Jimmy Carter talks wife Rosalynn on their 69th anniversary

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How Jimmy Carter Learned To Make His Wife Rosalynn A 'Full' Partner


President Jimmy Carter visited the set of HuffPost Live on July 7, the day of his 69th wedding anniversary, and explained the secret to nearly seven decades of marital bliss.

"The key to it all, I'll tell you, is marry the right woman," he told host Marc Lamont Hill.

Carter also revealed that when he first asked his wife, Rosalynn Carter, to marry him, she turned him down.

"For months, I was a midshipman with the Naval Academy, up there [in Virginia] having lost my loved one, while she was dating all the other boys in Sumpter County [in Georgia]," he said. "I think eventually, my white uniform prevailed."

See photos from Carter's 90th birthday:
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Jimmy Carter's 90th Bday
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Jimmy Carter talks wife Rosalynn on their 69th anniversary
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, blows out candles on a birthday cake as wife Rosalynn looks on during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter addresses Carter Center employees and volunteers during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, waves after blowing out candles on a birthday cake as wife Rosalynn looks on during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, holds the hand of wife Rosalynn as she wipes her eye while they are serenaded with the song "Imagine" by John Lennon during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter stands to applause from the crowd during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, center, walks through the crowd as he takes his seat for his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, is applauded by wife Rosalynn after giving a speech during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter's grandson, Errol, 4, runs past a birthday cake presented to him during his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, arrives with wife Rosalynn for a 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter, right, and wife Rosalynn applaud as a birthday cake is wheeled out for his 90th birthday celebration, Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/David Goldman)
Former President Jimmy Carter and his wife Rosalynn stand for the national anthem before a baseball game between the Atlanta Braves and the San Diego Padres Wednesday, June 10, 2015, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Bazemore)
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The former president said that over the course of the marriage, the couple evolved into a true partnership.Carter made a number of important decisions without consulting his wife, including leaving the Navy and running for the Georgia Senate.

"I learned soon after that that that was the wrong approach," he said. "And since then, she's been a full and precious and vital partner with me in everything i've done."

Watch the full conversation on HuffPost Live.

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