’ve been in our new chapter for the last ten years. We’re beginning to move into the empty nester phase. We’ll probably move into another level of counseling as well. We have never had a time when it was just us.
The message I want to give couples is one of hope. I want them to know that everyone has faults and weaknesses. If you’re seeing someone who is incapable of putting in the work, then you need to walk. If their actions aren’t corresponding, then you have a choice to make. How you decide to leave is just as important as the decision to leave.
Stronger together an Audible Original is out today, April 15th