Actor Romnick Sarmenta, in his prime, was a sought-after matinee idol throughout the 80s and 90s. His love team with actress Sheryl Cruz was a hit. However, when he married actress Harlene Bautista in 1999, the two temporarily left show business.
According to Romnick, it was a conscious decision that he and his wife made as they want to become hands-on parents.
“Kami kasi ni Harlene, ayaw kasi namin ‘yung feeling na pagka-may kailangan ‘yung anak mo or may sakit or may masakit sa anak mo, tumatakbo sa yaya. Gusto namin sa amin tumatakbo eh so nagdecide kami.”
“Sabi namin konting panahon lang kasi ang mga bata. I mean lahat ng magulang siguro maiisip ‘to. Up to a certain time, lalayo at lalayo sila sa’yo. Magtatayo sila ng sarili nilang pamilya. And they only have a number of years para maenjoy mo ‘yung company nila and hopefully, mabuild mo ‘yung character nila,” he added.
Further, Romnick stressed, “We can always have time for our own plans pero ‘yung mga bata na ipinagkatiwala sa’tin ng mga Diyos, kailangan nandoon tayo while they’re growing up.” He said that this is the reason why they never hired helpers for their children.
Together for 18 years now, the couple have five children. Romnick met Harlene when he was only five. Seeing each other again through the ABS-CBN show Talents Unlimited, he courted Harlene after. “Naghuhulog ako ng sulat sa bag. And then nalaman niyang ako ‘yun. Tapos after a while, nagkahiwalay kami dahil sa trabaho so hindi kami nag-usap ng more than 12 years. After naming hindi mag-usap ng more than 12 years, parang mayroon kaming common friend na pinagkita kami ulit tapos nagkakwentuhan then nagkaalaman kung ano talaga ang totoong nangyari so nagkapatawaran. After a few months, pinakasalan ko,” he narrated.