“Friends, I’ve always tried my best to share my life with you in a real and vulnerable way, while also protecting layers of my personal life as they unfold,” the “Hole in the Bottle” songstress, 28, wrote via her Instagram Story on Monday, August 29. “This is now public record so I wanted you to hear from me directly that I am going through a divorce.”
Ballerini continued: “This deeply difficult decision is the result of a journey of love, growth, and effort that ultimately has come to an end. It’s hard to find the words here … but I feel extremely grateful for the years of marriage to Morgan and hopeful for the next seasons. With very active schedules coming up, please be mindful that we are both fragile, actively healing, and showing up the best we can.”
The songwriter filed for divorce on Friday, August 26, and listed the same day as the pair’s date of separation, according to court documents obtained by Us Weekly. She cited “irreconcilable differences” as the cause of the split.
Evans, 37, broke his silence on Monday afternoon. “I am very sad to confirm that after almost 5 years of marriage, Kelsea and I are parting ways,” he wrote via his Instagram Story. “I wish it were otherwise but sadly it is not.”
The “Love Me Like You Mean It” singer began dating Evans in March 2016. Less than one year later, the Australia native popped the question on Christmas Day. “Loving him has been the greatest gift of my life. And now I get to do it for life,” Ballerini gushed via Instagram while announcing her engagement.
The musicians exchanged vows in Mexico in December 2017. Nearly one year later, Evan revealed that his then-wife inspired much of the music on his album Things That We Drink To.
“It’s my story. It’s leaving behind everything and everyone you know to chase down a Country Music dream on the other side of the world. It’s the excitement of the unknown, its the fun, it’s the loneliness & it’s the struggle,” he explained in a social media post in October 2018. “It’s losing someone and finding the strength to keep your head up and make them proud. It’s meeting a girl, falling hopelessly, and marrying the love of your life.”
Evans and Ballerini were each other’s biggest cheerleaders over the years as they both rose to country superstardom. When the “Half of My Hometown” singer was honored at the 2021 CMT Artists of the Year ceremony, Evans attended solo — but he raved over the Tennessee native on the red carpet.
“There’s this pretty girl named Kelsea that I think is probably gonna be the highlight of the night,” he teased while speaking exclusively with Us Weekly at the event.
The “Love Is Real” artist went on to admit that there “was definitely a shift” in the duo’s romance during the coronavirus pandemic. “You know, I think we saw more of each other in the last year and a half than we probably would have in the next 10 years had we kept going the same way,” he told Us. “So we learned a lot about each other, had a lot of fun. We learned the apartment we were living in was probably too small to be there every rather than two or three days a week. We moved into a house, the dog has a backyard now. So there’s been a lot of positives to come out of it.”
Just one month before she announced their breakup, Ballerini explained that she and Evans prefer not to bring their work home with them. “We don’t [write together],” she said on Jimmy Kimmel Live! in July. “You know, because we do the same thing all the time so we already bring it home. Imagine, like, them coming home and you’re, like, ‘Hey, like this hook? You want to write it?’ It’s just too much.”
She added at the time: “We both show each other everything. We’re pretty brutal. So I can only show him something if I’m like, ‘I know I love this, so even if he thinks it sucks, I’m still going to hang my hat on it.’ But I think you have to have that with anyone in your inner circle. You need that brutal honesty to you know, to know if it’s good or not.”