Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich are separating after nearly three years of marriage, the pair confirmed exclusively to PEOPLE via a statement.
“We have lovingly and carefully taken the time we have needed to arrive at our decision to separate,” they said in their joint statement. “We share an abundance of love and respect for one another and will continue to lead with our hearts from that place. We kindly request your compassion and respect for our privacy moving forward.”
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Hough and Laich’s split comes as the pair have been social distancing separately during the ongoing public health crisis, with Laich living in Idaho and Hough in Los Angeles.
“It’s over, it’s been over for a while, and it’s time to just call it what it is — and it is over,” one source said referring to the situation. “There is honestly no ill will. He loves her. She loves him. I can truly say they always will. But they both understand they are not meant to go through their lives as husband and wife to each other.”
According to the same source, Hough, who revealed last year that she is “not straight,” is a “deeply different person than she was when they got married.”
“She is proud of those differences and changes she’s made and she doesn’t want to go back,” the source said. “He is the man he is and he shouldn’t change a thing. But they shouldn’t spend the rest of their lives together — not as spouses, anyway.”
“They are both on the same page about that now,” the source added. “It took them a while to get here, but now they both understand that and they are hoping to move forward as deeply loving friends forever who will always be supportive and encouraging of one another.”
According to the source, the fact that the pair were “perfectly happy and fine being apart” during the health crisis made them realize that it was time to separate.
An insider close to Laich confirmed that the former couple are “separated and not together.”
“They haven’t seen each other for almost two months,” the insider said. “It’s been a sad situation, but they have both realized that their priorities are too different for their marriage to work out.”
According to the insider, Laich “very happy to be living away from L.A.,” while Hough loves living in the city.
“They are two people that still love each other, but have decided that it’s time to move on separately,” the insider said. “The split is friendly. They hope they can stay friends.”
A source who is close to the couple added: “This wasn’t a rash decision. They tried living apart and spending time apart, and also spending more time together to see what would be best. But their romantic relationship is over now. It’s really sad because there is a lot of love and respect between Brooks and Julianne, but they are both determined to remain friends.”
Hough and Laich announced their engagement in August 2015 following a year and a half of dating. The pair married in July 2017 in an outdoor ceremony outside of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
Hough and Laich’s separation comes after multiple sources told PEOPLE earlier this year that the duo had hit a rough patch in their marriage. Fans also began to speculate that their pair had split after they noticed Hough wasn’t wearing her wedding ring while co-hosting live on New Year’s Eve on NBC.
“She’s very independent and a free spirit, and that’s been tough for Brooks and their marriage,” a source said at the time.