Since Julianne Hough’s marriage to Brooks Laich started to crumble, she has been getting by with a little help from her friends.
“She had been spending a lot of time with Ben Barnes and has been leaning on him,” a source tells Us Weekly exclusively of the actor, 38, with whom the Dancing With the Stars alum, 31, was first spotted in April ahead of her split from the NHL alum, 37. “She told Brooks it was nothing, but it’s not.”
A month and a half after Hough and Barnes were photographed walking around Los Angeles, she and Laich announced that they had decided to end their two-year marriage.
“We have lovingly and carefully taken the time we have needed to arrive at our decision to separate,” the estranged couple, who married in July 2017, said in a joint statement on May 29. “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.”
Since then, the Grease Live! star has left L.A. and “won’t answer anyone’s calls or texts, including her closest friends,” according to the source.
Laich, for his part, has stayed in touch with his brother-in-law, Derek Hough. On Tuesday, June 23, they exercised with the World of Dance judge’s girlfriend, Hayley Erbert, and two other friends. Derek documented “Brooks’ birthday blast workout” on his Instagram Stories.
Us broke the news in January that Julianne and Laich were having issues in their marriage, but he had hoped they could work things out instead of going their separate ways.
“Her actions are what caused her divorce with Brooks,” a source told Us on Thursday, June 25. “Brooks did not want a divorce, but he felt pushed toward it because of how Julianne was behaving.”
Another insider previously revealed that the professional dancer, who debuted brunette hair earlier this month, is “not doing great” after her breakup with the former hockey pro.
Julianne and Laich were first linked in 2014 after being introduced by her Curve costar Teddy Sears.
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