Denise Van Outen opens up about strange relationship with ex-husband

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Denise Van Outen, 48, married actor Lee Mead, 41, in 2009 after meeting when she was a judge on the talent show Any Dream Will Do in 2007. In an open letter to their shared daughter, Betsy, as she turns 13, Denise has opened up about what some would perceive as a “strange” relationship with Lee, as they try their best to co-parent their young daughter.

Betsy was born in 2010, with her parents split up when she was three years old, in 2013, with Denise still keeping a relationship with Lee.

In the open letter, published by The Sun, Denise admitted that she was “adamant” that she didn’t want her split to affect her daughter.

She wrote: “You were just three and we both had a duty of care to make everything the best it possibly could be.

“To be honest, it was never too difficult — me and your dad have always had a great deal of respect for each other and co-parenting came naturally.

“Even now when he drops you off after you’ve stayed at his, he’ll usually come in for a cuppa, so you can see that our relationship is genuine.

“Do you remember the three of us going to Disneyland Paris when you were five?

“Your dad and I hadn’t been a couple for a while by then and I know some people thought it was strange for us all to go away together, but we’ve never stopped being a family.”

Lee announced his engagement to Issy Szumniak after six years of dating in a sweet Instagram post last month.

While Denise started a relationship with Eddie Boxshall in 2014 with their budding romance going from strength to strength and they became regulars on Celebrity Gogglebox.

However, Denise discovered his infidelities in January last year and wrote about their split in her autobiography, A Bit Of Me: From Basildon To Broadway And Back.

Denise has now moved on with Jimmy Barba and has now admitted that she “wouldn’t change” what happened with Eddie as it led to her new romance.

Speaking to the aforementioned publication last year, the presenter revealed: “Obviously those things weren’t nice to go through, but where I’m at now with Jimmy [Barba], who has such good energy, everything was worth it.

“Honestly, I feel like I’m in a nice, happy, good place. I wouldn’t change anything.”

Denise also praised Jimmy as she appeared alongside him on Valentine’s special of Steph’s Packed Lunch.

She gushed: “He’s put a smile back on my face.

To which Jimmy replied: “She’s done the same for me as well.”

Denise also shared that the pair would not be sharing their first Valentines together but instead were spending it with their own daughters.

The presenter also mentioned that she prefers her partner to fix issues in her house than spoil her with lavish gifts.

She said: “I prefer romantic gestures over big extravagant gifts – like Jimmy fixed the plinth in my kitchen.

“Because my dishwasher wouldn’t fit and I came home and he’d fixed it and I thought that was a lovely thing to do, I’ve got a lovely plinth now.”

To which Jimmy replied: “It’s much better now. It was cracked, I glued it back together and I painted it, put some silicone on it as well so it looked brand new.”

Jimmy’s reward is a home-cooked meal from Denise, praising her “great soup and sandwiches”.

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