Jon Gosselin's Life Has Really Changed Since His Reality TV Fame

Jon Gosselin's rise to fame began when he starred in "Jon & Kate Plus 8." The reality television series first aired in 2007 and followed the unique lives of the Gosselin family. The trials and tribulations associated with raising eight children proved to be a big hit with fans, and the Gosselins quickly became a household name. Unfortunately, as time went on, Jon and Kate Gosselin's marriage began to dissolve, as reported by E! News. After some very dramatic moments, and many tears, the show came to an abrupt close in November of 2009, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

As a result of his new, single status, and his departure from the show, Jon Gosselin found himself undergoing a number of life changes. His fans have followed his ups and downs and witnessed the former television star's numerous transformations. Everything from his career choices to his overall lifestyle have completely changed since he parted ways with the show, and some of his adventures since leaving reality TV have truly shocked his fans.

Jon Gosselin refined his style

Jon Gosselin's newfound single status seems to have inspired him to make some serious fashion changes. Once known for his very casual dad-gear, consisting primarily of loose t-shirts or plaid shirts, Gosselin started to make public appearances looking notably more refined. He was visibly shedding the look that he portrayed during his time on "Jon & Kate Plus 8." His fashion overhaul included a more crisp sense of style and some designer clothes courtesy of Ed Hardy, as noted by Us Magazine. Gosselin began wearing clothing that was far more fitted and stylish than before, and he flaunted brand name labels to complement his more sophisticated image. Ed Hardy's marketing director even told the outlet that Gosselin "seems to love our clothing," adding that it didn't appear the company was giving him free clothes. "I'm not aware of any gifting to him."

After leaving the show, there were visible upgrades to all aspects of his wardrobe. InTouch Weekly noted that baggy jeans were quickly replaced with formfitting pants, and cameras spotted Gosselin sporting everything from sweater vests to snappy suits and bow ties. The evolution of his fashion sense was a sign of many more changes to come.

The reality star played the field

Jon Gosselin quickly began turning heads with his new image, and the ladies definitely noticed. Us Magazine reported on his very active, and incredibly public, dating life. People revealed that becoming a single man afforded Gosselin the opportunity to play the field, and the media was quick to report on every new lady that appeared by his side. 

Fresh off his breakup from Kate, Gosselin was spotted without his wedding band as he enjoyed some time with 23-year-old Deanna Hummel. Her brother noted that they would "pretty much stay locked away like two teenagers. It was weird. He's a grown man." Gosselin's relationship with the much younger teacher lasted three months, before he moved on to Hailey Glassman, then 22. He said, "She's always a good friend of mine. Her family is so good. They took me in and I lived there for a while."

Not long after the couple were spotted vacationing together, Gosselin was rumored to be in a budding romance with Kate Major, a reporter. There seemed to be some disagreement as to whether or not the two were in a relationship, with Gosselin saying they were only friends and Major saying, "I will take a lie detector test and I would love for Jon to take a lie detector test because for him to say there was no romance is a complete lie." Whatever they had didn't last long, per People. Gosselin's life was soon graced by the presence of his longtime friend, and new love interest, Colleen Conrad. 

Moonlighting as a DJ

Jon Gosselin has explored a variety of new skills and interests, and by doing so, he has managed to take his love of music to a whole other level, per People. In 2015 he began taking on gigs as a DJ in Wyomissing, Pennsylvania. His involvement in the music industry helped him earn some much-needed money, and Jon seemed thoroughly happy when immersed in the energy of his live events, per ET. However, he wasn't just spinning records; he also worked as a stripper, saying, "I'm an integral part of the show ... Since I joined Senate DJ I've felt like I belong to something and I'm not just out there on my own — I feel as if I'm part of a fraternity or brotherhood."

Becoming a DJ has also provided Jon with a much-needed outlet, particularly since his personal life was very tumultuous. This sense of instant gratification was electrifying for him. "I DJ at the club sometimes, but I find promotion is more rewarding both financially and emotionally. I like taking care of people and making others feel welcome," he said.

