The Real Reason Why Idina Menzel And Taye Diggs Divorced

When news broke that Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs were splitting in 2013, true love died a little everywhere — or, at least, that's how it felt to the couple's legions of die hard fans. The actors, who met working together on the hit Broadway musical Rent in 1995, had been married for ten years when they announced their separation in a polite (but almost aggressively-vague) joint statement.

Then, after a year of separation with no known moves toward taking the next step in their breakup, Menzel and Diggs surprised the public yet again by quietly and quickly filing for and then finalizing their divorce. Neither have ever given a specific reason for the split and their separation has (publicly, at least) been one of the cleanest and friendliest of all time, leaving fans with nothing but questions. Here, we dig deep into the possible reasons for the couple's split and what their relationship is like today as co-parents to their 10-year-old son, Walker Nathaniel Diggs.

Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' mutual split announcement gave nothing away

When Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs revealed that they were separating, fans were shocked by the news, but not by the classy statement that announced it. The couple went public with the split in a totally cordial, joint statement to the press in December 2013.

"Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs have jointly decided to separate at this time," the couple's reps told People exclusively at the time. "Their primary focus and concern is for their son. We ask that you respect their privacy during this time."

The statement represented a united front from the exes — and one that they've maintained since their split. It was also very, very brief, offering scant details about the breakup — and absolutely zero hints about what caused it. Naturally, this only fueled fans' curiosity. After all, from the outside, Menzel and Diggs always seemed to have about as close to a Hollywood fairytale relationship that exists among those special humans. Were appearances deceiving though? Was there actually trouble in paradise? If there was, these two made a point not to let it show.

Were there signs of trouble?

Not long before she and Taye Diggs announced their decision to separate, Idina Menzel got as candid as she's ever been when she refused to "glamorize it or glorify" their marriage. "We work at it," Menzel told People of the union in April 2013, adding, "We go through tough times like everybody else, but we love each other very much. We try not to be away from each other for more than two weeks at a time and we try to find new ways to communicate." Menzel also shared an anecdote about when "macho man" Diggs, as she referred to him, chased down a burglar the couple found in their home in January 2013. While funny on the surface, in retrospect, the story may have hinted at some of the cracks in the foundation of their relationship. 

"I was annoyed with him," Menzel said of the incident, adding, "Because I thought it was stupid. The guy could have been armed and he could have been hurt...I was frustrated with him for doing it. But his instinct came in — his child and wife were in the house — so afterward it was sexy to me."

Diggs left some divorce breadcrumbs, too. When asked what the toughest thing about being married was, the actor told Good Housekeeping in 2011, "Being so close to someone that they get on your nerves more than you thought anyone ever could [laughs]. I'm talking about my getting on her nerves."

Did Taye Diggs cheat on Idina Menzel?

After a decade of marriage, getting frustrated or annoyed with your spouse isn't just normal, it's expected. But what about deeper issues — like infidelity, for example?

While neither Taye Diggs nor Idina Menzel have ever mentioned (or so much as hinted at) infidelity in their marriage, there were rumors following their split that Diggs was, at the very least, considering his options. RadarOnline claimed that Diggs was "acting like a bachelor" shortly before the split, and reported in 2013 that he had been spotted out "partying" and displaying "seemingly single behavior" in the weeks before he and Menzel separated. Citing a report from Star magazine, RadarOnline further suggested that, in the months leading up to news of the split, Diggs was said to be stepping out on Menzel. In particular, he was allegedly "spotted getting frisky with a sexy brunette [who was not his wife] while partying at Emerson nightclub in Hollywood on June 19 [2013]."

The tab also included allegations of less-than-faithful behavior from Diggs in September and October of that year, in the buildup to the couple's December separation. And, just two days after news of the split broke, Hollywood Life reported that sources had told VH1's The Gossip Table that one of the factors "that caused rift in their marriage is Taye's roving eye."

