Everybody knows that Real Housewives of Atlanta star Phaedra Parks takes her Southern Belle status very seriously. So seriously, in fact, that she has written a self-help book on this very subject. Secrets of the Southern Belle: How to Be Nice, Work Hard, Look Pretty, Have Fun, and Never Have an Off Moment, which hits shelves on November 12, is Parks’ handbook on how to look, dress and act like a sophisticated Georgia peach. But beyond all the etiquette tips, there are a some fascinating revelations that might surprise you.
Phaedra Deceives Her Husband Apollo...
...But only when it comes to his wardrobe. For example, when picking out a suit for a wedding they were attending, Phaedra writes that she used a little reverse psychology on Apollo to trick him into buying the suit that she wanted for him, even though he wasn’t a fan. So how’d she pull it off? She picked out one suit that she didn’t like, and one that she did, then gave a lackluster response when Apollo modeled the former. But when he sported number two, she laid it on thick, and since Apollo was desperate to end the shopping trip, it was an easy sale. “The thing about men is," she writes, "if you make things easy enough for them, they will do what you want.”
Phaedra Once Had a Mystery Suitor
In addition to proper table manners, Phaedra also covers how the Southern Belle should approach romantic relationships. And if your man starts acting up, her advice is to play hard to get, until they come running back. She describes one incident in which she stopped taking a suitor’s call, only to have him hop on his bike and ride fifteen miles just to see her. “My evasion made him very eager,” she notes. But who exactly was this mystery suitor? Unfortunately, she doesn't dish.
She’s a Domestic Diva
Perhaps when you were in fifth grade you spent time hanging with friends on the playground, but Phaedra was in the kitchen, learning how to cook and clean. By the time she was eight, she was helping her mother clean the house every Saturday, and by the time she was in fifth grade, she knew how to make breakfast for her whole family.
She Has Regrets About Ayden’s Dedication Ceremony
You may remember the over-the-top, Coming to America-style bash Phaedra threw for her son Ayden’s dedication. But one thing you might not know is that Phaedra has a regret about that day—wardrobe choice. In the chapter about personal care and grooming, she writes “I have certainly let myself be talked into some garish choices, like the crystals I wore on my eyes at my son Ayden’s dedication.”
She's a Pageant Queen
Kenya Moore and Cynthia Bailey aren’t the only ones with modeling experience—Phaedra and her sister both participated in pageants as little girls. And Phaedra credits her comfort in the courtroom to her childhood on the pageant circuit. "Pageants teach you how to think and respond quickly (and hopefully intelligently) on your feet," she asserts. "[It] can teach you invaluable lessons about being graceful and poised in the midst of heated competition.
She's Been Calculating About Romantic Relationships
When it comes to relationships, Phaedra advises her readers to know what they are looking for, otherwise, it’s “like walking onto the supermarket without a shopping list. You’ll end up with all kinds of weird items in your cart and when you get home you still won’t have anything for dinner." So when she was single, she wrote a list of what she was looking for in a man, and when Apollo came along, he fit the bill. "I wanted someone who was generous, affectionate, intelligent, reliable...and of course he had to be handsome, too. So when Apollo came along, I identified his potential right away," she writes.
Are you surprised by any of Phaedra’s revelations? And are you excited she's back on RHOA? Tell us in the comments.