Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds is a 10-time Grammy Award winner and the name behind 125 mega-hits for artists like Madonna, Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey. With his wife, Tracey, and their two sons, 11-year-old Brandon and 6-year-old Dylan, by his side, it seemed like Babyface had a perfect life.
Then in 2007, Babyface and Tracey—who, he says, never fought in public—stunned family and friends with the news that their 13-year marriage was over. "Part of the problem a lot of times in relationships, there may be questions that you want to ask and answers that you don't want to hear. And so you get to a point to where you kind of live in front of everyone else, and even though you may have issues, you kind of ignore them and just kind of keep it together because you have this perfect picture so you don't want anybody else to be disappointed."
At one point, Babyface says they started being honest with one another and themselves. "That allowed us to actually become really closer friends and cooler people, and also we came to a point where maybe we're not exactly the perfect picture together," he says. "But in the process, we had two wonderful kids and we have a wonderful relationship because we're actually probably closer now than we were when we were married."
Telling the children was difficult, Babyface says, but they're doing great today. "Brandon, initially his reaction was, 'Well, what did you do?'" he says. "And we said, 'You know, it's not really about what anybody did at this particular point because, first of all, we want you guys to know that me and your mom, we love each other. We're just not gonna be, like, together. But we love each other like crazy. We're the best of friends. And in this situation, you don't really have to worry about it so much because we're gonna spend time together. Both people.'"