Speculation around Louise and Jamie Redknapp’s marriage has been rife for months and, with Jamie still not wearing his wedding ring, it looked as though things may have been over for good.
Although their relationship status is still murky, Woman can exclusively reveal that the couple – who have been married for nearly 20 years – will spend Christmas together.
A source close to the pair has revealed that Louise and Jamie are determined to make this festive period as normal as possible, even if it is their last together.
‘Louise misses what she had – there’s no denying that. She wants her boys to experience at least one final family Christmas before she and Jamie make a decision over their marriage,’ our source says.
The couple hit hard times when Louise stepped back into the public eye after Strictly, with her saying, ‘[The] experience made me realise how much I love being on stage, and you learn to become fearless.’
Louise, 43, and Jamie, 44, have been living separate lives for nearly six months as she admitted she’d lost herself during her marriage.
Despite talks of filing for divorce, it seems like time away has made the pair think about what is right for everyone, and has given them the space they needed.
‘Louise has said sorry to Jamie a lot,’ our insider says. ‘She knows how difficult it has been for him to deal with her finding herself again. But mostly she’s apologised because she sees how much he’s been hurt, and she’s revealed how much she loves him, whether they eventually work it out or not.’
While they were both desperate to have their family united again, deep down she and Jamie know things can never really be the same again. ‘She misses Jamie enormously, but she is also thrilled with her new life. It’s a terrible situation with only one outcome,’ our insider reveals.
Louise previously admitted that her marriage had hit a rocky patch, saying she felt like she’d become a ‘Stepford wife’.
Since competing in Strictly in 2016, Louise has relaunched her career by taking to the stage in hit show Cabaret and returning to her singing career with a UK tour.
‘There’s no denying Louise is lonely – she misses being a wife and full-time mum, but she wants to keep her new confidence, independence and, most of all, her career,’ our source continues.
Our insider adds that Jamie will not compromise on having what he sees as a part-time wife, adding that he ‘is ready for changes and accepts the relationship can’t go back to what it was, and they can’t get away from how hurt and angry he is as well. It’s complicated.’
Understandably, former professional footballer Jamie is bound to be devastated by the state of his marriage, especially with Louise having lived outside of the marital home for six months.
However, the couple – who have two children, Charley, 13, and Beau, nine – are said to be ready to try and make their marriage work, but things need to change.
Working on any marriage is a challenge, but the public scrutiny is certain to add extra strain, especially with Louise openly speaking about their relationship.
The singer has also admitted her family didn’t get her desire to pursue her career. ‘That is when it hit the fan,’ she said. ‘No one could understand why it was so desperately important to me.’
Our source adds that Jamie is struggling to come to terms with how his marriage has crumbled, saying, ‘It’s hard for him – he feels he’s been a devoted husband and never pushed her to be a “Stepford wife”, that it was her choice.’
Louise has always stressed that her and Jamie’s number-one priority is their children. Although it will take time and commitment to get their relationship back on track (as friends or as husband and wife), they plan to support each other.
‘Whatever happens, Louise and Jamie know they need to be supportive of each other’s work and public profile, instead of belittling it or being plain disinterested,’ says our source. ‘Their boys are old enough to know what’s going on, and neither Jamie or Louise want them to see their parents involved in public slanging matches.
‘It’s clear the couple are keen to put the family first, so let’s hope 2018 will be the new beginning Louise and Jamie so desperately need.’