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Ulrika Jonsson admits she 'despises marriage' after three divorces

The TV presenter is happy remaining single

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 20:  Ulrika Jonsson attends the World Premiere of 'One Direction: This Is Us' at Empire Leicester Square on August 20, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Mark Cuthbert/UK Press via Getty Images)
Ulrika Jonsson (Getty Images)

Ulrika Jonsson has admitted she "despises marriage" after reflecting on Paddy and Christine McGuinness's split.

The TV personality and Gladiators legend has not been shy with being public about her own heartbreaking, getting married and divorced three times.

Read more: BBC confirms 'Gladiators' is being rebooted in 2023

Speaking about her own experiences on the tumultuous time after a break-up, Jonsson admitted that sometimes people "fear change" – and it oftentimes proves a reason to stay even when a relationship isn't healthy.

Swedish television presenter Ulrika Jonsson (R) and husband Lance
Gerrard-Wright pose for photographers outside the Fogelbro hotel in
Varmdo, after their their wedding ceremony August 16, 2003. The couple
where married in Ulrikas home at Varmdo in the Stockholm archipelago on
Saturday. (SWEDEN/NORWAY/DENMARK OUT) REUTERS/SCANPIX/Maja Suslin

lb/AA
Ulrika Jonsson and Lance Gerrard-Wright wedding, August 2003 (REUTERS)

In Christine's new BBC documentary, which focuses on her late autism diagnosis, she admits "masking" to fit in and feeling safe with him after abusive relationships may have been why she remained with the TV host for 11 years.

"When I met my husband that was a time when I was very safe and I wonder if that's why I stayed," she says.

"I know that I've stayed in a place where I was probably unhappy because it was safe and I don't like change."

The couple announced their split up in June 2022, saying they were committed to focusing on their three children.

PA NEWS PHOTO 29/9/90  ULRIKA JONSSON WEDDING TO JOHN TURNBULL AT ST.GILES CHURCH IN STOKE   (Photo by Jim James - PA Images/PA Images via Getty Images)
Ulrika Jonsson and John Turnbull wedding day (Getty Images)

"When Christine and Paddy announced their separation last year, I wasn’t stunned because it made me wonder, yet again, if they were yet another seemingly "happy couple" where all is not as it seems," she wrote in her article for The Sun. "I reckon there are a lot of them out there, folks.

Read more: Ulrika Jonsson reveals 'bed-hopping' behind the scenes of Gladiators

"Yes, I’ve come to slightly despise marriage. It's because I feel some people are scared of losing what they have and what they want in their future.

"Fundamentally, people fear change. It’s uncomfortable — whether, like Christine, you are autistic or not."

Paddy McGuinness, right, and Christine McGuinness pose for photographers upon arrival at the Pride of Britain Awards on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2021 in London. (Photo by Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)
Paddy and Christine McGuinness (Vianney Le Caer/Invision/AP)

Jonsson was first married to cameraman John Turnbull from 1990 to 1995. Together, they had one son, Cameron.

She later tied the knot with Lance Gerrard-Wright in 2003 had a daughter Martha, but they split in in 2006.

Just two years later, Jonsson married third husband Brian Monet – and they were together for 11 years before breaking up in 2019. Together they have son, Malcolm.

Jonsson also has a daughter named Bo with her former partner Marcus Kempen.

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 25:  (L-R) Ulrika Jonsson and Brian Monet attends the 5th anniversary performance of 'War Horse' at The New London Theatre, Drury Lane on October 25, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)
Ulrika Jonsson and Brian Monet (Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)

Since becoming single again, Jonsson has been open about her enjoyment of the single life, even appearing on E4's Celebs Go Dating.

The 54-year-old has said she's embracing the dating scene, and in 2022 even admitted to spending time with men as young as 26 – preferring them as they "don't know who she is".

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