Already mom to 10-year-old son Massai, Long and her boyfriend Ime Udoka recently welcomed their first child together — 8-month-old son Kez Sunday — but the proud parents aren’t looking to rush down the aisle any time soon.
“Marriage is not a priority for me. I’m not saying I’ll never do it; It’s just not where we are as a family,” the Mooz-lum star, 41, reveals in the August issue of Essence.
However, although confident in her choices, Long isn’t oblivious to the constant scrutiny from being in the public eye.
“I’ll be at home with my man, having a perfectly loving time, and I’ll see all these comments on some site about how wrong I am for not being married,” she says. “I don’t feel less loved or less loving because I’m not married.”
Admitting she has “never seen a marriage work,” Long is instead focused on finally having reached “emotional maturity” — from her life with Udoka to her relationship with Massai’s father.
“Massai’s dad and I have had the most challenging times, and I wasn’t always sure we wouldn’t end like my mother and father,” she says. “But we’ve arrived at a place where I can truly say he’s not a baby daddy, he’s my friend, finally. He is an amazing father.”
The mom-of-two has also recently reconciled with her own father; For Long, the growing bond between father and daughter has allowed her to reevaluate and evolve in her personal life.
“I’m a lot calmer. Less clingy and demanding. When Ime has to be gone for long stretches at a time, as he had to the first few months after Kez was born, I took it as an opportunity to nest,” she explains.
“It had been a minute since I had an infant and I had to get back into the rhythm of being a new mom. I really enjoyed having the space to do that at my own pace.”
Completely content with her family of four, everything in Long’s life is very much wanted — and perfectly planned.
“Motherhood is not easy, but it’s natural,” she says. “I worked hard to have the career I wanted, but I’ve also been deliberate about my personal life. None of this is a mistake.”