'Tia & Tamera': Pregnant Tamera Mowry-Housley deals with critics, declares belly off-limits
Due at the end of October, Mowry-Housley says that she and husband Adam Housley, a Los Angeles-based Fox News Channel correspondent, have picked a name, but, "We're not telling anyone until he's born. I love it."
And she's loving life.
"I have no complaints," she says. "Everything's going great. I've been married for almost a year and a half, having a baby, have a hit show with my sister."
She rejoins twin sister Tia Mowry-Hardrict (on left, above) on Style Network when their reality show, "Tia & Tamera" returns with new episodes on Tuesday, Oct. 16. (She also has a Gospel Music Channel movie, "Christmas Angel," premiering Dec. 1, in which the expectant mother plays a parent on-screen for the first time.)
Although the Mowry siblings first gained fame in the '90s sitcom "Sister, Sister," playing fictional teen twins reunited after being separated and adopted out at birth, Mowry-Housley has had to get used to the sort of critiques that playing herself on TV can bring.
"It's one of the hardest things I've ever done," she says, "because I'm so used to hiding within a character and doing what I'm told. It's tough; I'm not going to lie. It's tough to be yourself, because I can't do anything halfway. I have to be 100 percent, completely myself. I have to allow myself to be vulnerable. You have to do that as an actress as well, but you hide within that character.
"Doing a reality show, you're open for the world to see. People are open to judge, and you're open to judging. As an actress, they're judging your talent; they're judging how you play your role. Whereas this, they're judging you as a human being. Fortunately, with our show, we have more positive than negative."
It's not the first time Mowry-Housley has experienced harsh criticism. After she and Housley married in May 2011, some people took to the Internet to share their objections to the match.
"There were certain Websites," says Mowry-Housley, "who were saying horrible things about the fact that we're an interracial couple. It's like, really? About that? it's 2012 -- at that time, it was 2011.
"We didn't even know the people. It was just a site that allows people to comment on a picture. ... More than one person was saying cruel things. So, we got it from both sides, and it's like, 'Oooh, that's weird.'"
That caused Housley to take to Twitter to defend his bride.
"That's one thing about my husband," says Mowry-Housley, "he was a professional baseball player, You don't mess with them. You say one thing that pisses them off, that's it."
While she's glad not to be married to a fellow actor, Mowry-Housley is enjoying her new role as the reporter's wife.
"One of the things I love about this," she says, "is the fact that he's a reporter. I didn't want to date someone who never lived outside his house. What I mean is, never traveled, never learned about other cultures. They just have that one-track mind.
"I find it sexy, that he's a correspondent. He's very intelligent, very eloquent. He knows how to speak; he knows how to communicate; he knows how to tell stories. I love listening to his stories. I love hearing about his adventures, when he travels. Now, sometimes, I get to to go along for the ride."
She adds, "I love it, because he understands scheduling, getting up, leaving, but he's not an actor."
One thing Mowry-Housley doesn't love is the way total strangers seem eager to touch her pregnant belly (seen at right, in a portrait Mowry-Housley tweeted out).
"I can't take it anymore," she says. "So, I can see the hand coming in slo-mo, and then I just quickly cover it... I just cover my belly with my hands, and I cover it before they can get to it, so what they do is touch my hands."
Asked what advice she has for people thinking of going in for a touch, Mowry-Housley says, "OK, realize that the belly is between two very important areas of a woman's body, and they're very private.
"Realize that. It's still part of her. It's her personal property! If she wasn't pregnant, would you just walk up and touch her?"