Divorce at the Top

Aug 8, 2012 by

When the former governor of California and his wife recently announced their separation in a joint statement there was no mention of a specific cause for the separation. Arnold Schwarzenegger was widely quoted at the time as saying “We both love each other very much,” and the split at first looked like it might be temporary. Maria Shriver was less forthcoming and made no public statement, leaving the press to speculate that if even she had been unhappy in the marriage, she had made no moves until Arnold finished his term as governor.

Now a story in the Los Angeles Times has shed more light on the high-profile break-up and it looks like there might be more than just irreconcilable differences behind the split.
The Times article says Schwarzenegger has admitted paternity over a child he fathered more over ten years ago with a member of his house staff. Apparently he waited until his term as governor was over before telling his wife who responded by moving out of the family’s Brentwood mansion immediately after Schwarzenegger acknowledged the paternity. The larger the lifestyle, the larger the problems, and it seems infidelity and paternity outside the marriage can equal big problems for high-profile celebrities like California’s colorful ex-governor who recently announced he was going back to work on his movie career.

The identity of the household staffer remains unknown and the Times did not publish her name. The child’s identity is also unknown, but it is known that Schwarzenegger has provided financial support for both mother and child since the birth of the child. The Times reported that the staffer had worked for the ex-governor’s family for 20 years before she retired in January. The Times reported that she said had voluntarily left her position and left on good terms after receiving an undisclosed severance payment.

Schwarzenegger issued a formal apology statement to The Times that said, “After leaving the governor’s office I told my wife about this event, which occurred over a decade ago. I understand and deserve the feelings of anger and disappointment among my friends and family. There are no excuses and I take full responsibility for the hurt I have caused. I have apologized to Maria, my children and my family. I am truly sorry. I ask that the media respect my wife and children through this extremely difficult time. While I deserve your attention and criticism, my family does not.”

Shriver did not comment on the admission but she had sent an earlier Twitter message to her thousands of followers, which said “Thank you all for the kindness, support and compassion. I am humbled by the love. Thank you.”  This will definitely not be the last installment of Arnold in the news though, as the actor/governor has signed deals to make two more Terminator films and he is said to also be working on his memoirs. One can only wonder if his memoirs will shed more light on his behavior during his first campaign for governor in 2003 when more than a dozen women claimed that the Terminator had groped them. Now those claims are beginning to look a bit more accurate. Divorce experts and attorneys have long said that the larger the estate, the more complex the divorce will be, and the Shriver – Schwarzenegger divorce looks like it could be a real mess.


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