AJ McLean Says He and Estranged Wife Rochelle Are in 'Therapy' as He Deals with His 'Demons'

McLean and Rochelle announced they were taking a break from their relationship in March

Michael Kovac/Getty
Michael Kovac/Getty

AJ McLean is putting in the work to save his 11-year marriage.

The Backstreet Boys member spoke to TMZ about his separation from wife Rochelle at LAX on Monday and revealed what they are doing in hopes of getting to a better place.

"We're pushing to be the best version of us that we can and to be the best husband and wife we possibly can for each other," McLean, 45, told the outlet, adding that they talk "every day" and he "loves" his family.

Ultimately, McLean wants his marriage to get to a "better place" and is going to therapy on his own, while he also revealed that he and the former makeup artist and hairstylist, 41, are "doing therapy together."

For McLean, the separation has been a "journey of self-exploration."

Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic
Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

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"I've never really done this journey since I got sober, and now is my time," he said. "I'm a little late — 45 years old — but you know, better late than never."

McLean — who is currently on tour with his bandmates — is also working on his 12-step program.

"I'm staying sober and I'm just focusing on myself," he said, adding that the years of drinking and doing drugs was him "not wanting to deal with [his] own demons."

"I'm dealing with it [now]."

McLean and Rochelle announced in March that they were temporarily taking a break from their relationship in hopes of eventually getting back together.

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"Marriage is hard, but worth it," they said in a joint statement. "We have mutually decided to separate temporarily to work on ourselves, and on our marriage with the hope of building a stronger future. The plan is to come back together and continue to nurture our love for one another and our family. We ask for respect and privacy at this time."

They continued: "Separation is hard enough without the commentary, please be kind and remember there are children involved."

Earlier this month, a source told PEOPLE that it was Rochelle that asked for space.

"She initiated the split," a source told PEOPLE at the time. "There were some trust issues. Close friends don't see them getting back together, though AJ really thinks they will."

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