Since neither Diggs nor Menzel have ever addressed these allegations, however, they'll probably forever remain exactly that: unconfirmed rumors.

Aaron Lohr didn't play a role in Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' split

Anyone familiar with Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' love story knows that the actors met work on the hit Broadway musical Rent, in which they both starred during its original run in the mid-90s. In 2005, they both reprised their roles for the film adaptation, where they were joined by, among other new faces, Menzel's current husband, Aaron Lohr. Menzel and Lohr worked together again in 2005, on the off-Broadway musical See What I Wanna See

Although Menzel is now married to Lohr, there's never been any evidence to suggest he played a role in her divorce. In fact, they didn't start dating until 2015 and didn't announce their engagement until 2016. Menzel and Lohr tied the knot in September 2017.

For his part, Diggs has not remarried — and isn't sure if he ever will. But it's not lingering feelings for Menzel that are holding him back though. It's actually his son, Walker. "I have moments of wanting to be married again even without the show. Just watching couples; I liked being coupled up. I want to be boo'd up at some point," he told Page Six in 2018. "I don't know if it will happen. Walker told me he wants me to chill out for a minute. I am right out of a relationship. So when I got out of it, he said that this was good to have me back."

Distance may have been a factor

There was one recurring theme in Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' relationship — especially toward the end: distance. Menzel's Broadway career kept the actress ping-ponging between the east and west coasts, while Diggs' television career (specifically his six-season stint on ABC's hit Grey's Anatomy spinoff, Private Practice) kept him tied to Los Angeles.

Managing a bicoastal marriage is tough enough, but after Menzel and Diggs welcomed their son, Walker, in 2009, splitting time between New York and Los Angeles meant parenting in different time zones, too. In 2013, Menzel opened up about the toll that living 3,000 miles away from her husband and son was taking on her during her time working on the musical If/Then while Walker stayed in LA with his dad — and what it was like trying to juggle her career with long-distance parenting.

"I think I do a decent job at it — or at least people tell me I do," Menzel told People of her ability to balance her busy career with her growing family. "It's hard trying to make the decision to keep [Walker] in LA so he can go to school with his friends. He would be with a babysitter or have to travel to me to New York where I am rehearsing all day — but at least he's with Mommy. It's those kind of decisions that torture me all the time."

Becoming parents changed Taye Diggs and Idina Menzel's marriage

Speaking of parenthood, welcoming their son definitely played a role in changing the dynamic of Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' relationship. Like most parents, the actors noticed ways that parenthood strengthened their bond — and ways it sometimes tested it.

In 2012, Diggs gushed about how becoming parents impacted their marriage. "Seeing Idina as a mother has had a wonderfully positive effect," he told Theater Mania at the time, adding, "There aren't many things that are sexier than just watching the bond that exists between her and Walker — seeing their similarities when they're together, and all the parts of her that I love the most."

Two years later, however, Menzel spoke with Redbook about the difficulties of balancing a career and motherhood and discussed the double standards that men and women face when it comes to parenting, possibly hinting that she felt some inequalities in co-parenting with Diggs. "The guilt is the thing that we as women all feel, whether we stay at home or we work," she told the magazine, adding, "There are a lot of double standards with the way the men in our lives see how we make those choices. I think there's an accounting for how much time I spend with my son, and men don't have to account for how much time they spend with their child. It hurts to feel that's a judgment being made. Because we're already judging ourselves."

Taye Diggs felt pressure from fans to make his marriage work

Being part of a beloved Hollywood power couple is a bit of a double-edged sword. Sure, on the one hand fans are rooting for your love to go the distance and cheering you on every step of the way. But, on the other hand, that same fan support can start to feel like extra pressure if the romance ever sours.

