Bill & Melinda Gates are divorcing after 27 years of marriage & three kids

U.S. KIRKLAND BILL AND MELINDA GATES ANNUAL LETTER

Bill and Melinda Gates are getting divorced! This news has stunned me! While Bill and Melinda keep their lives and family very private, whenever I see them interviewed together, they always seem like such a good pair. He’s the nerd with a calculator for a heart. She’s more emotionally available, compassionate and real, but she’s smart as hell too and she could keep up with him. They’ve been married for 27 years and if we find out that this is some kind of convoluted scheme involving the National Enquirer and a Botoxed side piece, I will bang my head against the wall. Bill and Melinda’s split doesn’t seem to be as messy as Jeff and Mackenzie Bezos, but who knows.

Bill Gates, co-founder and former CEO of Microsoft, said in a tweet on Monday that he and his wife, Melinda Gates, will be splitting up after 27 years. Financial details are not yet clear. Bill Gates owns 1.37% of Microsoft’s outstanding shares, which are worth more than $26 billion, according to FactSet. The couple were creators, along with Warren Buffett, of the Giving Pledge, which involves giving away more than half of their wealth.

Last year Bill Gates stepped down from Microsoft’s board as the coronavirus became a force around the world. He began spending more time on the nonprofit Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation alongside Melinda Gates. The two are co-chairs and trustees of the foundation, which launched in 2000. At one point the couple decided to move $20 billion worth of Microsoft stock to the foundation as they sought to increase their commitment to philanthropy, Bill Gates wrote in a 2019 blog post. Today the foundation has over $51 billion in assets, according to a tax filing.

Bill and Melinda Gates met at Microsoft. She had been a marketing manager at the software company. The two got married in Hawaii in 1994 after Bill Gates had weighed the pros and cons on a blackboard.

The announcement comes two years after Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, said he and his wife, MacKenzie, were getting divorced. Bill Gates and Jeff Bezos are among the world’s richest people, and Amazon and Microsoft compete in the cloud computing business.

[From CNBC]

Right now, the vibe I’m getting is not “he cheated and/or has a jumpoff,” which was immediately clear about Jeff Bezos. The Gates split has the feel of… political differences plus some Empty Nest Syndrome? Their kids are all grown up and the youngest (Phoebe) is off to college and out of the house. And maybe without those buffers, they just got sick of each other. Plus, the pandemic. This could totally be a Pandemic Breakup.

Melinda will continue working on their massive foundation, which deals so much with public health issues, vaccination programs and poverty. TMZ obtained the divorce filing – Melinda filed, and they’ve apparently been separated for some length of time and there was a separate separation contract. The Gateses have no prenup, but as of yet, Melinda is not seeking spousal support.

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Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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183 Responses to “Bill & Melinda Gates are divorcing after 27 years of marriage & three kids”

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  1. Becks1 says:

    This definitely has a different feel to it than the Bezos. This just feels like….they are both in a different place than they were 27 years ago and are ready to move on in different ways. I guess time will tell though.

    • Eleonor says:

      Yes.
      When Bezos divorced we all knew he had a side piece, and it was messy.
      This feels a bit sad to me.

    • minx says:

      Honestly, I’m amazed when anyone stays married for a long time, including myself. We will be married 43 years this June…sometimes I just can’t believe it lol.

    • minx says:

      Thanks Kitten!

    • Lisa says:

      Honestly, many people I know and love are in marriages where their plan is “we will stay together until the kids grow up” which basically means they are unhappy, hate each other, but they are waiting until the kids head out the house before they tell each other fuck you. My siblings are both in this kind of relationship and many others are too. It is what it is, a compromise.

  2. Snuffles says:

    I hope she gets half of their money and she does the same as Mackenzie Bezos and starts giving the bulk of her fortune away to good causes, schools and scholarships. Or pays to vaccinate the poorest in the world. I’d like to think Bill being so selfish about sharing the vaccination formula was the final straw for her.

    • Ainsley7 says:

      The Gates’ were the ones who started the giving pledge that Mackenzie Bezos signed onto. So, she has already started and will continue to give money away to good causes.

      • Snuffles says:

        Maybe that was more Melinda’s idea than Bill’s.

      • Crows says:

        It was Melinda’s plan. She was the one who did the giving

      • Crows says:

        They’re also behind the massive processed food vegan push. Vegan is great! Mark my words. But these people supporting processed food made by huge companies. Not my natural food. Honestly, I don’t trust them

      • Rainbow says:

        @Crows, non-vegan fast food plays a massive part in destroying the planet. I wouldn’t eat Impossible, Beyond, etc., 2 times a week (or more), even if I were a fast-foodie. It IS, as you point out, highly processed. (I would make my own seitan / tofu / old school veggie burgers). But given the volumes of fast food we collectively consume, I’d say vegan burgers are a step in the right direction. Not to mention the animal protection / compassion aspects. No more clearing the Amazon and other natural treasures to plant GMO soy and feed poor cows to make burgers, please. The business magazines (Bloomberg, etc., which has good researchers) are all confirming vegan fast food could literally change the world in that sense – really help save the environment. And a lot of people can’t even tell the difference between Impossible and a traditional meat burger.

        On Bill, I don’t like billionaires dictating health/food/farming/etc policies. They’re not elected officials. It’s a sinister exercise of power and should be carefully regulated by local governments, in whatever countries he’s operating in.

    • Chaine says:

      I didn’t really know about the vaccination patent issue until this divorce announcement and reading the speculation about it. Gates really has done a good job branding himself as some kind of vaccine savior while enforcing vaccine apartheid.

      • Moe says:

        I read on the ny Times that Bill owns the most farmland in America. Their foundation has 50 billion dollars. Does anyone else find this scary? I think its great they are giving away so much money to good causes but its an awful lot of power in the hands of two private individuals. What if their foundation eventually got in the hands if someone more nefarious?

    • Crows says:

      Melinda was behind the giving. Apparently no pre nup. No worry there

    • chanalana says:

      I wonder if that was what did it as well, his stance on IP is pretty reprehensible, and hard to justify in a pandemic with constant virus mutations. Maybe she saw that too.

      Or maybe this divorce has been coming for a while. He’s been getting more bad press lately – not a lot by normal standards, but a lot for someone who the press is normally pretty fawning over. It’s heartening to see that people are more critical about his motivations and practices.

  3. Cecilia says:

    “ The two got married in Hawaii in 1994 after Bill Gates had weighed the pros and cons on a blackboard”

    Well that sounds romantic😂

    Nonetheless 27 years is a long time. Maybe when the pandemic started and everything was locked down they discovered that they had grown apart. Wouldn’t be weird. I’m not married but i can imagine that after some years you sort of are just used to each other and kind of move with the motions. If everything then stands still for a while and you have the time to really think about things you can find out that maybe things aren’t perfect and that there’s something missing.

