Jon Gosselin says he'll 'always love' ex Colleen Conrad as he continues to help her through breast cancer treatment
THEY may no longer be Jon & Colleen, but Jon Gosselin says he hasn't abandoned his ex-girlfriend during her battle with breast cancer.
The Jon & Kate Plus 8 alum told Dr. Oz recently that he is still friends with Colleen Conrad, whom he dated for seven years before breaking up in August, and is there for her in her time of need.
Jon said: "I’ll always love Colleen. And we’re friends and it wasn’t because of cancer [that we broke up].
"I helped her through cancer, insurance and everything else. I supported her through her cancer. It was easier as friends to break off the relationship and get her through that as well."
Colleen, 51, was diagnosed with breast cancer in April.
Just a few months later, the couple called it quits.
The timing of the breakup raised suspicions, but in an exclusive interview with The Sun, Jon, 44, said the cancer diagnosis had nothing to do with the decision, insisting their relationship had become "fraught" during the coronavirus pandemic
"It's hard, it was a big decision. We have been together for seven years which is a long time, so it's very upsetting," he explained.
“It's really hard to even talk about it. When you're with someone that long, especially in the public eye and she's someone private.
"We had some struggles and we tried to push through them as best we could, but it didn't really work out the way we thought it would.
"I still love and care for Colleen but we've both determined that it’s the natural end.”
Jon confessed the unhappy pair split up more than once and even tried couple’s therapy in a bid to mend their issues.
But it took a pandemic to push them past the brink.
At the end of 2020 Jon contracted COVID and was hospitalized for 11 days. He also spent 47 days off work.
While he says Colleen was “super supportive”, he said the strain in their relationship only grew.
Then in February this year the worn down couple decided to call it a day.
Jon made plans to move from his home in Reading, Pennsylvania to Florida for a fresh start.
"We decided to terminate our relationship, we were both ready,” he recalls.
“I made plans to ask Amazon for a transfer and I talked to the kids about moving, but in the end Hannah and Collin decided they wanted to stay in Pennsylvania for school, so ultimately we stuck around.
“Then we got to April and that’s when Colleen was diagnosed with cancer.”
In August, Colleen shared that she had to put off getting a mammogram for more than two years because of scheduling issues and the Covid pandemic.
When she finally was able to get in this past April, they found a mass in her right breast, which was later confirmed to be “stage 2, triple-negative breast cancer.”
Jon called it a huge shock: "It was heart-breaking and scary.
I love Colleen so I decided to stand by her and do the best I can, I cared for her regardless of the state of our relationship.
“I wanted to see it through and support her through her treatment and work through it all.”
Jon says another deciding factor was the medical insurance he has through his job at Amazon.
"I have very good medical insurance, it covers the whole family, so I knew that would be the best option for her,” he said.
JON LEFT OUT
In a lengthy Instagram post, after a successful surgery. Colleen thanked those around her who have been most supportive, but notably missed Jon from the list.
The omission sent fans into a frenzy with many speculating online that the two had broken up.
The omission also took Jon by surprise: ”I went to most of the appointments in Philadelphia, took time off work to drive her there.
"I tried to support her as best I could, being by her side and meeting with all the doctors, trying to understand the cancer and her diagnosis, doing all the research and being as supportive as I could.
"I was at her surgeries while still trying to hold down my job. I was pretty much stretched to the max and overwhelmed and exhausted.
"I think I did my best for her, trying to be the best kind of friend, I guess, while knowing full well that we might not end up together in the end."
The Pennsylvania native — who shares 21-year-old twins Cara and Mady and 17-year-old sextuplets Hannah, Collin, Aaden, Joel, Leah and Alexis, with ex-wife Kate Gosselin — said the breakup actually helped strengthen his bond with hischildren
He told Dr. Oz: “It was good for my kids too, that I [could] focus on them as well and focus on other things that were going on in my life, other projects and work as well. Then I could really focus on helping my friend get through her cancer.”
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