When celebrities get divorced, they have to deal with the drama of a separation and the added stress of finding a delicate way to break the news to their fans. But, in most cases, both parties are at least privy to the divorce news before fans find out.
That wasn't true for author Neil Gaiman when his wife of nine years revealed that their marriage was over.
His wife, singer Amanda Palmer, announced that she was separated from Neil Gaiman to her Patreon group on May 3. While the news was disappointing to her fans, it was also a surprise to Neil himself.
Read on to find out what Amanda originally said to her group, and how Neil later noted that he wasn't aware that his marriage was over. Plus, find out about Amanda's past involvement in several controversies.
What did Amanda Palmer say about Neil Gaiman on her Patreon?
The Dresden Dolls singer got engaged to Neil in 2010, and they officially married the following year. In 2015, Amanda gave birth to their only child together, son Anthony "Ash" Gaiman in 2015.
Amanda announced that her marriage to Neil had ended to her Patreon group (Patreon is a membership platform public figures use to give their fans insider information and extra content) on May 3.
"Since people are getting confused and asking and my phone and inbox is blowing up with 'where's Neil'? a few times a minute.... I can only gather that he's finally told the internet that he's left New Zealand, and I thought I would come here with a short note. I just posted this to social media," Amanda began in her post.
She went on to explain that Neil had moved away from New Zealand, where the family was based, to live in the U.K.
She added a screenshot of a tweet she wrote earlier that day, which reads "To everyone sending me messages of support, rage & condolences — thank you. I've got the kid full time in lockdown & wish I could spend time answering. Neil moved to the UK, my heart has been broken, and I am really struggling. Your love & support means a lot to me. Thank you."
In the rest of her Patreon post, Amanda said that their split was not because they had been spending too much time together during the coronavirus lockdown.
"Other things came to light after we got here to New Zealand," Amanda wrote. She then said that she would not be explaining what these things were because she wanted "to keep little ash (who will not always be little) protected, the details aren't for the public."
In the rest of her statement, she acknowledged that she had love for Neil, and that she had been deeply struggling with the fallout from their split.
After Amanda's news went viral, Neil tweeted about the divorce. He hinted that Amanda hadn't exactly given him a heads up about revealing their personal news to the world.
"I see Amanda Palmer has told people that we (like much of the world) are going through rocky times right now. It is true, we are. It's really hard, and I'd like to request privacy (as I'm not going to be talking about it publicly) and kindness, for us and for Ash," he tweeted on May 4.
Amanda has since tweeted about feeling supported by her fans, and she's thanked them for their understanding. Like he said in his original tweet, Neil has not elaborated further on the divorce.
I see @amandapalmer has told people that we (like much of the world) are going through rocky times right now. It is true, we are. It's really hard, and I'd like to request privacy (as I'm not going to be talking about it publicly) and kindness, for us and for Ash.— Neil Gaiman (@neilhimself) May 4, 2020
Is Amanda Palmer racist?
Throughout her career, whether it was during her time with The Dresden Dolls or in her solo ventures, Amanda has been known for her politically charged lyrics and song titles. As an artist, she's one of the more polarizing figures because of her use of crowdsourcing to fund her ventures.
In November of 2019, Medium writer Grace Lapointe wrote about Amanda's insensitive and triggering lyrics.
While the author found a plethora of lyrics that she believed were problematic, she alleged that Amanda's songs "Backstabber" and "Jeep Song" had lyrics that were especially racist in nature.
She noted that "Jeep Song" featured a sentiment that targeted Native American groups, while "Backstabber" included lyrics about Japanese people.
Compilation videos of Amanda using racial slurs while singing have also circulated on the internet for several years. It does not appear as if she has publicly apologized for using them or addressed the existence of the videos.
Did Amanda Palmer fake a suicide? (Trigger warning).
After a 2009 performance at the Corner Hotel in Australia, Amanda did a Q&A with her fans. When one fan asked her about a voice that could be heard in between the tracks on Who Killed Amanda Palmer? the singer explained that it was her ex-boyfriend, Matt.
"I was dating this guy named Matt, who I was really in love with in college," she said during the Q&A. "It turned out after I had been dating him for a couple of months that he was a heroin addict."
After he got clean, she asked him to be honest with her if he was ever tempted to do drugs again.
"I can't handle dishonesty at all in my relationships," she said.
Before a party one night, she recalled Matt telling her that he was planning on using drugs again. Amanda said that she staged a scene in her dorm room to make it look like she had harmed herself.
While many of the concertgoers laughed at her story while she was telling it, many have since questioned the singer for that story.