Jon Gosselin monetized his television appearances

After breaking up with Kate Gosselin and leaving the show, Jon Gosselin was forced to start all over again. He quickly realized he could monetize on his fame by working the television circuit. Once again, Jon was in the spotlight, but this time he was earning big bucks for telling his side of the story. He dished the dirt about his experiences on reality TV, his failed marriage, and the many challenges he faced with his own children. Fans were quick to tune in to see Gosselin on a number of talk shows, such as "The Wendy Williams Show", "Dr. Oz", "The View", and "The Ellen DeGeneres Show."

However, TLC filed suit against him for breach of contract, per CNN. The network claimed it had lost $30,000 due to his media appearances. Gosselin's attorney released a statement, which read, in part, "Discovery and TLC has treated Jon Gosselin like a dog by attempting to keep him on a leash and muzzle him and deny the father of eight the opportunity to earn a livelihood to support his family." The legal bills and child support payments piled up. So his then-girlfriend, Colleen Conrad, set up a GoFundMe page on Jon's behalf, appealing to Gosselin's fans to donate. Colleen indicated the money would be used to hire a lawyer so that he could fight for custody of his children. 

He carved out more time for friends

Life was pretty hectic for Jon Gosselin when he was married to Kate. CNN reports that Jon was trying to maintain his marriage, his career, and his relationship with all eight of his children, all while starring on reality television. The seemingly never-ending list of tasks and responsibilities was all-consuming, and he wasn't left with very much time for himself. This quickly developed into a life of sacrifice for Jon, and when he split from Kate, things seemed to become even more complicated. His social life suffered greatly when he was forced to work multiple jobs to keep up with his bills.

During an interview with ET in the summer of 2016, Jon discussed the lifestyle changes he had made, and revealed that he was finally making it a point to enjoy some time with his friends. Being able to simply kick back with his buddies was a big step for the star. "I have a pretty simple life. I have guy friends now, which never happened. I didn't have time for friends — I worked. People bash me but I work more than most people."

Moving to the woods

Jon Gosselin went to great lengths to distance himself from the media frenzy that surrounded him. He was willing to take extreme measures to find solitude and made a dramatic switch by deciding to live in the woods to find some peace and quiet, per the New York Daily News. Gosselin seemed truly desperate for anonymity, and this was his way of putting an end to the constant scrutiny he faced from fans. The media was becoming relentless, and it was difficult for Gosselin to tolerate the constant exposure to negative messaging, so he removed himself from the spotlight.

Gosselin willingly gave up his comfortable lifestyle and traded his home for the peace that only nature can bring. Being in the woods helped him to finally find some privacy, and he relished the much-needed silence and unrestricted freedom that this new lifestyle offered him. The cabin had no TV or internet, so he was shielded from any speculation surrounding him. Instead, that gave him the opportunity to reflect on the strained relationships he had with some of his children, some of whom had stopped talking to him altogether, as per ET.

Abuse allegations cast a shadow on Jon's character

Jon Gosselin and his son Collin may have a strong relationship now, but ET reports that things weren't always so simple between this father and son duo. In fact, People reports that things became troubling in 2020, when Collin came forward with serious allegations against his dad. He claimed that Gosselin had physically abused him, and of course, a media frenzy ensued, according to ET.

The situation became even more serious when Kate Gosselin lent her voice to the conversation, attacking Jon's character and calling him a "violent and abusive person." Her comments further diminished Jon's image and added to the controversy.

Their daughter Hannah rose to the occasion and vehemently defended her father, saying to Daily Mail, "He's been a very loving and supportive dad throughout everything. Collin is facing many difficult issues and my dad is doing everything in his power to help him. My dad loves us and has never been abusive to us in any way."

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

The dad faced another high-profile breakup

Things appeared to be shaping up in Jon Gosselin's life after he began dating Colleen Conrad. The couple seemed to be the perfect match for one another, and many believed this relationship would stand the test of time. Gosselin and Conrad had known one another since childhood, and they instantly clicked when they began exploring their romantic relationship. People reports that they shifted their friendship to a very public relationship in 2014, and fans looked on as the couple embarked on a number of adventures together.

