Jared Knabenbauer is better known as ProJared.
He is a YouTuber with a solid fanbase, known for gaming and for a much-loved Dungeons and Dragons series.
This week, Jared announced to the world that he and his wife, after time and therapy, have decided to end their marriage.
She says that he's not telling the whole story, and reveals that she had no role in his
His wife, Heidi O'Ferrall, accuses him of cheating on her with their close friend, Holly Conrad -- another face familiar to their fans.
But it gets worse. She accuses him of gaslighting, emotional abuse, and soliciting nudes from fans behind her back.
The worst part is what Heidi didn't learn until she went public -- the things that fans confessed to her.
Jared had allegedly been swapping nudes with his minor fans.
This is ProJared
Even if you are Extremely Online, you may not have heard of him until this explosive scandal. He's a YouTuber. He had a lot of fans ... right up until this week.
Jared and his wife, Heidi, are divorcing
Jared posted this statement for his fans and received a tidal wave of well-wishes. Well-wishes that, it turns out, were wildly undeserved.
It turns out that he cheated
His wife, Heidi, accuses him of having had an affair with someone familiar to their fans -- Holly Conrad. More shocking than the cheating accusation was the news that Jared had BLOCKED Heidi.
There is evidence
Heidi will later make more direct reference to the evidence that she has that Jared cheated. But when she tweeted this, she herself didn't know some of the more harrowing things of which her ex has been accused.
And there was gaslighting
Lying to your spouse isn't gaslighting, but denying evidence before your eyes and trying to convince your partner that they're misunderstanding reality? That is.
He lied to a lot of people
As you'll see later in this post, his friends and fans alike quickly changed their reactions to the divorce news after seeing Heidi's tweets.
Clearly, he'd hoped that she would remain silent
Maybe he thought that he could control the story by putting out a statement and getting a lot of sympathy from his adoring fans. Clearly, he was wrong.
Fans quickly changed their minds about Jared
This is ... quite possibly the best tweet in response to this entire scandal. Unfortunately, Jared did much more than one ongoing affair.
Remember, this is about ProJared and no one else
Prozd is a voice actor, YouTuber, and (former) Viner, who adores his wife. Their brand names are close enough that he probably received a slew of accidentally misdirected tweets.
This is where it gets worse
Cheating is bad, but while there can be cases of fair exchanges of nudes, a YouTuber with a lot of young, impressionable fans soliciting nudes is ... very much not good. Still, at first, he made it seem like he meant well.
Then there was the secret Snapchat
Snapchat is more private than Tumblr (even the nsfw-friendly Tumblr of yesteryear) and, even more so than Tumblr, caters to a younger crowd.
Simply claiming that you deactivated an account is not the same thing as doing it. Considering what sounds like emotional abuse and manipulation during their relationship, we can understand why Heidi may not have checked.
She doesn't blame the fans!
Whether receiving nudes is cheating or not is up to each individual couple. Besides, Heidi knows better than most the kind of influence that Jared can wield.
Even Heidi didn't know the whole story
After she exposed him, fans came forward to share what he had been up to on Tumblr and on Snapchat -- this year, but also years in the past. He didn't just betray his wife, he betrayed the trust of fans who were misled. Kind of like his friends were.
Even Jared's friends realize what he was
Fellow YouTubers who initially defended him quickly realized that they had been deceived and issued public apologies.
Heidi's mad at more than just Jared
She's not angry with fans, but Holly knew her, personally. That's not cheating with a stranger. (Also, it's worth noting that Holly is Jared's best friend's ex)
Heidi explains her anger
Holly wasn't unwittingly seduced -- Heidi says that Holly took an active role in trying to destroy her relationship. All that Holly had to say is that she would "never hurt anyone." She then promptly set her Twitter page to private.
THIS is how close they were
That is ... so heartbreaking.
Heidi explains why this callout is justified
She's not bringing the weight of YouTube fame down upon a random person -- Holly is just as much a fellow public figure as she is.
This is why Heidi had to speak out
She needs people to know the truth -- for her own sake, but honeslty, for theirs, too. We would all rather know so that we can dedicate our attentions upon someone more deserving.
Here's where it gets even worse
A guy named Chai speaks of how he was manipulated when he was only 15. Notably, Chai is trans but was not on any hormones at the time, and so had breasts. Chai explains that Jared coached him to show more of his breasts and the rest of his body, all under the guise of body positivity and positive reinforcement. And Jared, of course, was allegedly sharing his own nudes.
Chai wasn't the only one
Chai's friend has a similar story of also having been 15-16 when this went down. Here's the thing: if two minors who happened to be friends had the same experience without knowing it, how many others are out there realizing that the same thing happened to them as minors, but assuming that they were the only ones.