On a recent episode of Nick Cannon’s morning show, songstress Keyshia Cole appeared with her boyfriend and baby daddy, Niko Hale. When Keyshia first debuted her boyfriend on social media, the pair faced backlash due to their huge age gap. The R&B star is 37 while her beau is only 23.
Cannon is very familiar with the idea of being a younger man with an older woman, given the fact he was once married to Mariah Carey, who is ten years his senior. But that shared experience with the couple turned annoying when Cannon crossed the line and referred to Keyshia as Niko’s “elder.”
“To be in a relationship and to start a family with someone like this, I mean, I’ve been in that situation before where I stepped into royalty, to a elder, and she guided me,” the father of three began.
“I am not a f*cking elder,” Keyshia quickly responded. But the “Wild N Out” creator wasn’t backing down easily.
“You are his elder.” Cannon persisted. “I am not his f*cking elder,” Keyshia repeated.
“Yes you are, embrace it.” Cannon encouraged. “You are his elder what would you call it?”
“Mariah is your elder,” Keyshia said triumphantly, a sentiment Cannon accepted willingly.
“She is! She was, and I embraced it. There was nothing wrong with being a younger man that was molded and shaped by someone who was older,” the divorced comedian explained.
“She molded and shaped you?” Keyshia asked.
“Yes, I learned so much from Mariah, and I will be forever in debt to how she allowed me to come into manhood. That’s when I became a man–when I got married and had children.”
It’s fair to say Keyshia gets sensitive about the criticism concerning her relationship. In early March, the “Sent From Heaven” crooner wrote in a now deleted Instagram post,
“Now the reason I’m posting The pepper to my salt @nikokhale is because he’s been such a sweetheart to me, and I kno people have been very judgmental about our relationship but I gotta nurture what nurtures me.”
Keyshia and Niko welcomed their first son into the world in August. This is the second child for Keyshia, who shares a 9-year-old with her ex husband, Daniel Gibson.