    • Crows says:

      I know heaps of people who separated after 25 years. No surprise youngest is 18. That’s the key often. People stay together till youngest finishes school

  4. Plums says:

    was reading an interesting twitter thread about how this announcement and the tone of it feels specifically designed to preemptively allay fears about stock prices and foundation funding, and while that’s a good thing, it’s also insane that a couple’s divorce can have that level of effect on the global economy and billionaires should not exist for this reason among others.

    • Ann says:

      That is an interesting point. I didn’t consider the announcement as a business thing at all; this is just something rich and famous people do. A billionaire’s divorce is something of concern to the global economy and that is super f’ing not OK. No more billionaires. This is beyond ridiculous. Tax the rich.

    • Gah says:

      You’re right I think about the impact this personal announcement has had on the global economy. Stocks dumped today. Amazon is down like 90 pts and crypto is down too.

      I suppose this is inevitable in a post technological revolution world.

      But also: gossip matters!

    • liz says:

      Between the Bezos divorce and the Gates divorce we are talking about $400 BILLION. That’s more than the annual budget of a lot of nations. That’s insane to have that much wealth concentrated in the hands of four people.

  5. Hell Nah! says:

    I’m sorry to hear this and wish them both well.

    • Bettyrose says:

      Same. I don’t know why I should care but this is sad. Also I hate to see the comparison to Bezos. Gates is a rare genius and a true philanthropist. He also warned us circa 2016 that an air borne pandemic was likely the next big threat to humanity. He’s not some playboy were gonna see out on the party scene now.

      • SomeChick says:

        he has worked to shut down open sharing of how to make the vaccines, prioritizing huge profits for big pharma over saving lives in poorer countries. he may be more of a philanthropist than Bezos but that’s not saying much. people are dying because of his capitalism above all philosophy.

        read all about it here:

        https://newrepublic.com/article/162000/bill-gates-impeded-global-access-covid-vaccines

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ Some Chick, thank you for the article. This article has certainly placed Gates as the an abhorrent human being as he should be considered given the actions of intellectual property. It’s sickening that Gates has done this, all the while people are dying. No wonder Melinda became disillusioned with him.

      • Christine says:

        Yes, thank you for the link. I was woefully misinformed!

      • bettyrose says:

        Yes, somechick, thank you for sharing. I didn’t know this either. I’m highlighting this particular sentence from the article to show that if we’ve been fooled, we weren’t alone. Clearly a massive decades long PR effort has given us the impression he was philanthropic outside the realm of first-world computer sales: “carried the enormous weight of Gates’s reputation as a wise, beneficent, and prophetic leader. “

  6. Alexandria says:

    So here we are. Angelina, Kim K, J Lo are single. Brad Pitt , A Rod and Kanye are single. Hmmm…

    • Jezz says:

      Angie and Bill would be great! But can you imagine someone smart like Mack or Mel with someone as flighty as Kanye or Brad?!? Hahajja

      • Alexandria says:

        Lol Jezz, I really hope not because Bill seems like he’s missing a sensitivity chip. I’ve always thought Melinda was an anchor and good for his image. I’d pay to see Brad Pitt combust if they went on a few dates though hahahah

      • Chaine says:

        I’d pay to see Bill Gates on a date with Kim Kardashian.

    • Crows says:

      Angie and Bill? Gosh. Definitely not. He’s on the spectrum. That’s not Ange

    • Elle says:

      Angelina and Kanye would be interesting – they’re both Geminis!

  7. LillyfromLillooet says:

    I noticed that she’s using her maiden name again in her Insta profile. I can’t wait to read the rest of the comments here. BGates has always had a rep for being socially obtuse. He’s seen as a Great Man now, but the way he killed competition in Microsoft’s early days was heartless–he broke a lot of people and destroyed other companies. I remember the stories and I’ve seen this evolution to idealism with side eye.

    My money says Melinda just got worn down by a guy who isn’t capable of emotional deepening. He obviously appreciates her and she seems like a feeling person who tried hard for a long time. And it’s a mistake to see 27 years and 3 kids and all they’ve done as anything but a resounding success.

    • SarahCS says:

      This was largely my reaction, I get how they worked together and achieved so much and I can also see how at this point in their lives (kids now gone) she could be ready to move on either to just have herself to take care of and maybe have a more emotionally based relationship with someone else.

      I’ve read about half her book and she really cares deeply and appreciates what she can do thanks to the position they’re in. I can see her moving away from his cold logic at a personal level.

    • Sue Denim says:

      I heard a story from insiders, from the early days of the foundation, that advisors struggled to help BG see beyond marketing opportunities (like giving things away to build long term markets for his products) and understand real philanthropy. They said it was his wife and his father who really got it. To his credit, he had strong smart compassionate people around him, and it sounds like he listened and grew. But maybe it was part of the issue? Who knows…

      Also, it’s great that these billionaires are doing great things, but it’s not a democracy…we need to change tax policies…and anti-trust laws.

      • Lizzie says:

        The Netflix show about him show those smart compassionate people in his life helped him become comfortable in society rather than the teen who wanted to stay in his bedroom. He was lucky to have his family and he let them give him guidance.

      • Gaah says:

        I believe his late mother was very big into philanthropy too. Too bad it had to learned behaviour from him rather than natural instinct

    • Snuffles says:

      My general impression of these tech moguls like Gates, Jobs, Zuckerberg is that as wildly intelligent as they are, they aren’t very high on emotional intelligence. In fact, they are pretty stunted.

      • Chaine says:

        That’s how a lot of tech guys are. Basically all of my woman friends in Silicon Valley who have hit their 50s are getting divorced since the pandemic because enforced togetherness has caused them to finally accept that their husbands are never not going to be emotionless bots.

      • Diana says:

        Agree with everyone on this thread. I think Bill, though a genius, is probably self absorbed, emotionally cold and empathy is likely a big struggle for him. I see Melinda wanting someone emotionally available and loving (we all want this) and he just wasn’t capable of fulfilling those needs. This is so sad 😔

      • Tanya says:

        Honestly, I think it’s hard to not be self-centered and egotistical when you’re that rich. I’ve seen friends hit the startup lottery and gradually become less empathetic, more entitled, etc. You have to work really hard to stay grounded when you only really interact with people you’re paying or who want something from you.

      • Bananapanda says:

        I think the difference is that Bill Gates had a stable family and his father was a lawyer and was philanthropist. Microsoft has a much bigger culture of philanthropy compared to Apple.

        Melinda Gates and Mackenzie Scott are already running two of the biggest foundations or funds and have the power to really (continue to) impact world policy.

