The Real Reason Why Niecy Nash Is Getting Divorced

Actress-comedian Niecy Nash stunned Hollywood in December 2019, when she filed for divorce from her husband, electrical engineer Jay Tucker. The celeb couple had officially separated in June of that year, only three short days following their eighth wedding anniversary. However, they didn't announce their split until that October via Instagram

In a heartbreaking joint statement, which shocked and saddened Nash's fans, the couple said, "We believe in the beauty of truth. Always have. Our truth is that in this season of our lives, we are better friends than partners in marriage. Our union was such a gorgeous ride. And as we go our separate ways now, we feel fortunate for the love we share — present tense." Nash and Tucker added, "Thank you all out there for your support of us as a couple over the last eight years. We are grateful."

We can't help but wonder how what looked like such a strong and happy marriage from the outside could come apart this way, especially when it started with such a bang. Here's the real reason why Niecy Nash got divorced.

Niecy Nash and Jay Tucker got hitched in 2011

In 2010, when she was still the host of the Style Network's Emmy-winning home makeover and design show, Clean House, Niecy Nash, then 40, announced her engagement to Jay Tucker. Revealing that her husband-to-be had surprised her with a beautiful diamond engagement ring, Nash told Entertainment Tonight at the time (via People), "I cannot believe that God has been this kind that he would gift me this man." 

Their romance seemed like a fairy tale second chance at true love for Nash, who has three children from her first marriage, which ended in 2007. "I want them [her fans] to know at the end of the day [that] love is possible a second — sometimes even a third — time around," the future bride explained to People ahead of the couple's lavish — and televised — Malibu wedding in May 2011. "You can get another chance." TLC aired a two-hour special documenting the ceremony, as well as the planning leading up to their big day, including Nash's hunt for the perfect dress and venue — which did not come easy for the actress. "I am telling you," she told the outlet, "I was so excited to find the man, I didn't even think about planning [the wedding]!"

Nash's star-studded wedding party included bridesmaids Sherri Shepherd from The View, The Game's Wendy Raquel Robinson, and actress Sheryl Lee Ralph as her matron of honor. And the married pair seemed truly happy and deeply in love.

So, what caused Niecy Nash's divorce?

Following their October 2019 breakup announcement, rumors began to swirl about what could have caused Niecy Nash's split from Jay Tucker. At the time, the Daily Mail reported that the union had actually been troubled for a couple years. So, what was to blame? A source quoted by the publication claimed that the culprits of their alleged issues were a "full-body cosmetic surgery makeover" the actress underwent, her steamy sex scenes on the show, Claws, and the fact that the couple lived in separate cities: Nash was living in New Orleans while filming the series, while Tucker stayed behind in Los Angeles. 

Reportedly unhappy with the situation and "really uncomfortable with her graphic sex scenes" on the dramedy, Tucker noticeably skipped the series' premiere in 2017. This marked the start of a new trend, with Nash and Tucker being seen in public together much less than they had been in the earlier years of their union — including Tucker's conspicuous absence when Nash was nominated for an Emmy for her performance in the critically-acclaimed limited series, When They See Us, in September 2019.

Around the same time, Nash's Instagram feed seemed to change, shifting from romantic pics of the couple together, to a mix of selfies, inspirational quotes, and snaps of time out with her girlfriends. It seems the cracks were beginning to show to those paying attention to the impending breakup signs.

Niecy Nash revealed how the divorce has changed her

While speaking at the Essence Black Women in Hollywood Awards Luncheon in February 2020, Niecy Nash spoke out about her divorce, per People. The end of a marriage can be traumatic, no matter how long or short the union. And the decision to leave her husband was one that the actress clearly agonized over, especially since so many people, including her family, thought she and Tucker to be the perfect match. 

"The untethering from my family's beliefs, the internet's expectations and my marriage ending caused me so much pain," Nash said, before explaining that she'd simply asked her loved ones: "But what about my happiness?"

Nash went on to reveal that she began questioning her marriage when friend Oprah Winfrey asked, "Who are you without a man?" The comedian's answer was telling: "Girl, I don't know." That one question inspired Nash to investigate the strength of her relationship, as well as her beliefs around marriage in general. She said, "There was a huge myth that I inherited from the women in my family specifically, which is, 'You are nothing without a man. Get one, keep one, no matter what. Blind, crippled, crazy, married or lazy. Get one baby girl because they will validate you.'" The actress added, "This long line of women that I come from had never been taught what choosing themselves looks like."

Nash ultimately chose herself.

Niecy Nash has gotten emotional while discussing her divorce

During that same speech at Essence's Black Women in Hollywood Awards, Niecy Nash became emotional when she tearfully opened up about her decision to end her marriage. "Pain is putting things in necessary order," she said (via Page Six). "You've got to acknowledge how you feel. Trust that it is so much easier to walk in your shoes than it is run towards a lie."

