Quinta Brunson on Her Husband, Representation, and ‘Abbott Elementary’



  • Quinta Brunson said that she doesn’t have to “dim” herself for her husband.
  • The “Abbott Elementary” creator also said that previous partners couldn’t handle her full self.
  • The full interview between Brunson and Oprah Winfrey will air on November 26.

Quinta Brunson said that her husband Kevin Jay Anik is her “biggest support,” adding that she never feels like she needs to “dim” herself with him. 

Speaking with Oprah Winfrey in an interview that will air on the Oraph Winfrey Network on November 26, the “Abbott Elementary” creator and star said that in the past, she’s dated men who couldn’t handle her at her full self. 

“To be 100% fully me requires a lot of stuff that a lot of men do not have time for,” Bruson said in a clip exclusive to Insider. She recalled some past partners trying to adapt until they “realized there’s no dimming me.”

“My husband, that’s what I mean by him being the biggest support, that there is no need to dim me at all,” she continued. “That allows me to love him fully and be the person that I want to be, and am meant to be.”

Brunson added that people sometimes “automatically go to the most negative things” when she speaks about not having to “dim” herself, like having the ability to cheat, which isn’t what she means. She told Winfrey she wants to be fully herself in a relationship — “which, you would be surprised, is a problem for a lot of people,” she said.

Brunson said that the “last place” that she would want to have to “dim” herself is in her own home. 

“That’s my sanctuary. I just won’t. I won’t have it,” she told Winfrey. “I’d just be single, so I’m fortunate to find a partner who I still feel I can be my full self with.”

While Brunson doesn’t often speak publicly about Anik, she revealed in her 2021 memoir “She Memes Well” that they met through mutual friends, eventually hitting it off at a friend’s birthday party. In the book, she describes how he’s supported her in the past, from accompanying her through crowds at a Dodgers baseball game to showing up “without being asked” after the shooting death of her 17-year-old cousin.

In another clip from the interview, the “Abbott Elementary” showrunner spoke with Winfrey about representation in her industry and the importance of network television. 

“I see my generation taking the next steps,” Bruson said. “We now are able to tell more nuanced stories and I think ‘Abbott’ is a part of that.”

Brunson previously told Entertainment Weekly that she felt the “key to more diversity in television” wasn’t placing “characters into a white world” on the screen, but rather telling the stories that would naturally bring non-white characters and actors to the forefront. 

“I hope that more of my generation comes to network television, and they get to touch a lot of people all at once,” Brunson told Winfrey. “I think streaming and cable have been where we’ve veered to naturally to tell our smaller stories, but I think giving those stories to everyone could be really, really cool, and help the world see us all in a different way.”

“OWN Spotlight: Oprah and Quinta Brunson Abbott Elementary” will air on the Oprah Winfrey Network on November 26 at 9 pm ET/6 pm PT. 



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