    • Soupie says:

      I remember reading that Bill Gates is on the autism spectrum. There were a lot of details in the article but it was a while back so I don’t remember them.

      On another note I dated an IT guy back in the late seventies in Silicon Valley. He worked for Memorex. Later Oracle. I only went to an office party (Memorex) once. That was enough. I found the people very strange and very difficult to talk to. I’m an artistic musical type so we definitely did not fit together well.

      • Mcmmom says:

        Yeah, my impression is that he’s on the spectrum and he’s not easy to live with. She’s said they have had issues in the past. My sense is that she’s probably just sick of it. Their kids are out of the house, they have both achieved an amazing amount and she’s probably tired of the emotional heavy lifting.

      • tatannelise says:

        The ableism here is horrid.

      • Ines says:

        @soupie WTF with this comment? I used to play the piano and violin, had purple hair and used to be an avid festival goer (getting on a bit now) and would also consider myself an “artistic, musical type” and actually I work for Microsoft. My husband is a software developer whom I met in a previous role. He is a bit shy, but certainly not strange or difficult to talk to. I work with a lot of compassionate, smart, creative thinkers.
        The generalizations in this thread are pretty offensive.

      • Mcmmom says:

        Yikes – sorry, yes, I can see how my comments were ableist. Let me try this again.

        Melinda has talked about their marriage and the stressors in the past. She talked about their annual letter and how she wanted to co-write it and he refused at first, they both got mad, and she said the marriage almost ended then. The next year, he let her write part of it. The third year, it was finally a joint effort. He’s obviously brilliant (as is she), but I don’t know if what makes you the kind of person who truly changes the course of human history makes you an easy spouse or easy to live with.

      • Soupie says:

        @Ines
        My comments are based on my experiences in 1978-1979 Silicon Valley when the world was a VERY different place. Not all geeks are non-artists/musicians, that’s obvious! My experience, however limited, was what I stated. I stand by my own experience. I’m not expecting you to agree with me. I’m glad that you, your husband and others are more well-rounded. A lot of geeks back then were extremely young, insecure and under a lot of pressure, as are many today. However, you all have the benefit of recent culture and technology, and that’s the difference. Please be sure to tell your colleagues about this response ;)

    • Crows says:

      She’s used French gates forever

    • FHMom says:

      I lived in Seattle in the 90’s before he married and was being heralded as a genius. IIRC, he was supposed to be very, very socially awkward. I think he was described as being autistic level awkward or something like that by people who had met and worked for him. I met someone who knew him as a kid and described him as shy, nerdy and a little strange. I remember thinking that nobody would want to be associated with him if it weren’t for his wealth.

      • Ersatz says:

        Being “autistic level awkward” means nothing. Autism is a spectrum and presents differently in everyone. And using awkward to describe it is never okay. As Tatannelise said : “the ableism here is horrid”. It would be nice if people whose conception of autism comes entirely from Rain Man would keep their uneducated opinions to themselves. A lot of the comments here are very offensive.

    • Dilettante says:

      Cosign

      • Emm says:

        Agreed.

      • Irish Eyes says:

        I cosign in the name of my wonderful autistic spectrum son, who struggles daily to battle such opinions. He is a loving, funny, clever young man, who is somewhat inhibited in his social interactions, especially with new people in his life. When are we ever going to learn to accept each other as we are, and stop rushing to pin a label on those around us?

      • Lotta says:

        Me too. My son has the diagnose aspergers. He is very smart and empathetic, but sometimes he needs help in how to show his emotions.

  8. OriginalLala says:

    Divorce is never easy and I wish them well,… billionaires shouldn’t exist.

  9. Sofia says:

    Well I didn’t have this on my 2021 bingo. Jokes aside, I wonder what was the final straw? 27 years is a long time. With their money and resources as well as the brand they’ve got together, I would have just stayed married in name only and just live separate lives.

    • tolly says:

      Their youngest child just moved out, which is a logical endpoint for some couples who haven’t been happy. Maybe she wants to build a career that isn’t tethered to his name.

    • salmonpuff says:

      This is what I said to my husband. With that kind of money, why bother getting divorced? They could keep their lives and never have to see each other. He suspects that’s what they’ve been doing for a while and now one wants to move on publicly, either with a new romance or a separate career that would require separate financial dealings.

      • Sofia says:

        I agree with your husband lol. I can see one of them (Melinda is my bet) having really fallen in love with someone and wants to move on with them, hence why a legal ending is necessary. Divorce is messy no matter what (especially with a high profile couple like them) and with their money, I don’t see why they couldn’t have lived separate lives unless one or both really wants to move on with someone else.

      • TaraBest says:

        @Salmonpuff, my boyfriend said the same thing as your husband. The fact that their divorce announcement can have global financial implications makes me think that they just really can’t stand to stay married, for whatever reason. Divorce is hard for everyone, but going through it on such a global scale would be terrifying. They really must feel like it’s the only thing that can be done.

  10. Jayna says:

    Reading what their 24-year-old daughter posted, it does seem like it’s a hard time for the family as a whole. She called it a “challenging time” for the family. Posted online: The 25-year-old Jennifer revealed about the divorce announcement on Instagram on Monday afternoon, writing: “I’m still learning how to best support my own process and emotions as well as my family members at this time and am grateful for the space to do so.”

  11. Joanna says:

    It’s sad. Seeing couples that have been together for decades gives me hope that I will find the same. So seeing them break up saddens me.

  12. mill says:

    My neighbor called this weeks ago. She’s on her linkedin and said the tone of mg’s posts changed dramatically over the past several months. More focus on women’s rights and a different vibe than normally used.

    don’t know if he cheated, she couldn’t take his personality anymore or they just grew apart over time. their youngest kid turned 18, so they could have just been holding on til he was out of the house like many other parents.

    they’ve done a lot of awful things (mainly him) and a lot of amazing things. hopefully this is a good thing not a bad thing, charity wise.

    • SarahCS says:

      Hmm, I follow her in IG so I’m off to check out whether there was a similar shift in what she was posting there.

    • Lucy2 says:

      That’s interesting. It sounds like they most likely have been growing apart for quite some time, and stuck it out for their kids to reach adulthood. But it still has to be very difficult and complicated.
      I definitely get the impression that she is the more caring and giving of the two. That amount of money is insane, so I hope they both take their share and do good with it.

    • Liz version 700 says:

      My mom said in an interview a few years ago she said Bill was difficult to live with, I don’t think this is wrong. It sounds like she outgrew him.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        Bill always had a rep as being very difficult to work with – I guess she got tired of being in that kind of relationship/environment.

