Since her breakthrough role in the 2001 film Baby Boy, Taraji P. Henson has been making a name for herself as a serious actor by taking on meaty film and TV roles, but she only became a household name in 2015 when she slayed the world as Cookie Lyon on the critically-acclaimed smash series Empire. Much like her beloved character, Henson has proved that she's got a tough-as-nails, no nonsense approach to her private life, and as her fame grows remarkably fast, she's not about to give away all her secrets. It's natural that Empire fans want to know who Taraji P. Henson is dating, but good luck getting it out of her.
Most recently the 45-year-old star was linked to NFL player Kelvin Hayden. The two were spotted holding hands on the beach in Miami over the New Year's holiday, but Henson was quick to shoot down rumors of a romance. Wendy Williams asked Henson if she was dating the man she was "photographed with" and Henson told her, flat-out, "Yeah, you can’t believe everything you read. Until you hear it from me, it’s false."
So that's that. We may not get a straight answer about her status with the adorable football player, but Henson has given plenty of quotes that show how seriously she feels about keeping her private life to herself.
It's All About The Ring
Henson told Steve Harvey in 2015: "If this finger is naked, no one gets claimed... You do not get to say ‘I dated Taraji P. Henson’ ... If you’re not serious, don’t even open your mouth. Shake my hand and keep it moving. I’ve accomplished so much in my life and right now, I just want someone to share it with."
She Definitely Has A Type
She told Harper's Bazaar: "He is funny, has personality, he doesn't take himself too seriously. He needs to be confident in who he is, confident to let me be who I am. And let me shine, you know? My light is only going to enhance his light."
What She Wants Out Of A Man
And she told Glamour:
I’m not twenty-something. I’m not trying to find myself — I know exactly who I am and exactly what I want. And I don’t want a fan. I want a man who understands me, who challenges me, who calls me on my sh*t instead of letting me get away with it because I’m supposed to be a star. I want a best friend.
Maintaining Her Privacy
I always wanted to be known for my work. Not who I dated. Not who I slept with... I have a gift, and my gift is acting. I started in the business at 26 with a kid, so I was smart enough to know reality from fantasy. I didn't want to blur the lines. This is a job that I have to do. I cannot get caught up in it. And if I sleep with these guys, why would they want to work with me again?
Props to Henson for always keeping it real and giving her honest, candid thoughts about life and love. Whether she's single or seeing someone special, it's refreshing to know that she goes after exactly what she wants... a little bit of Cookie that we should all take to heart.