While she is most well-known for playing single woman Carrie Bradshaw in Sex and the City, an most recently starring in HBO series Divorce, Sarah Jessica Parker’s love life is quite different to her onscreen characters.
In a new interview with PEOPLE, the actress has opened up about her 20 happy years of marriage to Matthew Broderick and raising their three kids while working in the spotlight.
“I think marriage has a lot of vitality,” she said. “If you’re fortunate, it’s like this dazzling organism.”
Sarah and Matthew dated for five years before they tied the knot on May 19, 1997.
The duo invited 100 of their nearest and dearest to New York for what guests assumed was a party but was instead a surprise wedding, where Sarah walked down the aisle in her black wedding dress.
Since then, the couple have become parents to 15-year-old James Wilkie and 8-year-old twins, Tabitha and Loretta.
Sarah says she pins her happy years of marriage to connecting with each other no matter how things change.
“I feel like it changes,” she explained. “Your needs are shifting. You and your partner are going to change. It seems so silly, but I think you’re very lucky if you like the person. I still just really like him. I’m sure I annoy him and he annoys me, but I literally learn about him every day. I’m like, ‘You’re doing what? You’re reading what?’”
To maintain a healthy family culture, Sarah and Matthew place a priority on having “conversations” as a family.
“Our lives are unpredictable, and we’re not always here when we want to be,” she said. “We can’t always do drop-off and pick-up. But I’m proud that our children talk to us in the way they do. I’m glad they’re curious people.”
Sarah revealed that when she overhears her son talking with his friends, she is so proud of him.
“Sometimes I just sit on the stairs because they’re all in the kitchen, eating all the food, and I listen,” she said. “And I’m so charmed by their conversation. I’m so happy with the young man he’s becoming.”
Sarah also admitted that because her daughters Tabitha and Loretta are so different, sometimes she forgets they’re twins.
“They have different interests. They’re really devoted to each other, but they’ll also say, ‘I need time away from her.’ Tabitha can play by herself for hours. Loretta always needs to be checking in. They go to different schools. That’s Tabitha’s idea.”
Despite her busy schedule, Sarah still manages to have some time to herself when she can.
“I read. I always try to find time. Waiting for a child. I read on the subway,” she says. “On the set, I have a book hidden under a dress or under a couch. For me reading it's like disappearing. It transports me. And when I get into bed, I watch TV. I love TV. I love the news. It drives me bananas. I love watching Rachel Maddow. I love House Hunters International. I love Dateline. I love 30 for 30 on ESPN.”