  13. bus says:

    Out of the two, I’d say she’s the one most likely to have a side piece. Bill doesn’t seem to be the outwardly emotional type and perhaps she found someone who is? Apart from the massive amounts of money they both have, it might help explain why she’s not seeking spousal support.

    • Soupie says:

      My ex is an aerospace engineer. The stereotypes about the males are true. Very linear, very skeptical, unemotional, undemonstrative and more.

    • Truthiness says:

      He negotiated one weekend trip away with his ex, Anna Winblad, EVERY YEAR, before getting married. Allegedly he looked forward to those trips.

      • Yonati says:

        Whoa! Really? That’s interesting.

      • Seraphina says:

        I just finished reading an article about the woman and their weekend once a year. But once a year???? If I was emotionally tied to someone and the intimacy was good, once a year would not be enough. To each their own. And who knows what really floats this man’s boat.

    • Isabella says:

      Bill Gates has a sleazy side. He was seen with Jeffrey Epstein at least 6 times, according to a New York Times investigation last year. Gates even flew on the famous Lolita Express even though he has his own plane and much better security. He’s never explained the connections in a convincing way, says the Times.

  14. SusanRagain says:

    This divorce is interesting to me.
    She has always struck me as much more humane than Bill, IMO.

    After 3 healthy children and 27 years together, this is still a successful union.

    Their level of wealth is morally obscene to me, billionaires should not exist.
    Yes, they have created a foundation, etc. Excellent, do good works with that money, globally.

    My thoughts on that wealth level are why wait to do good work/donate it to charity?
    Fund the arts, name the flipping museum after yourself if you want.
    Rebuild housing, bridges, fund hospitals, pay for 150 bright people to become doctors, medical research, the list goes on forever. Why wait?

    I would think the fastest solution would be to divide everything by half, sign NDA and move right along with your lives. The tabs are going to have a feast on the gossip with this story.

    • lucy2 says:

      I think a lot of foundations like this tend to move a little more slowly, so that the pot always refills as they make donations.
      That is a big part of why I was so impressed with MacKenzie Scott’s donations, she did a LOT right out of the gate – in addition to being very targeted to organizations that will do a lot of good, quickly.

  15. Yonati says:

    As a Seattlite and business owner who hangs around other women business owners, I can’t tell you how many stories I’ve heard about how women are treated at Microsoft. They’re expected to devote all their time to MS. They are overworked, under extreme stress, and physically drained and unwell. Many of the workers are contract workers so they’re constantly trying to win a new contract. This is how billionaires do temp jobs. Also, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is not the savior of the world – bottom line, it’s a tax shelter for propagating the “Bill Gates Philosophy.” He feeds money to himself for tax breaks and gives the leftovers to charities he created in order to give himself more tax breaks.

    • FHMom says:

      Starbucks, too. I was a temp worker for them in the 90’s. Irritated me so much to read how well they treated their workers when so many were temps who were not given healthcare and other perks. . Maybe it’s different now?

    • Ines says:

      Microsoft employee here (but in the UK). Best job I’ve ever had, and I will leave only when I retire. I am pretty senior, so I run quite large, stressful projects (just like my men colleagues do), but my work life balance is superb. I never finish after 5PM, unless I have an escalation (which is very rare). NEver work on weekends, etc. I’m a permanent employee and so are all my colleagues, at least at my level. Maybe some of those issues are US related. In this page, people keep proudly talking about the great “work ethic” people in the US have, compared to us “lazy” Brits, especially when it comes to the feedback Meghan got from her staff. While I feel she was treated unfairly, your description of working conditions in Microsoft sound like US issues, not Microsoft issues.

    • Kim says:

      Long time Seattle resident and business owner, too. This is the Microsoft world. Men are also also overworked, stressed, and contract workers. I’ve talked to plenty. Including men in higher positions who look for work outside of Microsoft after doing their time.

      However, there’s always the bigger picture of how women are unequal in the workforce, but this isn’t just Microsoft.

      A good overview of Gates is the Jan. 13, 1997 Time article In Search of the Real Bill Gates.

  16. Nina says:

    This is very interesting. Couple that’s this long together and that’s this rich, with a huge world-famous charity that’s in both their names, they don’t divorce just because they are growing apart. Both of them can easily live completely separate lives, they have the means for it. The fact that they decided to go through public scrutiny and all the legal complications this is going to bring (divorce is stressful and legal hassle even when couple does agree on everything) it tells me that something happened that made it unbearable. I wonder what it was?

    • Kaybee says:

      I totally agree with you. I think something major is about to be revealed and she wants to dissociate the foundation and herself from him. We may never know though, cos the crisis management that Bill Gates and the foundation can afford is likely infinitely magically stupendously effective. Maybe this is just a contingency plan.
      Fingers crossed 🤞.

  17. Roo says:

    Maybe it has to do with information about how Bill and the Foundation had closer ties to Epstein than had been previously admitted? I would be grossed out if my husband spent any time with Epstein!

    Am I allowed to post a link to an article? https://www.theverge.com/2019/10/12/20911488/bill-gates-foundation-jeffrey-epstein-meetings

    • Lizzie Bathory says:

      Yep. Bill Gates was also listed on the flight logs of Epstein’s jet. And Gates allowed Epstein to “direct” donations from himself to MIT years after Epstein’s conviction in Florida. Why does Bill Gates, who could easily call up MIT & give them money, allow a donation to be funneled through a convicted child sex abuser? There’s a (non-pandemic) reason Gates stepped down from the board last year.

      And while it’s entirely possible that there are many personal reasons for this divorce, the realist in me thinks this is a way to legally shield half of their assets & protect the foundation (with all the assets they directed to it) in case Ghislaine Maxwell starts talking. I’m guessing someone even compared the pros & cons on a blackboard.

      • tempest prognosticator says:

        Interesting! More will be revealed, I’m sure.

      • AMJ says:

        This. She knew who he was (detached, calculating man on autism spectrum) for three decades. It’s not like she spent them hoping he’d become a tender lover and a social butterfly one day. I don’t buy this as a real split, just as a protection strategy for their money.

    • Sue Denim says:

      wow, interesting article…this may be it…and btw, how Epstein continues to be called a “financier” even a disgraced one, is such white male privilege. Same w terms like “sexual misconduct.” Awful…

      • wtf says:

        GIRL THIS!!!
        There was this great article years ago that compared headlines about white suspects versus black victims. It was astonishing.

  18. Christa says:

    I know it’s so pre millennium but he will now be America’s eligible bachelor. And all the pictures flying around! He was really handsome in his younger years. It makes my nerd heart flutter a little. Lol

    • Amelie says:

      Well beauty is in the eye of the beholder right? I don’t find Bill Gates remotely attractive, not hideous or anything but just very, very plain looking, even in his younger years. He always had this goofy nerdy look going on which isn’t a bad thing lol. But not my cup of tea.

