Dolly Parton has said that she has no regrets about her and husband of 57-years Carl Dean’s decision to not have children.
The country singer admitted that she’s "almost glad she never had children" as society is tough and non-progressive and makes it difficult to parent.
"It seems like we’re not making any progress... Nobody’s willing to listen to anybody else," she told Mojo magazine. "Everything is out there. Kids know everything, they see everything, they hear everything. We have to discuss stuff.
“I know this sounds like a selfish, awful thing to say, but I’m almost glad I never had children. I worry myself to death about my little nieces and nephews and grandnieces and grandnephews.”
"My husband and I, we just think of ourselves as each other’s child," she continued. "He’s my only child, and I’m his only child.”
The Jolene singer has previously addressed not having become a mother, most recently telling Oprah Winfrey in 2020 that she believes it was God’s will and it led to her caring about other people’s children and setting up her book-gifting programme for little ones.
She told the host: "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.
“If I hadn’t had the freedom to work, I wouldn’t have done all the things I’ve done. I wouldn’t be in a position to do all of the things I’m doing now.”
However, in 2016, she said she thinks she would’ve been a "great mother" but probably would have "given up everything else" if she became one, including her concert tours. “Everything would have changed," she told the Guardian. "I probably wouldn’t have been a star."
Parton, who turns 77 in January and said she has no intention of slowing down, has championed her global Imagination Library initiative for almost three decades, helped fund a Covid vaccine during lockdown and has given millions of dollars over the years to charitable causes.
Speaking to the Standard to promote her upcoming album Rockstar, which is due to be released on November 17, she said: “When I was young I used to wonder how I would be remembered and thought of if I made it in the business after I was old.
“I’m older now and it really touches my heart that people seem to care and that I have left some things that might have influenced some young people to say ‘well, this is how she did it, maybe I could do that’.”