After more than three years of marriage, Avril Lavigne and her husband, Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley, are separating, according to a message posted late Thursday (September 17) on Lavigne’s MySpace page.
“Deryck and I have been together for six-and-a-half years. We have been friends since I was 17, started dating when I was 19, and married when I was 21. I am grateful for our time together, and I am grateful and blessed for our remaining friendship,” the message reads. “I admire Deryck and have a great amount of respect for him. He is the most amazing person I know and I love him with all my heart. Deryck and I are separating and moving forward on a positive note.”
Lavigne concluded the message by thanking her family, friends and fans for their support.
The message (which was titled “Moving forward on a positive note”) confirmed speculation that had run rampant in recent months that the couple’s marriage was on the rocks. Earlier on Thursday, Us Weekly ran a story that cited a source as saying Lavigne had “dumped” Whibley and forced him to move out of their Bel Air, California, mansion, adding that “divorce papers will be filed any day now.”
Lavigne and Whibley were married in July 2006 in a non-denominational ceremony held at a private estate in Montecito, California, and their partnership quickly extended into the field of music, as Whibley played on and produced parts of Lavigne’s last album, 2007′s The Best Damn Thing, and was reportedly working with her on the follow-up to that record.