PEOPLE confirmed exclusively this weekend that Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth “have agreed to separate”. Here’s the statement from Miley’s rep:

“Liam and Miley have agreed to separate at this time,” a rep for Cyrus tells PEOPLE in a statement. “Ever-evolving, changing as partners and individuals, they have decided this is what’s best while they both focus on themselves and careers. They still remain dedicated parents to all of their animals they share while lovingly taking this time apart. Please respect their process and privacy.”

Interesting that they haven’t yet used the word “divorce”. Is that a deliberate decision? To leave the door open? 

This came after Miley was photographed kissing Kaitlynn Carter, Brody Jenner’s ex, while on holiday in Italy (you can see those photos here) and after Miley described her marriage in an interview with ELLE in their recent August 2019 issue:

I think it’s very confusing to people that I’m married. But my relationship is unique. And I don’t know that I would ever publicly allow people in there because it’s so complex, and modern, and new that I don’t think we’re in a place where people would get it. I mean, do people really think that I’m at home in a f-cking apron cooking dinner? I’m in a hetero relationship, but I still am very sexually attracted to women. People become vegetarian for health reasons, but bacon is still f-cking good, and I know that. I made a partner decision. This is the person I feel has my back the most. I definitely don’t fit into a stereotypical wife role. I don’t even like that word.

Looking back at this quote in hindsight, was Miley saying that their marriage is/was open? Are women the bacon? If so, does that mean Liam is Beyond Meat? I tried a Beyond Meat burger recently. I mean… it’s OK. But it doesn’t take like meat. It takes like things that are trying to be meat, which is not the same. 

Miley’s been posting a lot on Instagram since the announcement. Here’s the caption that most people are trying to read into:


A post shared by Miley Cyrus (@mileycyrus) on

She’s 26 years old. She and Liam have been on and off for a decade. It was young when it started, they’re still young now. And what few people seem to remember is WHEN they got married to begin with: last November, Miley and Liam lost their home to the California fires. 


A post shared by Liam Hemsworth (@liamhemsworth) on

They got married just a month later, during what was obviously a really intense, really emotional, really stressful time in their lives. When decisions are made in that frame of mind, they’re often spontaneous and desperate. Of course they’d feel desperate, desperate to hold on to anything solid, desperate to protect what they love, desperate to wrap themselves in each other, in whatever life that remained, because in that disaster, they lost so much. With decisions made after that kind of trauma, with that kind of intensity, the test is time and what happens when heightened emotional levels come back to their usual setting. 

Seven months later, perhaps we’re finding out. 

As for whatever’s happening between Miley and Kaitlynn, I’d rather think about the narrative around Miley and Liam when they first got back together. I wrote about this at the time, in 2016, about how all the stories were about how happy Miley was to reconcile with Liam. Happy and grateful. That he was the one taking her back after she made changes to “earn” him back, after a wild and raunchy couple of years. It was never about how they had to grow apart and each experience other and new things. It was always about how Miley was the one who almost had to be… like…re-domesticated– an uncomfortable storyline to buy into and the storyline that, I’m sure, is going to be revived in reverse. Miley Cyrus, “Can’t Be Tamed”.