Thankfully, Nash has since come out the other side as a happier woman. "I am the most grateful because I now know myself much better than before," she continued. "I let my daughters watch me walk through the whole thing. Because I want them to get up every single day and choose themselves. I realize I did right when my daughter said to me, 'I am so proud of you, and I want to be just like you when I grow up.'"

Speaking passionately to her audience, which included such powerful women as Kerry Washington and Vanessa Williams, Nash added, "You've got to own the part you play. I encourage you to walk in your truth, live your trauma and live your best damn life."

In happier times, Niecy Nash and Jay Tucker were #relationshipgoals

Over their eight years of marriage, Niecy Nash and Jay Tucker made many public appearances together and always seemed to be the picture of true love. They were practically inseparable: where one went, the other was right by their side. The cute celeb pairing walked so many red carpets together — at premieres, awards shows, parties, etc. — but who could forget the time Tucker gazed adoringly at his wife as she received her much-deserved star on Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2018?

Basically, Nash and Tucker were always a stylish and truly gorgeous couple, and in happier times, they were often seen holding hands or snuggling with each other, with Nash even planting a kiss on her man. The warmth and affection they had for each other was clear in their sweet PDA, and the genuine fun they had together was evident in their smiles — as well as their domestic life. Don't believe us? When a hair-roller-clad Nash shared a funny throwback clip of herself trimming Tucker's hair in the kitchen, Essence took note and dished, "You can always count on the Tuckers to share the love and bring the laughs ... [They] never disappoint when it's time to give us relationship goals."

Relationship goals, indeed. This celeb couple truly glowed with love both in public and at home, and their romance seemed here to stay.

These exes have remained close friends post-divorce

Despite the pain their divorce has undoubtedly caused them both, Niecy Nash and Jay Tucker have worked to maintain their deep friendship and remain close. Speaking with Entertainment Tonight in November 2019, the actress explained, "For us, it's easy, because we love each other. The love has just taken on a different form, but [he's] always gonna be my friend. Always." 

At the time, neither party was reported to be dating again, with Nash revealing that she simply wasn't ready yet: "I'm just over here drinking my water and healing. I ain't ready to put all this back on the block. It's too much too soon." She went on to say she believed that exes could work together after breaking up, but added, "I mean, you got to have the temperament for it. And if you're in a new relationship, you just got to hope that those people are not you know, leery, that that spark may come back."

It was hard for observers not to hope that perhaps a spark for her and Tucker could come back someday, especially when, for much of their union, they seemed like the picture of happiness. But we admire and respect Nash and Tucker's decision to amicably move on — and Nash moved on in a big way (but more on this below).

Niecy Nash is a successful woman who always lands on her feet

Niecy Nash, who turned 50 in 2020, has had an incredibly successful career. While giving an in-depth interview to Backstage about her journey as an actress the previous summer, the website itself reported, "After being cast in nearly 80 projects, Nash has gone from supporting and recurring parts on everything from The Bernie Mac Show to Ryan Murphy's Scream Queens to hosting the Emmy-winning home makeover show Clean House and finally to leading a critically acclaimed crime dramedy. All in all, Nash has successfully wormed her way out of the comedic pigeonhole Hollywood had assigned her." 

Indeed. And with her divorce finalized in March 2020, TMZ reports that things between Nash and ex-husband Jay Tucker seem to have remained cordial. As for what her career trajectory and personal journey have looked like so far in her post-divorce life, Nash once said (via People), "I did my work. I put my life back together piece by piece."

With popular TV series and movies to film, supportive friends, and an amicable ex, we were sure that Nash would be just fine in this new chapter of her life.

Niecy Nash remarried to Jessica Betts

Surprise! In late August 2020, Niecy Nash came out while revealing that she and singer Jessica Betts had tied the knot. Alongside a photo from their wedding, the actress wrote on Instagram, "Mrs. Carol Denise Betts #LoveWins." Meanwhile, Betts posted a snapshot of her own, writing, "I got a whole Wife @niecynash1 #Bestofbothworlds #LoveWins." 

While Nash wore a white strapless mermaid gown, matching veil, and rainbow-soled shoes, Betts rocked a cream-colored suit and sage tie with matching pocket square. The "Written in the Stars" singer even serenaded Nash on their big day. A week after the nuptials, Nash celebrated their first seven days as spouses, posting sweet videos and photos from the wedding, including dancing to Bradley Cooper and Lady Gaga's hit "Shallow" from A Star Is Born.

It's unclear how long Nash and Betts have been together romantically, but People reports the ladies were friends for years, often documenting their friendship via tributes on social media. In any case, Nash seemed to be in a great place. A few months before tying the knot, the Claws actress told People that she was enjoying the single life at the time. "This is the first time I've ever lived alone in my life, and I'm obsessed," Nash gushed. "I love it! You evolve. Who I was when I met my second husband 10 years ago is not who I am today. And at this age, you live long enough to know you don't owe nobody nothing. I'm a whole goal all by myself."