Rumours all was not well with popstars Cheryl and Liam Payne’s relationship have been floating around for a while.
The couple surprised everyone when they first got together in 2016 but the arrival of their son, Bear, in March last year, seemed to set the seal on a happy union between the Girls Aloud and One Direction stars.
Now, though, they’ve announced they are going their separate ways. The couple confirmed their split in an official statement, posted on both their Twitter accounts yesterday:
We are sad to announce that we are going our separate ways. It's been a tough decision for us to make. We still have so much love for each other as a family. Bear is our world and we ask that you respect his privacy as we navigate our way through this together.
— Cheryl (@CherylOfficial) July 1, 2018
Cheryl’s official statement reads: We are sad to announce that we are going our separate ways. It’s been a tough decision for us to make. We still have so much love for each other as a family. Bear is our world and we ask that you respect his privacy as we navigate our way through this together.
Both have said Bear is their number one priority – but co-parenting can be difficult when you’re an average couple, never mind jet-setting superstars. We’ve come up with a few tips to help them as he gets older.
It’s all very well to have an army of PAs and support staff to organise your diary and make your travel arrangements. But this is about your son. He’s the most important person in this arrangement, not the two of you.
When you’re busy, even if it’s easier to let other people take care of the details, make the effort to talk to each other rather than through a third party. It will benefit all of you in the long run.
Yes, ok. If you’re about to go on stage in front of an adoring audience of thousands we realise it’s probably impossible to make a personal call. In that situation, we can probably forgive you. Just don’t make a habit of it.
2Co-ordinate over holidays and gifts
Whether you’re spending Christmas and birthdays together or apart, you’ll need to discuss what presents you plan to get for your son.
The last thing you want is for both of you to have the same idea. Just imagine how disappointing it would be to receive two original props from the Avengers: Infinity War movie! Especially if he was secretly hoping for Taylor Swift to show up in person and perform some of her hits instead.
3Grit your teeth if you need to
You’re both in the public eye, so there may be times when you see each other’s antics splashed all over the tabloids – and it might not always be flattering.
If one of you does something the other doesn’t agree with, don’t take to social media to call them out. We’ve seen other celebrities do this and it’s really not classy. And there’s always the possibility the facts have been manipulated, exaggerated or even made up.
Hopefully, it’ll be a while before Bear is old enough to read the gossip columns, so he doesn’t need to know what’s going on. Keep it between the two of you. (And if you’re talking to each other regularly, as suggested above, you’ll be able to discuss the truth about what happened anyway…)
4Share the details
We know it’s funny to let the other parent struggle sometimes, but you need to play nicely.
If you’ve found a sure-fire way to get Bear to sleep when he’s unsettled, if he’s got a new favourite treat or you’ve discovered how to say ‘No’ to something without upsetting him, tell each other.
Parenting is hard enough at the best of times; we all deserve to know the little tips that make it easier.
Kids are like sponges – they absorb everything. They pick up on moods and emotions. So it’s important you treat each other kindly. Show Bear that, while you may not be together, you’re still part of the same family and he’s right at the heart of it.
“It really is about the tone you set. You can talk until you’re blue in the face, but kids watch what you do every single day of your life. So your behaviour, that love and community and honesty is, I think, what makes everything feel safe for my kids,” said actress Drew Barrymore on The Ellen De Generes Show in 2017, talking about her own co-parenting experience with ex-husband Will Kopelman.