  19. AnnaC says:

    I actually gasped when I read this story last night, I was so surprised. Aside from that, everyone else has pretty much posted what I wondered/thought about why/what happened.

  20. Jess says:

    I just saw on Twitter that there was an old article about him that said he negotiated a weekend away with an ex-gf as part of marrying Melinda. I think we also forget, in a world of Zuckerbergs and Bezos, how hated he was even in Silicon Valley as an SOB. Melinda may have just become exhausted of doing all the emotional labor in the relationship.

  21. Lowrider says:

    White boy summer in full effect!

    I wonder long Zuckerberg marriage will last.

    • MaryContrary says:

      Their kids are still young. So I’m guessing it will be a while before Priscilla reaches her limit.

  22. Crows says:

    Bill has a bunch of poor things about him. I bet completely this was Melinda. A friend who worked closely with them was not surprised

  23. Watson says:

    This made me sad for some reason. 27 years is a lifetime of being married!

  24. msd says:

    The statement reads like it was mutual decision but she has hinted at problems before. He’s an emotionally unavailable workaholic, basically. Now that their last kid has finished school … eh, maybe it was just time.

    I’ll be quite surprised if other people are involved. Although, weirder things have happened.

  25. Crows says:

    Youngest is 18. That’s when it happens. We’ll never know, they’re too smart for that. I’m shocked and no. So many reasons

  26. Lizzie says:

    I always liked that they were a boring couple who were happy being boring because their priorities were raising their kids and running the foundation. I also thought he recognized his lack of emotional understanding and relied on his wife to lead him.
    Idk, I can see them saying we had a good marriage and raised the kids but I’m just done with you.

  27. Jess says:

    Here’s the article that includes the detail about his yearly weekend with his ex. This is an approved article in Time-this is not a rumor. http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1120657-12,00.html

    • Jayna says:

      I looked at that article. It stated his wife was also there that weekend they were mentioning had just happened. So maybe she’s always gone with him for his annual weekend visit to his ex-’s home.

  28. pravdaverdad says:

    Tell CNBC, it was a whiteboard with EXPO markers
    oy

  29. Crows says:

    If Bill and Mel want to keep doing what they do, they don’t need to be married. Not surprise youngest is 18. Poor people break up then too. Best wishes to the family

  30. Marigold says:

    My thoughts are that she wants more in her later life. She has plenty of money and friends. A fulfilling career. She probably wants a partner that she can enjoy true connection and warmth with.

  31. tatannelise says:

    Hi! My husband and kid are on the autism spectrum. Can we not throw every harmful stereotype about autistic people in the book at Bill Gates just because he’s a rich person? Apparently, my super-loving husband and kid are actually emotionless bots who don’t deserve friendship and normal human connections because of their differences. Bummer for us that we’re not independently wealthy and can’t buy friends!

    My kid is struggling a lot socially this year because he has an ableist teacher who resents him and doesn’t work to include him *even though his classroom peers are all really nice to him!*, so this thread is breaking my heart on all the levels. Autistic people aren’t robots, and they have very deep, very real feelings. Sometimes they express them awkwardly.

    My husband is a scientist, and yes, lots of scientists are on the spectrum or close to it. I personally find them fascinating and enjoy my friendships with them tremendously.

    • Twin falls says:

      The idea that being shy/socially awkward and/or on the spectrum of autism makes one unlikable or incapable of being a loving person is really awful.

      I’m sorry your son is struggling this year. I wish his teacher would see past her own ignorance to the beautiful unique and fully human person your son is.

      • tatannelise says:

        Thank you. He’s such a wonderful kid, but she just doesn’t want to be bothered. I come from a family of educators and try to give teachers the benefit of the doubt, but she really is the worst.

    • Lizzie Bathory says:

      I’m so sorry your kid is struggling, tatannelise. It’s awful how abelist some educators can be. Your husband & son sound great! Bill Gates’s issue isn’t whether or not he’s neurotypical. His issue is that he’s ruthless, greedy & much worse than many people realize. He’s used his philanthropy (which also happens to benefit him financially) to paper over many sins.

      I hope things get better for your kid.

      • tatannelise says:

        Thank you. I don’t have strong feelings about Bill Gates one way or the other–I don’t follow him closely–but this thread is full of people being like, of course she got fed up with him because he’s emotionally unavailable as a guy on the spectrum! Neither my husband nor son are remotely emotionally unavailable, and these stereotypes are harmful and ableist.

    • Ersatz says:

      Thank you for that. And I’m sorry your son’s teacher is terrible. I’m glad he seems to have a good family and friends support system though.

      • tatannelise says:

        Thank you. He does pretty well for now, but I worry he will have more difficulty as he gets older. He will always be loved and cherished exactly as he is in our family.

    • Anne says:

      Thank you, tatannelise! I am on the spectrum myself and feel disgusted by the false assumptions and judgements thrown around so carelessly in this thread. We are not emotionless or unable to feel things – more of the opposite, actually. I often feel so many things all at the same time that I have to shut myself down to cope with that. This lets ignorant neurotypicals think that I am “weird”, “emotionless” or “unavailable” while I am actually trying to filter through so much more than a neurotypical can perceive. Being highly sensitive is an autistic trait too, by the way. Geez. Educate yourself before you judge, folks.

      • tatannelise says:

        Best of luck to you. I am very angry with the ableism and ignorance on this thread.

      • Ersatz says:

        I’m starting to feel bad for the autistic partner of some of those women. And I don’t like feeling bad for men but here we go.

      • Saucy&Sassy says:

        Anne & Tatannelise, I was going to comment about this. My friend’s granddaughter is on the spectrum, and you will not find a more compassionate and empathetic person anywhere. In fact, her grandmother worries about her being too compassionate and how she could be taken advantage of because of it. She’s bright and artistic. I have no idea if there’s a book that explains the differences between people on the spectrum, but it would be wonderful if there is. Just like the rest of us, there is no “one size fits all”.

    • Hereforthisss says:

      YES. So many of these comments can be summarized as “he appears to have autism, so obviously nobody would want to stay married to him, and obviously he couldn’t find a new partner quickly.” So ableist. There are lots of reasons why even nice people break up, and lots of reasons to criticize Bill Gates. We can leave autism out of it.

  32. iconoclast59 says:

    Melinda didn’t ask for any spousal support, but according to People, she DID ask for all assets to be temporarily frozen; ie, no major withdrawals, no transfers, etc. This could get interesting. I say, Girl, get everything!

