Tom Brady and Gisele Bündchen have finalized their divorce, they announced on Friday, ending a 13-year marriage between two superstars who have risen to the heights of fashion and football respectively.
Brady and Bündchen posted statements on Instagram late Friday morning, each saying they had “amicably” made the decision.
“The decision to end a marriage is never easy, but we have separated and while of course it is difficult to go through something like this, I feel blessed for the time we have spent together and I always wish Tom the best,” Bündchen wrote.
Both said their priorities were their children and asked for confidentiality.
“We have come to this decision to end our marriage after careful consideration,” Brady wrote. “It is, of course, painful and difficult, as it is for many people who go through the same thing every day around the world.”
The divorce landed in the middle of Brady’s 23rd season in the NFL, and just months after the seven-time Super Bowl champion ended his short retirement. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback – who had long said he wanted to spend more time with Bündchen and his three children – announced his departure from the game in February, only to change his mind 40 days later.
“What more do you have to prove?” Bündchen told her husband on the sidelines after his record-breaking Super Bowl victory, as Brady himself recounted shortly after the win.
Although Brady initially said his retirement was a chance to focus his “time and energy on other things that need my attention”, part of his motivation to return was what he called “unfinished business”. with the Buccaneers. The team failed to reach the Super Bowl last season in its effort to repeat as champions.
Concerns over concussions and Brady’s health
Bündchen told “CBS This Morning” in 2017 that she was worried about her husband after he suffered a concussion the previous year. Brady’s team at the time, the New England Patriots, and his agent declined to respond to his comments at the time, and an NFL spokesperson said there was no no trace of head injury. Brady later said he preferred to keep his medical history private.
“I mean, we don’t talk about it,” Bündchen said during the interview. “But he has concussions. I don’t really think that’s a healthy thing for anyone to go through.”
More recently, she argued that the characterization in reports that she desperately wanted her husband to retire had sexist overtones.
“Obviously I have my concerns. It’s a very violent sport, and I have my kids and I wish it were more present,” the model told Elle magazine in September. “I’ve definitely had these conversations with him over and over. But at the end of the day, I think everyone has to make a decision that works for (them). He has to follow his joy, too.”
Bündchen and Brady were introduced by a mutual friend and married – twice – just over two years later. They said their first “I do” in early 2009 at a Catholic church in Santa Monica, California, in front of family and close friends, followed by an equally small second wedding at her home in Costa Rica nearly two months away. later.
Their son Benjamin was born later that year, followed by a daughter, Vivian, in 2012. Brady also has a 15-year-old son, Jack Moynahan, from a previous relationship with actor Bridget Moynahan.
A career celebrated, then focused on family and the environment
Bündchen, who was discovered by a model scout aged 13 in Brazil, secured her place among the industry’s highest-paid models in the 2000s and became a tabloid staple, fueled by a relationship with Leonardo DiCaprio. As well as walking the catwalks of top designers, appearing in campaigns for high-street and high-fashion brands, she’s signed as a Victoria’s Secret Angel and has had small film roles, including in “The devil wears Prada”.
She took a step back from modeling in 2015, giving up catwalk work and sticking to a few ad campaigns and magazine covers a year. She made a big exception, wearing a sparkly dress and a huge smile in 2016 as she ran across a 400ft (120m) track at the Rio Olympics while fellow Brazilian Daniel Jobim performed ‘The Girl From Ipanema “.
Since scaling back on her modeling commitments, she has devoted herself to environmental activism, particularly regarding the conservation of the Amazon rainforest, and business ventures such as eco-friendly skincare. environment and a lingerie line. She has also spoken out on mental health, revealing debilitating panic attacks which she says made her consider suicide and criticizing unrealistic beauty standards.
First and foremost, Bündchen told Elle, her top priority was her family.
“I did my part, which was to be there for (Tom). I moved to Boston and focused on creating a cocoon and a loving environment for my children to grow up and be there to support him and his dreams,” she says. “To see my children succeed and become the beautiful little humans that they are, to see him succeed and thrive in his career, it makes me happy. At this point in my life, I feel like I’ve done a good job on that.”
After years in Boston – where Brady played for the Patriots – and then again in Tampa with him in 2020, she said she has her own plans: “I have a huge list of things that I have to do, that I want to do. At 42, I feel more connected with my purpose.”
Brady turned 45 in August when he left the Buccaneers for 11 days for unspecified personal reasons. The team backed the furlough, calling it a pre-planned break agreed upon before the start of training camp in July.
A three-time NFL MVP and the league’s all-time leader in assists and touchdowns, Brady signed a 10-year contract worth $375 million to become the senior football analyst for Fox. Sports once he hangs up his cleats. When will still be uncertain – while Brady had expressed an interest in extending his playing career beyond his 40s if he remained healthy, his ex-wife had a different idea in 2017.
“That kind of aggression all the time, it can’t be healthy for you,” she said during the CBS interview. “I foresee him being healthy and doing a lot of fun things when we’re around 100, hopefully.”
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