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Derek Ramsay on married life with Ellen Adarna: It’s really peaceful

Nathalie M. Tomada - The Philippine Star
Derek Ramsay on married life with Ellen Adarna: Itâs really peaceful
Derek with wife Ellen Adarna and Elias, whom the actor treats as his own son.

MANILA, Philippines — Derek Ramsay and Ellen Adarna love to play funny pranks on each other and share crazy couple antics online, including yoga poses that inspire memes. But away from the public eye and the social media spotlight, there’s one word to describe their married life — peaceful.

“That’s the word. It’s really peaceful,” Derek told The STAR in a virtual one-on-one recently.

Derek has been married to the Cebuana actress since November of last year after a whirlwind pandemic romance. The actor is very much aware that there was a lot of noise and perhaps not a lot of optimism from showbiz watchers when they got together. But look at where they are now — it appears that they’re proving detractors wrong.

“We’re not doing all of this to prove them wrong. We’re just living our life. That’s where the focus is and (I think) that’s why it’s working. Sometimes, we get distracted by focusing on the wrong things, you know? Everyone has something to say. And especially with a career that I’ve had… if I paid attention to all of that, then I wouldn’t be where I am now,” he reflected.

According to Derek, the pandemic was like pressing the reset button and reassessing his priorities, which could be why some of his major life events — getting engaged, tying the knot and building a family with Ellen — happened during this time.

Reflecting more on his marriage, he looked back on how other people ruled him out as the perpetual bachelor — the guy who never wanted to marry — and then he surprised many by taking the plunge at the age of 45.

“I’ve always had respect for the word ‘marriage.’ And my parents have been happily married for 50 years. I want that and I know I have that now with Ellen,” he said.

With successive breakup news grabbing showbiz headlines recently, he said, “Sad to see that lots of marriages, especially in our industry, that are failing. It’s really, really sad to see. And what’s even sadder is people assuming other couples are gonna go the same way. Kung ganun, what’s the point of marriage, right?

“Ako, I’m confident to tell the world that with everything I’ve been through in life, in my relationships, I made a lot of mistakes, I learned from them. And when I found ‘The One,’ all of those things are out the door and you just build the confidence. And, you know, what you see on Instagram with Ellen, it’s not acted out. That’s who we really are. We are not portraying the happiness, no matter what anyone says. I’m proud of what we have,” he added.

What Derek realized though about finding a lifetime partner is that there’s no correct formula. “There’s no formula for being a parent or finding ‘The One.’ You just have to always keep your eyes and heart open. When you get into a relationship, if it fails, there shouldn’t be hatred towards another, you should weigh the scale and not forget the good times. And move forward because that’s the only way you’ll be able to open your eyes and open your heart to find the right one.”

With his New York Film Academy-educated brother Andrew Ramsay, who is now following in his footsteps and pursuing an acting career.
Photos from Derek’s Instagram account

Meanwhile, Derek said they’re planning to expand their family and try having a baby already by the end of the year.

“Most definitely yes. It’s freaking me out because I don’t want a girl. Well, it’s not that I don’t want to, but I think I will be too protective of her. But kung ano bigay ni Lord, I will be happy. But we always talk about it and Ellen laughs about it, because she sees how protective na I am of Elias,” he said of the actress’ son with actor and ex-partner John Lloyd Cruz.

Derek treats the four-year-old like his own son. He said he’s enjoying every moment spent with Elias and growing their relationship.

“We really want to solidify that bond. Honeymoon nga namin we brought him. I told Ellen he can’t miss out on this, it’s Africa. Best decision that we made. He was such an easy boy to take care of. No tantrums. (To think) going on a safari as an adult is not easy, it’s tiring,” he said.

Asked if he and Ellen are still in the honeymoon period, Derek said, “I told Ellen, this relationship is always going to be a honeymoon stage. We started this relationship without putting any best foot forward.”

And to keep that honeymoon glow burning, the actor said, “We always have ‘Ellen and Derek time’ every day — whether it’s the end of the night, even if we’re both tired or when we’re putting (Elias) to bed. At least, meron kaming time na magkatabi kami, mag-usap kami, konting kwentuhan and we fall asleep in each other’s arms. And how can you get sick of that kind of life? Waking up in the arms of someone who loves you unconditionally.”

Meanwhile, The STAR asked Derek, who is on a hiatus from acting, about any plans of making a showbiz comeback.

He said his priority right now is his family.

“I’m not sad about it. I did so much. I enjoyed doing it. It was a rollercoaster ride and like any rollercoaster ride, it has to end. You have to grasp that, you really do,” he explained.

“Parang yung attention ng tao, ang bilis magsawa, ang bilis mag-lipat ng focus, as an artist, it’s also healthy for you, mentally, that you have to grasp that. There’s always gonna be another guy who’s talented or more talented than you, with something new to bring to the table because they either learn from you or other actors, and they have access to all these new ways… and they just get better and better.

“You have to be able to grasp that. You’ve been there. You enjoyed it. That’s somebody else’s now,” added Derek. (Interestingly though, his youngest sibling, Andrew Ramsay, who was educated at the New York Film Academy and trained at the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts, as well as the Philippine Educational Theater Association or PETA, is the one pursuing acting right now. He’s starring in the Cinemalaya 2022 film Ginhawa.)

Derek continued, “For longevity, you can step up your game or you can try different things, but right now, my happiness is my family.”

His current state in life is also what motivated him to pursue his other passion, which is “building and constructing beautiful homes” and “making a living out of that for my family.”

“But you’ll never know. If there’s a nice movie that really gets (my attention) and it will not keep me away too much from my family, then definitely, I might consider that. But a teleserye and things like that, medyo malabo na,” he said.

DEREK RAMSAY

ELLEN ADARNA

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