Tyler Perry and Gelila Bekele Started Dating in 2007 — But They Never Got Married

Leila Kozma - Author

Jan. 29 2024, Updated 12:29 p.m. ET

tyler perry at netflix premiere
Source: Getty

"This is what a midlife crisis looks like. I'm 51, single, and wondering what the next chapter in my life will look like," Tyler Perry wrote in a Facebook post shared on Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020. The star appeared to have broken up with his long-term girlfriend and baby mama, Gelila Bekele. So, what went down between the two? How come they never got married?

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Was Tyler Perry ever married? He and Gelila Bekele never actually tied the knot.

"Whatever, it looks like I’m going to walk with God, be the best father and man I can be, hold my head up high, and try to look my best doing it!!" Tyler wrote on Facebook.

But it wasn't his inspirational message that caught fans' attention. Many took to the comment section to ask questions about his relationship status, which he put down as "single." Even though Tyler and Gelila started dating over a decade ago, they never got married.

tyler perry at sistas premiere
Source: Getty
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Reportedly, Tyler and Gelila met for the first time at a Prince concert in 2007, and they started dating sometime around 2009. However, they refrained from talking about their relationship in a public capacity for the most part. Tyler mentioned that he had a special someone when he appeared on the expediTIously with Tip TI Harris podcast, but didn't mention Gelila by name. "I have someone who's wonderful, and she's getting her share of all of [my wealth]," he said.

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Gelila was Tyler's long-term girlfriend and baby mama.

Tyler and Gelila welcomed their first and only son, Aman, on Nov. 30, 2014, per People.

It appears that becoming a father was more important to Tyler than it was to become a husband — and that he approached the latter with a sense of wariness.

"I'm not so sure, with this kind of work ethic, what kind of husband I will be. I don't know about marriage as much as I do know that I would be a great father," he explained during an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.

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Tyler and Gelila made efforts to protect the privacy of their son, Aman, as well. 

"I know there are no pictures of him, but that’s not something we do. We're not the kind of parents — my son's not famous. We're trying very hard to keep him protected so that he can know who he is before he gets into the crazy bull crap of this social media world," Tyler explained on The Rickey Smiley Morning Show. 

tyler perry at oscars
Source: Instagram

Does Tyler Perry have a girlfriend now?

Tyler has continued to keep his personal life private since his breakup from Gelila. There were rumors at one point that he was dating Sistas star Crystal Hayslett, but Devale Ellis (who is also on Sistas) confirmed that the two were only friends. Goodness knows Tyler has enough on his plate with all of his many entertainment projects plus being a dad. We may not know much about his romantic life at this time, but we wish him the best.

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