Taye Diggs admitted in a 2014 Redbook interview that he was always aware there would be a strong fan reaction if he and Menzel ever decided to break up, quipping, "Maybe they thought it was cute that we met in Rent." Diggs also touched on a few other factors that added pressure to the relationship, in terms of both their professional and personal lives. "There weren't a lot of couples like us in the theater community — and I know there aren't a lot of performers as talented as she is... and then you have the whole mixed [race] thing," he told the outlet, adding, "It was easy for people to root for us. Right now, we're still trying to figure out a lot of stuff because we're on different coasts and our son is getting older."

Finalizing the divorce was 'tough' for Taye Diggs

Whatever may have gone down behind-the-scenes that led to their decision to separate, and no matter how low-key (and tight-lipped) they remained about it publicly, moving forward with the divorce wasn't easy for the couple. Or, at very least, it wasn't easy for Taye Diggs anyway.

In 2015, the actor admitted that Idina Menzel's mega-hit (and mega-ubiquitous) Frozen anthem, "Let It Go," became particularly poignant for him in 2014 (the year the couple finalized the divorce). Although he didn't reference the split specifically, it's easy to see how his comments could apply to the breakup. "I use [the song as] more of a mantra these days," he told People of his relationship with the hit Disney track, adding, "Last year was a tough year for many reasons and I think all of us could use that lesson to release and keep moving on and not hold on to stuff."

Menzel hasn't been as direct in referencing her emotional state following the split, but we're guessing it's safe to say that, since Frozen fever coincided with her divorce (the blockbuster kid flick was released in 2013), belting out "Let It Go" on the reg was pretty cathartic on her end, too.

Idina Menzel regrets at least one thing about the divorce

Although she never declared her divorce to be the inspiration behind her soul-shattering performances of "Let It Go," Idina Menzel hasn't stayed totally tight-lipped about the impact the split had on her. In 2016, the star gave a rare insight into the aftermath of her divorce in an interview with People. Specifically, Menzel revealed, her divorce brought up a lot of unexpected feelings for her as a mother and in her relationship with her son.

"You have a lot of regret with a child, feeling like you're failing them in some way and not giving them the idealistic scenario," she explained to the outlet. 

Menzel also revealed that she channeled a lot of those emotions into her 2016 album, Idina, and specifically into "Perfect Story," a track she says was inspired largely by her divorce. "I sang it for the first time onstage last night in front of an audience and I didn't want to start crying," Menzel told People Now after her first time singing the deeply-personal song live. "I felt it coming on and I had to fight it [off] because you don't sing very well when you're crying."

Is there any bad blood now?

So, where do Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs stand now, nearly seven years after their split? If there were any hard feelings back when the breakup went down, it seems safe to say that they've long passed.

In 2015, Diggs explained that co-parenting Walker has been his and Menzel's top priority since their divorce and that, even personally, they're in a good place. "We were friends to start out with, but especially when you have a kid in the mix, there's no time for any negativity," he told People, adding, "[Walker is] our main objective, he's what's most important for us, so we're still there as a family."

In 2016, Menzel echoed this sentiment, stressing that she would never say anything negative about Diggs because that's not what's best for Walker. "Your child comes first, that's all," she People, adding, "He comes first and you have to get past your own egos and you never talk bad about each other."

Co-parenting is Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs' top priority

Any parenting struggles that may have existed in their marriage have clearly been resolved since their split. Both Idina Menzel and Taye Diggs have done nothing but stress the importance of being effective co-parents to Walker following their divorce. In fact, in 2017, Diggs told Us Weekly that they "trust each other" in terms of raising Walker, which has been key to working together as parents.

He elaborated to the tab, "I mean, it's not even about trust. We both love our son so much, that the best way to raise him is to provide him with whatever we can."

Menzel and Diggs even made their commitment to equally co-parenting Walker legally binding. Their divorce settlement reportedly called for splitting custody and childcare-related costs 50/50. Honestly, this egalitarian approach seems to sum up their attitude toward each other and their post-marriage relationship going forward as they continue to keep things equal, classy, and kind. Regardless of why the couple initially split, they've clearly let it go and moved onward and upward now.