So much for it just being a rating ploy, huh?
Over the last couple episodes of Welcome to Plathville, fans of this TLC reality series have watched Barry Plath and Kim Plath struggle in their marriage.
Earlier this month, the parents of 10 (yes, 10!!!) even announced they had separated.
But surely this was temporary, right? Just storyline fodder for a new season? A bump in the otherwise-steady romantic road?
As it turns out… no, no and no.
On Tuesday evening, the Plaths confirmed to People Magazine that their marriage is over.
“After considerable thought and discussion, we have decided to end our marriage,” said Kim and Barry to this outlet.
“While this was not an easy decision, we know it’s the best choice for both of us.
“We have been through many highs and lows in our 24 years of marriage and as we navigate this new chapter in our lives, we will co-parent our amazing children.”
The statement was released on the same evening TLC aired an episode that featured Barry saying he felt betrayed by his spouse.
“One thing I thought wouldn’t ever be shaken was us. Now it’s totally shaken up. It’s just really sad. It’s a tragedy,” said the family patriarch on air.
In a confessional, he added:
“I look at her and I see a woman who feels trapped. I have bought flowers and bought presents, but I’m still an optimist hoping that she’ll change.”
Kim and Barry share the following children:
Moriah, Ethan Plath, 24; Hosanna Plath; Micah Plath; Lydia Plath; Isaac Plath; Amber Plath; Cassia Plath; and Mercy Plath.
They also had a son, Joshua, who died at 17 months old.
On Welcome to Plathville Season 3, viewers watched Ethan and his wife, Olivia, separate for a period of time — but they found their way back to each other.
A week ago, Barry sounded hopeful that the same thing would happen for himself and Kim.
“Kim and I, we’ve gone through a lot in the past few months, as far as relational things,” he said at the time.
“We’ve had conversations here and there and the feedback I’m getting is she isn’t happy.
“There was this whole issue of just taking her for granted, and it was a real big wake-up.”
Continued Barry on an episode that was filmed many months ago:
“Looking back on my relationship, I think I just missed lots of opportunities to show Kim I love her.
“Like taking time to go out on a date, that was a concept that I couldn’t put action to. But, for Kim, that was an issue.
“In my mind, I’m like I want to make this work, so I’m like, ‘Life is full of mistakes, and let’s see what we can do second chance-wise.'”
Alas, it’s now too late apparently.
Just a couple weeks ago, Moriah talked to People about her parents’ issues.
“I’ve known for months before anything actually happened, months before they actually decided to separate,” the 19-year-old said.
“I knew that they were struggling.”
“At the end of the day, I just want her and my dad to be happy.
“It’s really hard because they both want different things, so it’s hard watching.
“I want my dad to be happy, but this is tearing him apart, but my mom’s not going to be happy with my dad.”