In Case You Missed It: Niecy Nash-Betts & Jessica Betts On ‘Tamron Hall Show’

On the Tuesday, October 4 edition of “Tamron Hall,” Niecy Nash-Betts and Jessica Betts, who tied the knot in an intimate ceremony in 2020, joined the show in-studio for a daytime exclusive interview about how their relationship blossomed and making history as the first same-sex couple to be featured on the cover of Essence magazine. The Emmy winning actress who stars in ABC’s “The Rookie: Feds” spoke about the personal importance of incorporating Jessica’s last name into her own and shared her honest conversation with daughter Dia about how she identifies. Jessica, who Niecy refers to as her ‘hersband,’ also gave insight as to how the couple transitioned from friendship to romantic partnership and explained how she hopes their groundbreaking Essence cover will open up the dialogue for further representation. See more inside and video clip…

Niecy Nash-Betts on incorporating Betts into her last name:

“I love my name. Like I love it. Even with my new series ‘The Rookie: Feds,’ the poster says ‘Niecy Nash-Betts,’ and when they first did it , it said ‘Niecy Nash,’ and I said ‘nah ah.’ And so when they changed it, and I posted it, so many people called me and were like ‘You go by Betts now?’ And I’m like ‘that’s my name!’”

Jessica on realizing she had romantic feelings for Niecy:

“Well, one night we were going to have crabs…and she was like ‘well I’ll meet you there,’ and I was late, you know, I arrived late, but when I got there, she had already started eating.” She continued, “And then as we were sitting there, and we were talking and I was like ‘wow.” You know, I just started seeing her different, just in that moment. Because at that point my relationship was over, and her relationship was over.” Niecy added, “Well I saw you different. I started sweating under my arms. My throat got dry.”

Niecy on ghosting Jessica after their first date:

“That was right after crabs…I wasn’t like ‘let’s get to it,’ she was like ‘let’s get to it.’ And then yes, I ghosted because I…Let me tell you something, this is the real truth, I was so afraid of losing her as a friend. If that messed it up, I would have never been able to forgive myself. Because I said I want to know this person until they throw dirt on my face. And if I can’t be your friend because of that, let’s just back up real quick and go back to that because I want to know you forever.”

Niecy on sharing how she identifies with her children:

“My daughter was like ‘How do you identify?’ And I said, ‘Huh?’ And she said, ‘Well, how do you identify?’ And I said ‘As Black and your momma.’ She was like ‘No, you gotta know. You gotta know, mom.’ And she made me watch a show all about, all the labels and all the names, and after it was over, my head was spinning. And she was like ‘Okay, so which one are you?’ And I was like ‘Girl, I’m more confused now than I was before this.’ I don’t know. I said, ‘If I have to coin it in the moment, I would say I’m Jess-sexual.’ Because I don’t know, I’ve never looked at anyone, male or female, and seen them the way I see her. So I don’t know, but right now I know I’m happy.”

Jessica on the iconic Essence magazine cover:

“Representation matters. And people want to see themselves and you know you don’t want to hide the fact that there are same-sex couples, and there are same-sex relationships. So representation matters and it’s life-changing not only just for us but for everyone who can identify and relate.”

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