Apparently the honeymoon is over.
After a highly publicized romance, a reality-series marriage and eventually tabloid rumors of strife, Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey officially announced their split on Wednesday to Us Weekly magazine.
“After three years of marriage, and careful thought and consideration, we have decided to part ways,” the couple said in a joint statement released to the magazine. “This is the mutual decision of two people with an enormous amount of respect and admiration for each other. We hope that you respect our privacy during this difficult time.”
Rumors about tension between the two had grown louder and louder in recent months. Us Weekly even reported that the couple had quietly split just over one month ago. Officially, however, spokespeople for the two flatly denied a split was in the cards.
Simpson and Lachey were married in fall 2002. Their starry-eyed love and down-home personas (she the bumbling but lovable blonde, he the Rust-Belt everyman looking for ways to keep her spending in check) made the reality show chronicling their first days of marriage, “Newlyweds,” a breakout hit for MTV. Simpson was able to parlay that success into renewed interest in her music career, and also into a now-budding stint in Hollywood.