Canadians reacted with a flurry of social media posts in the wake of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his wife Sophie Grégoire Trudeau's formal separation announcement on Wednesday. The pair announced on social media that they were officially separating following 18 years of marriage.
"Hi everyone, Sophie and I would like to share the fact that after many meaningful and difficult conversations, we have made the decision to separate," reads a statement posted by Trudeau on social media.
An official statement released by the Prime Minister's Office said Trudeau and Grégoire have "signed a legal separation agreement" and the pair "have worked to ensure that all legal and ethical steps with regards to their decision to separate have been taken, and will continue to do so moving forward.”
Public reaction to the Trudeaus separation
The prime minister and his wife's formal announcement of separation made headlines around the world and garnered a strong buzz on social media.
Some kinder messages offered up words of support for the family, as separation is a difficult process for anyone. Others pointed to how any marriage would be made difficult given all the hardships that the prime minister faced throughout his time in office.
Sending out love and support to PM @JustinTrudeau
and Sophie and your family. Your personal life is none of anyone’s business. Wishing you all lots of happiness. Today must have been a tough day, as this announcement must have hit everyone hard. pic.twitter.com/gba0b9SnXP
— Canadianpoli (@canadianpoli) August 2, 2023
I can’t imagine being the Prime Minister during some of the toughest years of this century, while being subjected to intense vitriol and attacks throughout, was easy on a marriage.
My thoughts are with the Trudeau family. ❤️
— Sabina Vohra-Miller (@SabiVM) August 2, 2023
Precisely this. What marriage could survive never ending threats of violence and death against the entire family triggered by CPC rage machine, from the time Trudeau first ran as an MP. https://t.co/VkWDV2iyTg
— @JohnBeggs (@dbeggs13) August 2, 2023
The separation of Prime Minister Trudeau from his wife Sophie, announced moments ago via social media, demonstrates one thing - and one thing alone: the immense personal toll that public life takes on the immediate families and spouses of those who have the courage to serve.…
— Andrew Perez (He/Him) (@andrewaperez) August 2, 2023
One social media user highlighted the overwhelming amount of hate tweets and conspiracy-based responses Trudeau's announcement received, by stating "all the hate and accusations towards the Prime Minister of Canada during difficult times is just pathetic & not the country I grew up in."
Others put it more simply: "It's none of our business."
Every Canadian that post something negative about Justin and Sophie Trudeau's separation is exactly what's wrong with Canada today. All the hate and accusations towards the Prime Minister of Canada during difficult times is just pathetic & not the country I grew up in. Sad
— Clay Thompson (@harryt59_harry) August 2, 2023
To all the far-right trolls out there:
Don't be retched about the breaking news of Justin and Sophie Trudeau's separation - they have children. It's none of our business. It doesn't affect policy in any way.#cdnpoli
— Meanwhile in Canada (@MeanwhileinCana) August 2, 2023
Following the news, founder and leader of the People's Party of Canada (PPC) Maxime Bernier posted a tweet stating the notice of separation doesn't matter, and what matters is "he leaves the office of the prime minister."
What really matters is not that Trudeau leaves his wife, it’s that he leaves the office of the prime minister.
— Maxime Bernier (@MaximeBernier) August 2, 2023
Others simply stated that they felt absolutely "no sympathy" for Canada's leader, along with his family. Instead, some pointed to their own suffering.
It continues a wave of hate that's followed the prime minister, sometimes displayed through the "F*** Trudeau" flag.
he chose power and more enrichment
he could have been a private individual and been a father using his wealthy inheritance
Canada will be better without him
if he resigns then he could be a father to his children using his great fortune
— Gif_Whisperer (@TheGifWhisperer) August 2, 2023
Pathetic. You can’t even keep you family together. You are a caricature of a boy who desperately wants to be a man. You are so done
— Aaron Frederick David Courchaine (@AaronCourchaine) August 2, 2023
I don't expect any of the millions of Canadians who suffered personally under Trudeau to have any sympathy for him about anything.
— Zachary Tisdale 🇨🇦 (@ztisdale) August 2, 2023
“It isn’t fair to talk about his personal life.”
Trudeau has spent the last 8 years attacking me, my family, and millions of other Canadians in our personal lives. I’m genuinely happy that Sophie escaped his narcissistic orbit.
Trudeau does not get a pass. On anything. Ever. pic.twitter.com/PG6v2Rsdig
— Muninn Rapporteur of Odin (@Muninn18085831) August 2, 2023
Amid all the sympathy and backlash, one social media user offered up the question if news of the separation will influence the impression the public has of the prime minister.
Justin Trudeau and his wife, Sophie Grégoire Trudeau have announced they are splitting up. Good or bad, does this change your impression of our PM?
— Kevin Frankish (@KevinFrankish) August 2, 2023
And amid the major news that's dominated headlines, others are also looking to shine on light on important issues in the day-to-day lives of Canadians.
no canadian media, we don’t need 50 different op-eds from legacy columnists on trudeau’s separation… put your gossip ass energy into more productive things, like I don’t know, addressing how fucking unaffordable it is to live here?!?!
— Evy Kwong (@EVYSTADIUM) August 2, 2023
Justin Trudeau and Sophie separating is going to get more news coverage than disabled people suffering in legislated poverty/lack of care, & Indigenous people requesting landfill searches.
....But that's the point.
— Sarah Colero (@Sarah_Colero) August 2, 2023
A look back at the Trudeau marriage
Trudeau, 51, and Grégoire, 48, officially tied the knot in a Montreal church in May 2005 and during their 18 years of marriage, had three children together — two sons, Xavier, 15, and Hadrien, nine, and one daughter, 14-year-old Ella-Grace.
Grégoire, a former media personality, stunned the public when they first laid eyes on the glowing bride — dressed in a simple low-cut floral gown with a long veil trailing behind her. Trudeau was dressed in a gold tuxedo with gold silk stripes and upon emerging from the ceremony in the chapel, stepped into a 1959 Mercedes 300 SL, formerly belonging to Trudeau’s father.
While the prime minister and his wife portrayed a united front to the public, Grégoire said in an interview with Global News in 2015, that “no marriage is easy,” and that she was “almost kind of proud of the fact that we’ve had hardship,”
The pair's last public appearance together was during Canada Day 2023 in Ottawa.