  33. Amelie says:

    I’m actually really surprised by this! Bill Gates has always come off as a socially awkward person and a bit robotic and Melinda was always able to balance him out with her warmer, friendly, humane personality. I didn’t realize just how much he was like this until I watched the “Inside Bill’s Brain” docuseries that came out on Netflix last year. It talks about his childhood and it is definitely clear he is on the spectrum. Also if anyone has someone waiting in the wings, it would be Melinda. I will be shocked if Bill Gates is the one with a new SO. Not to say he’ll never find another person, he probably will at some point. But he doesn’t connect with people as naturally as Melinda does.

    In the docuseries, it talked a lot about Bill’s relationship with his parents and how much they anchored him. He was devastated when his mom died in the early 90s and I Just remembered his father recently passed away too (September 2020). I’m wondering how much his father’s death is playing into this. Also his children are grown and out of the house and as people have suggested it’s very likely he and Melinda probably found they didn’t have much in common apart from the kids and their philanthropy.

    But also he is an odd man with a lot of eccentricities. In the Netflix docuseries, it mentions how when he goes on vacation, he’ll bring an entire LL Bean canvas bag worth of books (and we’re talking serious, heavy reading, not just fun summer beach reads) with him to read. My mom and I laughed like loons when we saw this because my mom ALSO uses those same canvas bags to haul stuff around (though not heavy cerebral books on vacation). However I could see Melinda tiring of that kind of behavior–dragging unnecessary books around and going off in his little world most of the time. She has been doing the heavy lifting in their relationship for 20+ years and probably sick of doing all the the work. They also have a 9 year age gap which could also factor into it.

    • lucy2 says:

      I have one of those bags, they’re awesome!

      • Amelie says:

        We have several! My mom had been using one for so long, she was using duct tape on the straps as they were fraying LOL! But they make great travel bags for a long weekend getaway. I always made fun of her for toting those huge things around and then when we saw Bill packing his books in them to go on vacation we laughed so hard we were beside ourselves. We just thought it was hilarious we had that one thing in common with him. My mom was screaming “LOOK! I am just like a super rich billionaire with LL Bean canvas tote bags!”

  34. Scarlett says:

    We got married the same year as the Gateses. I am married to a guy with a calculator for a heart, same as Bill, a business mind through and through, while I am the exact opposite. We are Empty Nesters too. Being married to someone like that makes for a very very very lonely marriage, it’s better to be alone than it is to be married and alone…and I wish Melinda Gates nothing but the best.

    For many reasons divorce is not an option for me, but it has been a rough weekend at home, and on some level I am a little envious of Melinda, please don’t flame me for saying this, it was not easy to put into words.

    My husband is on the spectrum, and I have always wondered if Bill Gates is too, great guys, just emotionally unavailable and after a point, it just gets to be too much to bear. Something about their divorce really got to me, probably because of all the parallels to my marriage.

    • tatannelise says:

      My husband is on the spectrum and is not even remotely emotionally unavailable. I feel like I have more emotional support than most of my friends whose husbands are “neurotypical.” Seek couples counseling and stop with the ableism.

      • Scarlett says:

        “Seek couples counseling and stop with the ableism.” That is such an incredible rude and cruel thing to say too someone you do not even know, but I hope it helped you feel better about yourself tatannelise.

        We have been in counseling for years now which is why we have been married for 27 years and counting. I was 21 when I met my husband, I do not know a life without him and I hope to never find out, if I have a choice.

        You have a wonderful day and take your sanctimonious opinions elsewhere, because you sure are barking up the wrong tree when it comes to me and my marriage.

      • Snuffles says:

        With all due respect, I’m glad you and your husband have a wonderful, fulfilling relationship. And I get this is a sensitive subject for you. But just because your husband is one way, doesn’t mean Bill Gates is the same and is just being misunderstood. Nor is every person a suitable life partner for someone on the autism spectrum if they just try harder or get therapy.

        And, yes, we don’t know Bill Gates personally or the reason why they are getting a divorce. But this is a gossip site where people speculate wildly.

      • candy says:

        She’s not being ableist. She is talking about a legitimately known fact about autism spectrum disorder. Adults with ASD are known to have difficulty understanding what others are thinking or feeling, as well as regulating emotions and relating to them in others. Sure, not everyone experiences the spectrum in the exact same way, that’s not what she claimed. She just said it is the case with her husband. Denying this won’t help anyone manage the disorder.

      • tatannelise says:

        Maybe (some) people with autism struggle with closeness because most neurotypicals harbor inaccurate and harmful stereotypes about them. Just a hunch based on this thread!

      • nicegirl says:

        Wow, T, she said please don’t flame me for this and mentioned her present situation. Geez

    • LillyfromLillooet says:

      @Scarlett Thanks for sharing. You are speaking from your own experience, and no one can take that from you. People do struggle in marriages with people on the spectrum. And people on the spectrum do struggle with closeness. You aren’t being ableist.

      • tatannelise says:

        People struggle in marriages for all sorts of reasons. It’s ableist to blame it on a disability. I know lots of “neurotypical” men and women who struggle with emotional expression, so it’s also ridiculous to pretend this is exclusive to autism or a result of it.

        Let’s try it this way!

        “My husband is in a wheelchair, and after a point, it just gets to be too much to bear.”
        “My husband is a different race, and after a point, it just gets to be too much to bear.”

        Not cool.

      • Ersatz says:

        @LillyfromLilooet Are you on the spectrum or do you just feel entitled to speak in the name of autistic people for some reason ?

      • Ange says:

        But T does it make you feel better to rage at someone clearly going through a difficult time? Have you furthered any particular cause by being awful to them?

    • candy says:

      I am so sorry. It’s hard to make a marriage work no matter how good the people are. I also think men in general just aren’t as emotionally available as women for a number of reasons, some of them social or cultural and others down to the individual experience. I experience a great deal of emotional satisfaction from my female friendships. I love my partner, but I do look to outside influences as well. This helps me feel fulfilled.

    • Kahlia says:

      @scarlett That’s such a hard place to be in. Thank you for sharing and being both honest and vulnerable. It’s difficult to put those thoughts into text, and I can understand your perspective, because I sometimes feel lonely in my marriage as well. My husband is a computer engineer and while he’s not on the spectrum, he’s emotionally not the greatest. Not great at emotional communication and he completely shuts down if I show any emotion that isn’t positive. If I’m crying or angry or vaguely irritated, I have to give him step by step instructions on how to “troubleshoot” me. After 10 years! Every time! He’s such a wonderful, sweet guy that people think I’m insane when I say I often feel lonely. We love each other and like each other so much though, that we work in spite of his emotional stuntedness and my rampant ADHD (which makes living with me… quirky). My point is that you can love each other, be lonely in a marriage, have a neurodiverse marriage, be incredibly imperfect, and still want to stay married all at the same time. Life is complicated and messy, and congrats to you for having a heck of a lot more empathy than some of the commenters who responded to you. Hope being the ableism police and hurting you makes them feel good about themselves.

