'Survivor' Star Lisa Whelchel's Divorce Makes Us Wonder if Any Marriage Is Forever

Heartbreaking 15

Lisa WhelchelSometimes when celebrities get divorced, it's like, Duh, why'd those two get married anyway? (Hello Katy Perry and Russell Brand.) Other times, it's quite a shock and makes you question the whole institution. (Goodbye, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett.) Still other times, it makes your jaw drop open and your head begin shaking slowly side to side like someone in catatonic shock. I'm talking about former Facts of Life star and Survivor: Philippines cast member Lisa Whelchel, who divorced her husband of 24 years. Oh lawdies, people, not Blair!!!

Lisa, who played the spoiled preppy girl Blair for nine years, and her husband, Steve Caubel, got divorced on March 1. A week later, Lisa flew to the Philippines to film Survivor. She feels like the show was a good way to start healing from her personal devastation. She told People:

Going out to Survivor was helpful for me, to divert my attention and not just dwell on the loss.

Jeez, if only we could all go to a jungle after a divorce, eh? Lisa's three kids are all growed up, so she didn't really need to stick around to console them, though I'm sure they were upset about it. But they're adults, so ... onward!

Seriously, though, how sad is this? Lisa is a hardcore Christian. After FOL ended, she became a full-time SAHM and even homeschooled her three kids. I wonder who Patti Stanger would blame for this one? Lisa says:

I just never thought it would happen to me. It was painful to realize that it wasn't going to work out.

Painful, no doubt, but Lisa says she and her ex are still good friends, and they'll always be family. They even all got together to watch the premiere of Survivor. On a side note, how buff does Lisa look on Survivor? She looks in better shape now than when she was Blair!

I don't think this should make us wonder if any marriage can go the distance. Instead we should perhaps rethink our definition of a marriage that goes the distance. For centuries people didn't live as long as they do now. That whole "'til death do us part" thing was a bit easier when you only lived until 20! I don't necessarily think that a 24-year marriage that produces three kids and ends amicably should be considered a "failure." And, hopefully, neither does Lisa. She's a "survivor," after all!

Were you surprised to hear about Lisa? Do you think a 24-year marriage that ends is a "failure"?

Image via CBS

celeb moms, celebrity, marriage, divorce


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I don't feel it's a failure. Sometimes people just grow apart and it's not that you don't love each other but the love is different. It's also very hard when all the kids leave home.

AniAngel AniAngel

24 years, three happy grown children, and an amicable split, that is most defiantly no failure. I agree that escaping to a desert island for an intense game would be a great distraction. I'm rooting for her.

nonmember avatar Valerie

Her marriage failed because her ex-husband is a closet case.

nonmember avatar Tiki

I hate when people start trying to analyze a couple who are divorcing. We don't know their reasons, and it's none of our business. I just wish them luck on getting through this time in their life, as it's going to be hard. I know. I've been there. Being a Christian doesn't make it hurt less.

mumma... mummajenni

She looks amazing for being 49!!

nonmember avatar Jen

She was always pretty candid about their struggles and issues with communication. When her oldest kids reached high school she joined the Christian women speaking circuit and started traveling a lot. I always assumed she did that, in part, so she could get a break from the stresses of the marriage. As someone who has followed her career, purchased her books, lead her Bible studies, and heard her speak, I wish she had been more upfront about the separation/divorce, but I do respect her privacy. It has to be very painful even if it's something they've wanted for awhile. I wish her the best and I still think she's an inspiration. She's a very classy lady.

nonmember avatar Kristin

I think this is terribly sad. If they are still "good friends" and will "always be family" then it sounds to me as if they should have honored their vows. No matter if the children are grown it is still going to be difficult.

Michele Maust

I have to admit I don't usually follow "stars" but I was at an event years ago where she spoke candidly about her early relaionship with Steve. It seemed she had gotten through some of the tough stuff. I admired her and kept up with her on occasion. I had to shed a few tears when I heard the news of the divorce. Afterall we all have troubles in marriage. Some will have long term issues. As far as I know he didn't cheat on her and didn't abuse her or the kids-- so why this? I think she is trying to "find" herself and what she missed in life. This is not necessarily the way to find it. I speak from experience. Praying God will put together the broken pieces and broken hearts.

nonmember avatar Rosi

Sadden by the news, as I have followed her for years and I wish she would of been more honest when I saw her at women of faith

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