Two years into their marriage, singer Sapoun Midada and movie star Souer Sotheara have avoided all the typical showbiz relationship pitfalls – in fact, the couple are considered to be a model of marital bliss.
Sapoun Midada, 32, said he fell in love with Souer Sotheara long before his entertainment career took off. Lacking the courage to tell her how he felt, he pined away in silence for over two years.
But after he became a singer, he felt confident enough to reveal his love, phoning her up on Valentine’s Day. In return, Souer Sotheara gave a decidedly non rom-com response: she asked for 229 pink roses with a red one in the middle. Quite a hard ask, for Valentine’s Day.
“I wanted to test him, to find out whether he could do it or not,” she said. “I was pretty sure he wouldn’t be able to, but he did. I was so excited, and felt interested in him.”
Sapoun Midada acknowledged that “The first test my wife gave me was difficult,” but added “I never gave up. I can do anything for love.”
Unluckily for Sapoun Midada, however, the gauntlet did not end there – his courtship was a seemingly never-ending series of tests.
“One day, she asked me that what kind of flower women love the most. I tried to find the answer, and decided that every woman loves Pkar Sla in their lives. Then she asked me to find it for her,” he said.
But after the string of errands, the big day finally arrived. The pair got married in a three-day ceremony in mid-November 2009, with most of the Cambodian celebrity scene in attendance. Gossip mags and star-watchers originally gave the couple a grim prognosis – it was assumed that their high profile lives would add too much stress to the marriage.
But the couple maintains that paparazzi can’t damage their bond.
“Every magazine in the media working together could not affect our relationship, because we know each other so deeply,” said Souer Sotheara.
The couple agreed that the most memorable moment in their marriage is when they found out that Souer Sotheara was pregnant, which triggered a similar trial to her original Valentine’s Day challenge.
“When my wife was pregnant, she really wanted to eat dwarf guava,” said Sapoun Midada. “But at the time we were performing in France, and it was really hard to find that kind of fruit. I had no idea where to look.”
The husband turned France upside down, until eventually finding a fruit that was similar in shape and taste. It wasn’t quite a dwarf guava, but it did the trick.
“When my wife gave me a smile, I was very happy. I knew that being pregnant is not easy.”
Now they have a nine month old daughter, Sapoun Dara Pemean. The couple said that they hope she is the first of many.