    • Agreatreckoning says:

      @Scarlett, You shared a lot and received a rude & cruel response. Hugs to you. It’s not right to have what you’re feeling to be limited as neurotypical because you are not categorized as neurodiverse. All I can say for sure is that even under the best of circumstances marriage can be tricky.

  35. Janethetrain says:

    My guess is that she saw how much more effective at giving Mackenzie was post divorce. Both of those women are regarded as incredibly empathetic individuals that don’t desire as much “stuff” as their budgets account for.

    She won’t have to get approval to donate as much as she wants.

  36. Yonati says:

    Bill Gates is on the Autism Spectrum and so are many of his employees, from the scuttlebutt from people who work there (it IS a major employer in Greater Seattle, where I live). That being said, because it’s a “spectrum condition,” it can look different in different people. The “symptoms” only contribute to a very basic understanding of Autism, which in the long run is
    detrimental to the vast majority and skews how the world understands Autism.

  37. Snuffles says:

    @tatannelise

    Let’s try it this way!

    “My husband is in a wheelchair, and after a point, it just gets to be too much to bear.”
    “My husband is a different race, and after a point, it just gets to be too much to bear.”

    Well, I would hope that said partner did the emotional work before hand before deciding on building a life with a physically disabled person and what that means. Or dating someone of a different race or religion. Some people can handle it beautifully and find great joy in it. And some just aren’t cut out for it. And some don’t know until they get into it and things fall apart.

    • tatannelise says:

      Yeah, I would hope that too. One presumes this wasn’t an arranged marriage.

      I knew my husband was on the spectrum when I married him, and he is awesome. Whether or not you know about autism as a diagnosis when you marry someone, you have a sense of their personality and shouldn’t marry someone if you find their traits difficult to live with. This of course applies to all people regardless of disability status.

      In any case, marriages fall apart for lots of reasons, but blaming someone’s disability doesn’t seem like the way to go to me. My totally neurotypical parents had the most ghastly marriage imaginable (cheating, violence, alcohol abuse–you name it). If her husband happens to be emotionally unavailable, then that’s something to work on. Anyone who “knows” that’s an autistic trait doesn’t actually know much about autism.

      • Snuffles says:

        “In any case, marriages fall apart for lots of reasons, but blaming someone’s disability doesn’t seem like the way to go to me.”

        And I’m just saying that it COULD be a reason depending on the person. Considering the divorce rate in this country, I think it’s safe to say that most people jumped into marriage without thinking things through or even knowing the kind of work it would take to create and maintain a successful marriage.

      • candy says:

        Marriages aren’t 100% predictable. It’s wrong to blame someone because they “should have known” what was ahead. Many people develop mental illness, disease, or just plain change. The vows wouldn’t be written the way they are if there weren’t some curveballs in marriage. Quite frankly, you seem to want everyone to relate to your exact experience.

      • tatannelise says:

        I don’t! I just don’t want people to be like, autistic people are obviously awful to be married to because of my erroneous belief that they are robots devoid of human emotions and unable to connect. (I believe she likened his heart to a calculator … ugh.)

        Like, I dated plenty of NT guys who were ghastly at emotional expression before I met my autistic husband. I wish happy partnerships on all, but I do, in fact, think it’s crummy to reduce a bad relationship to one’s partner being on the spectrum. It’s probably more complicated!

  38. candy says:

    This shocked me! They were together a number of years before the marriage too. In my opinion, she initiated the divorce. I think it’s interesting that Melinda is offering a new perspective for women that life is never really complete, and you’re always on a journey. Sounds like she wanted a new experience. It’s sad for the foundation, though. I’m sure she will continue to do great work, maybe even better work. I once heard that Bill made a pros and cons list before marrying her, that made me a little skeptical. He seems like a good person, but maybe not as emotionally intelligent as she would have liked.

  39. L4frimaire says:

    Not sure what to make of this, except they what seemed like an equal partnership, he has taken a lot of heat recently for his stance on vaccine patents and Gates Foundation has gotten some criticism to their approach in some quarters. Remember he got sucked into Epstein’s orbit for a while, so hope it has nothing to do with that with Maxwells trial coming up. Lots of jokes on twitter about men sliding into Melinda’s DMs, and I’m sure lots of women are trying to figure out an excuse to go to Seattle now.

  40. teresa says:

    As a Seattlelite, let me just say this, it may not seem messy, but there have been rumors over the years here, so not only am I not shocked, I’m pretty sure that even if the shoe doesn’t drop publicly, it has definitely dropped.

  41. Brittany says:

    I’m autistic and I honestly feel like a lot of the comments here are very generalizing and negative about autism. I’m what’s called hyper-empathetic. I am not a “calculator.” I have only average math skills and love the arts. It’s a spectrum for a reason and if you’re not autistic yourself, please hold off on the judgment.

    • Ashley says:

      Brittany- I agree with you that some of the comments here are very negative towards autism. I have an ASD level one teenage son, and once you gain his trust, he is the most loving, loyal person you will know. Autism doesn’t mean emotionless robot. These comments implying the divorce is a result of BG being unloving because he’s on the spectrum are super ignorant.

    • Ersatz says:

      I’m like “Do they realize we can read this?” but then they see us as emotionless bot so I guess, they don’t care? Anyway, this site doesn’t feel like a safe space anymore.

      • tatannelise says:

        Are you trying to say you actually have feelings? Because I read somewhere that autistic people are akin to robots and totally out of touch with their feelings, so obviously, you are mistaken.

        (j/k, hopefully obviously. These comments make me sick to my stomach. I want to take my family and establish a neurodiverse commune or something now.)

      • Ersatz says:

        I will never be able to emotionally fulfill neurotypical people so I have no use. I mean, I hope at least I get to get thrown into the recycle bin.

      • tatannelise says:

        Ha!

        I mean, Ersatz, you also have *no* sense of humor! Autistic people are incapable of humor. ;)

      • Ersatz says:

        We get some basic irony plug-in after a few updates.

    • tatannelise says:

      Bill Gates is a rich geek, so it’s totally okay to make fun of him for being neurodiverse! –most commenters. So gross.

      • Christa says:

        Yes the commenters and lots of posts are so over zealously critical. If you call anyone on it, they basically reply that its to an a-hole because it’s a gossip website. I am sorry they were so callous to you. Sending a hug. Just ignore them.

      • Ersatz says:

        It doesn’t exactly help the neurotypical image when they act so dumb… ;)

    • Another Anna says:

      Agreed as well, Brittany. While I have a lot of the traits associated with ASD, I’ve never been formally diagnosed (I have a few co-morbid diagnoses, so I’m currently trying to decide if it’s worth it) and I take offense at the idea that ASD people are unfeeling. A lot of people with ASD are like icebergs – there’s a lot more under the surface than you know. For example, there are many ASD people who might share with you one thought for every ten they have.

