For more from Anderson Cooper, pick up this week's Pride issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday

Since Anderson Cooper welcomed his son Wyatt Morgan on April 27, the CNN anchor has been enjoying every minute of fatherhood.

And what makes it even more special is sharing the experience with his best friend and former partner, Benjamin Maisani.

"There is no acrimony between us," Cooper, 53, says in PEOPLE's Pride issue, out Friday. "Even though it's maybe unconventional because he's my ex, he is my family."

"I knew what it was like growing up without a dad," adds the star, whose father Wyatt Emory Cooper died during heart surgery when Cooper was 10. "If there was ever something that happened to me, I would want Wyatt to be surrounded by love."

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anderson cooper and wyatt with benjamin
Anderson Cooper (R) with Benjamin Maisani and son Wyatt
| Credit: Melanie Acevedo
anderson cooper
Anderson Cooper and son Wyatt
| Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Cooper and Maisani's split was confirmed in March 2018 after they'd been together 10 years. They've remained in each other's lives since, and are planning to raise Wyatt together in Cooper's four-story converted firehouse.

"While we were a couple, he wasn't sure he wanted kids, which was one of the issues we'd always had," says the Anderson Cooper 360° star. "But when I decided, 'I'm just going to do this,' he started to be interested."

Anderson Cooper
Anderson Cooper and son Wyatt on the cover of PEOPLE's Pride issue
| Credit: Melanie Acevedo

Cooper adds that one surprising aspect of fatherhood is just how emotional he and Maisani have become.

"I cry at things I never cried at before," he says. "And Benjamin, I've never seen him cry ... but I couldn't believe how weepy he gets with Wyatt. I'm maybe a little bit of a harder egg to crack but I find myself being overwhelmed with emotion, and it's a lovely thing."

For more from Anderson Cooper, pick up this week's Pride issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.