Wanda Sykes has kept us laughing for decades, thanks to her dozens of contributions to film and TV – both animated and live-action. In the former category, her best-known credits include Over the Hedge, Ice Age and Barnyard, while the latter boasts projects like Evan Almighty, Pootie Tang and Bad Moms. She’s one of the most recognizable female comedians of her generation and somehow has a knack for keeping her viewers in high spirits, even when her personal life feels like it’s in shambles.

Currently, the 59-year-old is out of the closet and married to Alex Niedbalski, whom she seems the happiest she’s ever been with. Before she came out as a lesbian, Sykes was married to Dave Hall from 1991 to 1998. She’s previously described their relationship as “bad” while chatting with The New York Times. “I wanted to get away. Like: ‘God, there’s his stupid face, and he’s chewing. Ugh, does he have to breathe? Make him stop breathing.’ Now I’m in a great relationship, and I’m happy, so my wife’s chewing doesn’t annoy me.” Now that we know Sykes is in a better place romantically, let’s get to know her other half a bit more intimately.

Who Is Alex Sykes?

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Not a lot is known about Wanda’s wife, Alex, besides the fact that she has a French accent, which her longtime partner has been known to imitate during her comedy routines on occasion. She’s on Instagram @iamalexsykes, where she shares updates on her many travels, both solo and with Wanda by her side. She worked in the interior design industry when first connecting with her wife in 2006, though it’s unclear if she’s still taking clients or focusing on partnership and motherhood.

Not long after their 2008 wedding, the Sykes’ welcomed twins – Olivia Lou and Lucas Clyde – in 2009. Their life is largely lived away from the cameras. Though we do know they parle français with Alex in front of Wanda, the only non-fluent family member, to keep her on her toes. “I’m picking up little words, but I can tell when they’re about to pull something over on me because they speak fast and in a lower tone,” the Virginia native once told Seth Meyers.

How Did They Meet?

So, how did the creatively-inclined duo come together in the first place? A fateful trip to Fire Island in the mid-2000s! At the time, the buzzing actress was remodelling her kitchen when she was introduced to a blonde, single Frenchwoman who happened to work in granite countertop sales. They hit it off immediately, with Wanda later dishing to The Guardian, “Something really said to me – like, audibly – ‘Wow, that’s what you need, Wanda.’” When they were wed on October 25th, 2008, the stand-up star had not yet come out to the world as a lesbian. Just a few weeks later, though, she shared the news about her sexuality and marital status to much fanfare.

Wanda and Alex Sykes Become Parents

As it turns out, had she not met her foreign lover nearly two decades ago, Wanda might not have become a parent at all. “I didn’t want kids. I had no vision of having kids at all. And when I met my wife, she — that was her thing. ‘Look. Right up front, I want kids.’ And I was like, ‘Well, can you give me, like, six months to think about it? And let’s just continue dating, and then we’ll see. And if I know it’s not for me, then, you know, we’ll just call this quits, and you go on and find somebody who wants to have kids,” she shared in an NPR interview.

Clearly Alex has the magic touch, as her future wife had no problem adjusting her blueprint to make their relationship work. “After that six months, even before then, I quickly was, like, ‘You know? Why wouldn’t you want kids? Why wouldn’t you want to start a family with this person?’ And it’s the best decision I’ve ever made,” Sykes concluded.

Wanda Sykes Addresses Divorce Rumors

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Online, it looks like Wanda and Alex are two peas in a pod, living their best lives together. Still, it’s important to note that things haven’t always been a breeze for them. Being part of an interracial and LGBTQ+ relationship in the public eye comes with criticism from close-minded onlookers. And a major health scare (a breast cancer diagnosis and subsequent double mastectomy) in 2011 left the Emmy Award winner leaning on her wife heavily. Thankfully, the partners navigated this tough time like pros, using it to strengthen their bond in the long run.

More recently, they (like virtually every other celebrity couple) found themselves plagued by rumors of divorce. In a February 2021 appearance on The Ellen Degeneres Show, Wanda Sykes playfully laughed the gossip off. “Oh, God no. Oh no, everything is good here. But you’re making me a little nervous though. Maybe I should go follow her on Instagram, see what she’s yappin’ about! But no, it’s all good here. Matter of fact, we were just talking about getting a new mattress!” Their appearance together at the Critics Choice Awards following that only further assured anyone concerned about their marriage, which looks to still be going strong.