A happy 16-year marriage that produced three kids came to an end when a secret was revealed. Matthew and Jessica Turner opened up about why their marriage ended and how they continued to co-parent their children.
Getting married is far more than the legality of a union bound by legal papers; it is a lifetime commitment between two people who love each other. However, not all marriages last until the end.
After 16 years of marriage, Matthew and Jessica Turner divorced for reasons only a few could relate with. Still, they try to be the best parents to their three kids.
Matthew and Jessica Turner smile for a family photo with their three kids. | Source: instagram.com/matthewpaulturner
COMING OUT AS GAY
Matthew, a best-selling Christian children's book author, found difficulty coming to terms with the secret he hid from his wife. However, the truth eventually came out and ended their marriage. He shared:
"Being gay isn't a new discovery for me. However, as someone who spent 30+ years in fundamentalist/evangelical churches. [...] I lived many days overwhelmed by fear, shame, and self-hatred."
Despite his true identity, the couple fought to keep their marriage together. Sadly, the best step for Matthew was to go their separate ways. "I wanted Matthew to be whole and happy," Jessica said.
THE THREE KIDS
The pair share three kids, Ezra, 6, Adeline, 10, and Elias, 13, who all cried when they learned about the divorce. In an interview with Today, the pair shared that one of their kids asked why Matthew married Jessica if he was gay.
Jessica admitted that she grieves the loss of their relationship.
Matthew and Jesica continue to co-parent and equally spend time with their kids despite the circumstances they face. They also come together as a family during birthdays, holidays, and some special occasions.
THEIR LOVE STORY
The former couple first met in 2003 when Jessica was a college student at the University of Wisconsin and Matthew was the CCM Magazine editor.
Admittedly, Matthew fell in love with Jessica and decided to wed in 2004. At that time, he knew about the possibility of being gay but suppressed it due to his beliefs. He shared:
"I was very very afraid. Lots of going to God and asking him to take these feelings away. Lots of guilt and shame and just the determination to stay on the straight and narrow [...] I could not be gay. It was not acceptable."
In 2019, the pair tried marriage counseling after Matthew felt unhappy and depressed. It was only then that he revealed the possibility of being gay.
Jessica admitted that she grieves the loss of their relationship, especially since she saw a future with Matthew. While they will always be in each other's lives, it won't be the way she imagined.
Despite how their relationship turned out, Matthew and Jessica continue to support each other. Matthew even credited his ex-wife for helping him come out to the public.
Hearing news about divorce is nothing new nowadays, especially among celebrities. Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are among those who made their relationship work despite how their marriage turned out.
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