Omari Hardwick Shares Secret to His 11-Year Marriage: ‘Communication Is So Key’

Omari Hardwick is currently starring opposite Jennifer Lopez in the fast-paced Netflix drama, The Mother. In the film, Hardwick portrays a federal agent helping a retired assassin protect her daughter. In real life, the actor is father of two children, Nova age 10 and a son Brave, 8. He has also married to wife Jennifer “Jae” Pfautch for 11 years and recently shared his keys to a lasting marriage.

Hardwick told PEOPLE that “communication is so key” and “definitely” the most important component of a healthy relationship.

“Imagine all of the tasks and the responsibilities and duties. People who man a ship, a boat, imagine if they don’t do their job. Then that boat is just done — it capsizes, it sinks, it’s out of here. So that word is really dope and we don’t think about it enough. It’s a really a ‘relation-boat. It’s a ship.”

He continues, “If it’s romantic, you’ve got to really be about the ship, and the best way to relate to each other on the ship is to communicate so that those nights you don’t want to do that or those mornings you don’t want to do that, you get a bit of a hallway or bathroom pass, if you will. You get a pass because you’ve done it enough. You’ve tallied up your numbers at communication enough.”

“You can probably get away with it as long as communication, and respect would be next to it. Respect is the next-door neighbor,” he says, adding, “You just got to really respect the person you’re in that relationship with. Once that’s gone it’s really hard to get that back.”

In an Instagram post, Pfautch also shared some marital advice in a lengthy Instagram caption of a photo of herself and Hardwick smiling.

“Almost 11 years married to this guy. Wanna know my advice on dating and marriage?” She wrote, “One of the single most important things, in my opinion, is growth. Constant, perpetual, continual GROWTH in all facets. Look for someone who is always evolving. They aren’t going to magically fall in love with growth once you’re married, so look for it when you’re dating someone. Marry someone who loves to grow, get better, learn and progress. If they strive for growth in their own life, they’ll nurture your relationship towards growth the saaaame way.”

She added, “Growth is always sexy.”

Meanwhile, Hardwick has been trending on social media for hinting at a possible return to reprise his iconic role as Ghost from Power.

In speaking to The Associated Press, the actor said the right script could tempt him to return. “It would just have to be the perfect thing. They asked me to come back. They’ve asked me in the last year and a half to come back.”

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