Weeks after posting a message on social media revealing that her family was working through an “unexpected crisis,” Christian author Jen Hatmaker, a mother of five, has filed for divorce from her husband, Brandon.
Hatmaker, who’s been married to Brandon since 1993, filed for divorce in Hays County 22nd District Court in Texas on Aug. 21, but the filing doesn’t disclose the reason, according to The Roys Report.
Hatmaker, who made headlines in 2016 for affirming same-sex marriage, wrote after nearly three weeks of social media silence at the time: “I’ve been quiet. In short, we are deeply hurting in our little life. As I’ve written, there is a difference between secrecy marked by shame, and privacy marked by discretion, and we are in the second category.”
The author said she took a break “to help steer toward healing and wholeness.”
“Please know that everyone is safe, and all our kids are okay,” she continued. “Also know that our community and family has radically cared for us, and we are surrounded by love and support. Jesus loves us. We are not alone.”
More recently, she wrote on Instagram, “If you carefully and consistently build the right things into your life, into your soul, into your relationships, into your very character –
integrity, loyalty, trustworthiness, goodness, compassion, healthy community, honor, faithfulness, love, self-control, kindness – it will all hold when your life unravels. Every bit of it. Crisis doesn’t destroy it; it reveals it.
“What has sat gently and softly inside your heart will come roaring out like a lioness when called upon to save your very life. The faith you tended? Holds like the Rock of Gibraltar. The healthy relationships you nurtured will be your anchor. Your good character keeps you true to yourself, true to what is noble and right, even as the waves crash over your head.”
The filing for divorce comes two months after Hatmaker revealed that her daughter, Sydney, is lesbian. She said in a June 26 podcast, titled “A Moment of Pride,” that she was “glad.” She said it shouldn’t be seen as a coming out “announcement” for Sydney because their family had known about her sexuality for quite some time.
In the podcast, Hatmaker’s daughter disclosed that she had grappled with reconciling her sexuality and her spirituality for many years. She said the “nail in the coffin” happened after she googled various theological perspectives on homosexuality and saw an article that referenced her mother’s comments about “loving” the LGBT community, but not “affirming” the lifestyle.
Hatmaker said her “greatest regret” was speaking against homosexuality.
“I wouldn’t change one ounce of who she is. Not a molecule. Not a moment. The only thing I would change in our story, is I wish I could go back and shake myself to life sooner — well, well, well, before,” she said. “The truth is, every single church is just filled with gay kids and gay moms and dads and you know, it's just so irresponsible to break their hearts.”
Hatmaker and her daughter argued that love without affirmation is not enough.