Garth Brooks is happily married to fellow country music superstar Trisha Yearwood. Despite having no kids between them, the "Perfect Love" singer is a wonderful bonus mother to her husband's three children.
Garth Brooks had been married to his first wife, Sandy Mahl, for fifteen years when the two went separate ways, but even though the marriage did not work in the long run, Mahl still holds a special place in the singer's heart.
Brooks and Mahl had met in a bar near Oklahoma State University, where they both studied. Brooks was a bouncer at the bar while Mahl was a patron. Their first encounter came when Brooks broke a fight that Mahl had somehow gotten involved in.
Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks at Waldorf Astoria Hotel on November 17, 2014 in New York City. [left] Brooks with his daughter Allie [Right] | Source: Getty Images & Instagram/Allie Colleen
They married on May 24, 1986, but in 2001, the pair called it quits after 15 years and three children together. Mahl credited Brooks' busy schedule to be the cause of their split. She says the "Friends In Low Places" singer would be gone for eight to ten weeks at a time.
And when he would come home, he would still be busy with parties, shows, and Awards. Mahl says her husband's demanding schedule caused them to grow apart quickly.
Garth Brooks and Sandy Mahl at Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, California, United States. | Source: Getty Images
But despite their marriage's demise, the two remain friends. In Brooks' documentary titled "The Road I'm On," he refers to Mahl as "phenomenal." As reported by US Weekly, he said:
"What really surprised me was Sandy, the girls' mom. She was phenomenal."
Brooks says he was gone so much during their marriage that there must have been things that Mahl had always tried telling him but couldn't.
Garth Brooks and Sandy Mahl at Universal Amphitheatre in Universal City, California, United States. | Source: Getty Images
"It's rare you get to hear the other side. I just saw her, and I think I hugged her harder than I ever have now that I know things that either I didn't hear or that she didn't say until now," he added.
Following their divorce, the pair focused on co-parenting their daughters Taylor, August, and Allie. Brooks shared that the two ensured the children saw both their parents in the morning and the evenings, without fail.
GIVING LOVE A SECOND CHANCE
He disclosed that by doing what was suitable for the kids, they were doing what was right for them. In 2005, Brooks married country singer Trisha Yearwood, whom he'd met back in 1987 while recording a demo.
Trisha Yearwood and Garth Brooks on November 18, 2019 in New York City | Source: Getty Images
Surprisingly, Mahl and the girls received Yearwood well, and as Mahl would say in the documentary, she thought Brooks marrying Yearwood was best for their kids. According to Good Housekeeping, she told Brooks:
"I think this is a really good move for you, and I think this is a really good move for our children."
The kids, too, felt the new chapter in their lives would be exciting, and according to the eldest, Taylor, bad food days were over. She disclosed that their father often did boxed macaroni and cheese and frozen chicken, but that soon changed when Yearwood came into the picture.
With no kids of her own, stepmotherhood was uncharted territory for the "I Need You" singer, and at first, it was difficult. She soon recognized that the role would take some getting used to.
"When you don't have children, you have the luxury of being selfish because it's just about you. You don't have to think about somebody else first," she shared. But once she found her footing, it became easy.
She and the girls, Taylor, 29, August, 27, and Allie, 25, have since formed an unbreakable bond, but even so, Yearwood prefers the term "bonus mom" because "stepmom" gives off some negative connotations. She told SheKnows:
"When I think stepmom, I think Cinderella, you know, so I always prefer bonus mom."
Yearwood says the girls have given her "a lot of grace" and have been a gift she did not know she needed. But the best parenting advice came from Brooks. He told her not to try to be their best friend or mom, and she would soon find her way with each of them.
Brooks and Yearwood have always shielded their daughters from the limelight. Taylor studied history at Oklahoma State University, then did a post-graduate degree in Theology at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. Her dating life remains a mystery.
The couple's second daughter, August, is a mom. She welcomed daughter Karalynn in 2013 with her high school sweetheart, Chance Michael Russell. They had their wedding shortly after their daughter's birth.
IT'S DIFFICULT BEING MARRIED TO BROOKS
Yearwood is a bonus mom and a renowned country music singer. She rose to fame after releasing her 1991 debut single "She's in Love with the Boy," which became a number one hit on the Billboard country singles chart.
The corresponding self-titled debut album would sell over two million copies. Yearwood has since had success in her music career and her marriage to fellow country singer Brooks.
However, it has not all been sunshine and roses. Their marriage, like any other, has had its fair share of difficulties. Yearwood shared why being married to "The Dance" singer can be difficult.
Yearwood explained that they are both very independent people, and like ship captains, they both want to steer the ship. Unsurprisingly, that kind of arrangement will often cause them to butt heads.
The "I Need You" singer disclosed that she would always bail when the going got tough in her previous relationships. However, things changed during quarantine because, with nowhere to go, the couple had to face conversations head-on. She told US Weekly:
"So in this situation, that's not an option because this is the love of my life, you know? So you sit down, and you talk it through and, and that gets you better when you get to the other side."
Yearwood and Brooks have always found common ground by figuring out how they can both remain alphas and do their things but still be a loving couple and maintain their relationship at the end of the day.
This approach to life has borne fruit. The musical couple is much stronger and is looking forward to spending many years together.