      Also consider that Bill’s dickish traits are probably the result of toxic masculinity as much as it might be the result of any neurodivergence. He probably wasn’t taught any coping strategies (Boomers got the shit end of the mental health stick) and people made excuses for his behavior because he was a wealthy smart white man from a prominent family. Correlation is not causation. He can be a dick and he can be autistic but one does not necessarily cause the other.

    • Monica says:

      Wow, Brittany, I am empathetic to the point of pain. I never knew this could be a trait associated with the autism spectrum. There are other aspects of my personality that have had me questioning if I could be on the spectrum. I need to look into this. Thanks for posting about it.

  42. fluffy_bunny says:

    I’ll have been married 22 years this month and my only child is a college freshman who’s been at home due to the pandemic. My husband heard their reason for divorcing and was like I think we’ll always be able to grow as a couple. Which is great for us. The pandemic taught us that we really like each other because we haven’t managed to kill each other while he’s been working from home for the last 14 months. I hope Melinda finds someone who fits her needs better and doesn’t need to negotiate that he’s able to spend time with his ex.

  43. observing says:

    He doesn’t really strike me as awkward. He just doesn’t have that charisma that one associates with a celebrity. But in terms of how he behaves he doesn’t strike me as much different than one’s next door neighbour who goes to work and is career-oriented. He’s boring in his style of communication, which I guess is considered weird for a famous person. But if he were my neighbour I don’t think it would strike me to think of him as out of the ordinary personality-wise. Most regular people aren’t charismatic either or don’t bother to turn on the charm like Ben Affleck would.

  44. Wilma says:

    Didn’t they talk about the difficulty he had maintaining a work-life balance that worked for both of them and how much strain that had sometimes put on their marriage? I can imagine with the pandemic and the involvement of the foundation in that it became too much.

  45. april says:

    Did any of you read that his kids will only be receiving an inheritance of $10 million/each. I was hoping he and Melinda would give them more than that.

    • fluffy_bunny says:

      You can live very comfortably on 10 million. It’s very responsible of them to teach their children that they need to make their own successes. They’ve been given every advantage by growing up with money so I’m sure they will be successful.

    • goofpuff says:

      I believe the plan is for them to give their kinds 10 million each and to give away the rest of their fortune which I find quite amazing of them. I can’t see Elon Musk or Jeff Bezos or really many billionaires agreeing to that.

  46. Emily_C says:

    Good. She was always far too good for him. I’ve been wondering what she’d do when he came out against opening the vaccine patents to the world. He also hung out with Jeffrey Epstein.

    This has nothing to do with him maybe being autistic, which fwiw as someone who’s friends with a lot of autistic people I don’t believe he is *at all*. He stole the ideas he used to build Microsoft into a gargantuan monopoly. He plays up the “geeky” stuff to seem non-threatening, but it’s an act.

  47. Likeyoucare says:

    If one day, there is no passion and desire to be with my husband.
    I hope we can still be friend and walk in difference directions knowing that we still respect each other and have difference kind of love and affection.

    • Agreatreckoning says:

      @Likeyoucare, that is a beautiful thing to say. I’m someone who believes we are all in some level of what is called the autism spectrum. In truth, if you have a brain, we all have some kind of mental problem. No marriage is perfect. Hopefully, with luck and work we improve and grow. Sometimes those things conflict. I’m not a believer in “soulmates”. I believe that sometimes we find someone that we really enjoy spending our time with and recognize that sometimes they annoy us. As we do them. People change along with their ideas about everything sometimes. IQ doesn’t equal EQ. After enough time, it’s like magnets that draw each other together but eventually work against. They, quite frankly, probably bought into a belief of their extraordinaryiness of being together. Maybe the financial things are playing a part with the questionable things going on. I am curious what other things may come out. Staying tuned.

  48. Jessica says:

    I love the celebitchy family but today you all have made me cry. As someone with ASD, the ableist and shaming behaviour is really hurtful an unnecessary.

    The implication that because someone has ASD means they are incapable of love or giving emotionally is cruel. In my experience (being a member of an active ASD community) those of us on the spectrum are more often full of emotions and feel incredibly deeply, more so than a neurotypical person. Difficulty expressing these emotions is often a result of being told that they are too much, or inappropriate.

    Being emotionally unavailable DOES NOT EQUAL autism.

    • tatannelise says:

      Lots of hugs. I really don’t think these people realize a) how many people have autism; and b) that autism does not mean unfeeling or uncaring in the slightest. Usually, the “Sheldon” stereotype doesn’t bother me, but I feel like that’s the only frame of reference here or something.

      The misunderstanding is amazing. I was reading a book about ASD not long after my kid’s diagnosis, and it basically said that with enough training, he might someday manage to fake emotional responses, but it would always just be an act. It was published in 2010. I threw it in the trash.

      Both of my kids are great (as is my ASD husband), but my ASD kiddo is the one who notices when I’m having a hard time and offers comfort. He is one of the most naturally empathetic people I know. It blows my mind that anyone would blame lack of emotional availability on ASD. The people being ableist need to broaden their social circles and examine their own hearts.

    • Anne says:

      Lots of hugs from me too, Jessica. And thanks to you, tatannelise and Ersatz, for putting into words what I haven’t been able to formulate and for putting up with all these ignorant and opinionated posts here yesterday.

      There would be so much more to say about autism, and I usually love to talk about all the amazing and surprising aspects that might actually come with being on the spectrum (…fun fact: my grandparents really seriously thought I was clairvoyant as a child because I could/can pick up little atmospheric changes before anybody else does… Usually my predictions are still pretty accurate) – but this isn’t the place for it, obviously, no matter what the “commenting guidelines” for this site claim. Nevertheless I’m glad to have met you here (…you too, Brittany).

      A very big, very emotional hug to all of you!

      • Ersatz says:

        Oh thanks to you too and I’m joining the hug fest :) . Despite the offensive mess of a lot of the comments I’m glad I got to read some of the experiences of people on the spectrum and people who were actually educated on the subject, who both showed a lot of empathy and open-mindedness against a wall of hateful stereotypes.

      • tatannelise says:

        Thanks to all! I was so dispirited by the comments, because obviously, no one is going to tell me to my face how defective they think my ASD kid is, but it’s like … I guess this is what some people are really thinking when I reveal his diagnosis. How sad, frustrating, and upsetting. It’s nice to know that not everyone harbors ghastly stereotypes about autism.

        My husband is old enough and established enough to be totally indifferent about his own ASD.