Bill and Melinda Gates split because of a “combo of things” and timed their divorce to coincide with the high school graduation of the youngest of their three children, according to a report.
“It’s absolutely because their youngest child is graduating from high school, and the idea was that they stayed together through that,” a source told People magazine. “They limped through until their kids were out of school like a lot of people.”
The couple have three children — Jennifer, 25, Rory, 21, and Phoebe, 18. Jennifer has commented on Instagram that the family is “going through a challenging stretch of time.”
“I’m still learning how to best support my own process and emotions as well as family members at this time, and am grateful for the space to do so. I won’t personally comment further on anything around the separation, but please know that your kind words and support mean the world to me,” she wrote.
The unnamed source cited a combination of factors that led the Gates to split after 27 years of marriage, but did not elaborate.
The couple, in tweeting the announcement that they were splitting, noted it came after “a lot of work on our relationship.”
Melinda Gates, 56, was the one to file for divorce from the 65-year-old co-founder of Microsoft saying the marriage was “irretrievably broken.” Court documents filed Monday in Seattle noted there was a “separation agreement” in place, but not a prenup.
The couple has said they plan to continue working together at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
The source told People that there seemed to be an absence of rage in the separation.
“Nobody is going to want to invite more scrutiny because it’ll hurt their credibility,” the source told the outlet “I don’t think they’re so angry that anybody wants to take each other down, like you sometimes see. [Melinda is] not incentivized for that,” the source added.
One incentive for playing nice was the Gates’ desire to win a Nobel Prize for their philanthropy, the source told the outlet.
“So one thing that was part of this is, if it gets worse, then it ends that. It seems as if that was on the agenda, and that’s for both of them,” the source was quoted as saying.