Gosselin and Conrad dated for seven years before things started to fall apart, according to ET. Once again, the cameras were there to capture every sordid detail of Gosselin's personal life. His high-profile breakup from Kate Gosselin wasn't the only messy split that made its way to the headlines. He and Colleen Conrad also saw their relationship come to a very public end in 2021. In an interview with The Sun, he said, "It's hard, it was a big decision. We have been together for seven years which is a long time, so it's very upsetting. We had some struggles and we tried to push through them as best we could, but it didn't really work out the way we thought it would. I still love and care for Colleen but we've both determined that it's the natural end."

Jon shocked fans by working as a chef

Jon Gosselin's personal life isn't the only aspect that has undergone huge changes since his last days on "Jon & Kate Plus 8."' His career choices have also been dramatically altered. Fans were stunned to hear that after splitting anywhere from $50,000 to $75,000 per episode with Kate during the filming of their show, Jon went on to take a number of side jobs that were far less lucrative, per The Hollywood Reporter. One of his occupational changes involved becoming a chef at TGI Fridays, according to ET.

Fans were caught off guard by this move, but Gosselin made it clear to the media that he was not fazed by the chatter. He explained that he was very comfortable and confident in his new choice of occupation. "I only work there eight hours a week, because I like to do it. Why can't I work at a restaurant? I like to cook," he said. 

Gosselin's love for cooking translated to a much-needed income stream. He frequently doubled up on his earnings by working a restaurant shift, then heading to local night clubs to tackle his gigs as a DJ.

He installed solar panels for a living

As another new source of income, Jon Gosselin took on a job in the construction industry. TMZ reported that in 2011, Gosselin was employed by a company based in Pennsylvania. While on the job for Green Pointe Energy, he happened to have a very specialized role, according to CBS News. Proving that he wasn't afraid to try something new or put in an honest day's work, The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Gosselin put all his energy into installing solar panels for the company, and seemed to be quite good at it. Eagle-eyed fans may have noticed that this wasn't the first time Gosselin expressed interest in renewable energy. 

During a 2009 episode of "Jon & Kate Plus 8," Entertainment Weekly reports that the Gosselin family had solar panels installed in their home, and it was noted that in an effort to become more eco-friendly, they also switched all their regular light bulbs to LED bulbs. This new job seemed to be a good match for Gosselin, and it helped him generate some income while putting his time and effort into something he wholeheartedly believed in.

He explored his spiritual side

After a series of run-ins with the press that didn't reflect Jon Gosselin in the most positive light, he struggled to make amends with the public and regain control of how he was being portrayed. Gosselin had to adjust to dealing with stress without necessarily responding to it, and this proved to be difficult. In an attempt to find his inner peace and calibrate all the chaos that surrounded him, Gosselin dedicated himself to deepening his spiritual side, seeking help from a rabbi to make that possible, according to CNN.

Gosselin reached out to Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, stating he wanted get in touch with his more spiritual side, according to People. Gosselin indicated he was pursuing "regular study sessions" as well as counseling with the rabbi and that he was hoping to better himself. He spoke of wanting to repair mistakes that he had made in his life, and Gosselin appealed to his fans to take note of his efforts. He said, "I wish for the public to know my regret at having, at times, betrayed the moral principles that have always guided me," adding "I ask the public to please understand the challenges I face in living under constant public scrutiny, even as I am aware that I have at times courted that scrutiny."

Jon Gosselin's battle with the COVID-19 virus

Jon Gosselin faced a serious health scare during his bout with the COVID-19 virus. He shared his horrifying experience during an interview with Dr. Oz, detailing the frightening moment in which he realized he was dangerously close to being put on a ventilator. According to Gosselin, he narrowly evaded the requirement for serious medical intervention after being rushed to the hospital for specialized care. ET indicates he was hospitalized for several days. He said, "I was in a wheelchair. I had to wait in the ER ... and then once they evaluated me and once they drew my blood and did all my blood work, all of a sudden I'm getting antibiotics, steroids and a plasma antibody transfusion for COVID. It happened really fast."

The dramatic decline of his health really shook up the reality TV star, making him realize his own fragility. "You go from perfectly healthy one week to you can't do anything the next week. It was so weird. It's still weird now," he said.

Thankfully, he recovered and was discharged from the hospital with a new outlook on what truly matters the most in life.