'Jon & Kate's Jon Gosselin confirms new girlfriend, accepts criticism
By Christopher Rocchio, 07/15/2009
Jon Gosselin feels he needed to follow his heart regardless of any criticism that may result from doing so.
Although the ink has barely dried on the divorce filing he had allegedly been pushing for, the 32-year-old Jon & Kate Plus 8 star has acknowledged he has already in a new relationship with 22-year-old Hailey Glassman, who he was spotted with over the weekend in St. Tropez in the French Riviera.
"What began as friendship has grown into something more," Gosselin said in a cover story interview in People's upcoming issue, according to a Wednesday morning Good Morning America segment about the interview.
"I know that my decision to appear publicly with Hailey this weekend will be scrutinized, but I hope that people can see I'm a regular guy who is a going through a very difficult time in life and wants to move forward."
Gosselin first met Glassman via her parents, who appeared on Surviving Sextuplets and Twins: One Year Later, a pre-Jon & Kate Plus 8 special which featured Glassman's father, a plastic surgeon, performing a free tummy tuck on Kate Gosselin, Gosselin's now estranged wife.
Kate underwent the surgery to remove excess skin that had resulted from her pregnancies with the couple's twins and sextuplets and subsequently spent several days convalescing at the Glassman family home, where Glassman's mother cared for her.
Glassman's mother had suggested her husband offer to donate his services after seeing Kate express her frustration about the skin during the couple's initial Surviving Sextuplets and Twins special which had aired in May 2006.
Jon & Kate Plus 8 -- which has since featured the once-struggling family receiving tens of thousands of dollars of additional free or significantly discounted products and services -- premiered in April 2007, three months after the One Year Later special's January 2007 broadcast.
Gosselin's public unveiling of his romantic relationship with Glassman came less than three weeks after he and Kate publicly announced their separation on Jon & Kate Plus 8's June 22 broadcast.
During the interview, Gosselin also reiterated his June 22 broadcast comments that he is excited at the opportunity the separation has provided him.
"I'm in a new period in my life and I feel very free," he told People.
Gosselin declined to comment on how Kate felt about his new relationship with Glassman, citing the couple's recent statement that they have agreed to no longer publicly comment on each other.
"Kate and I agreed to a 45-day period in which we wouldn't talk about each other," he told People.
Despite his answer, family therapist Terry Real told Good Morning America that Gosselin's public behavior could be taken as a "fairly hostile public act to his still wife."
"If someone engaging in these behaviors walked into your office, I would think about revenge, a fairly hostile act," Real told GMA. "I would be wondering if this wasn't some sort of a declaration and the person in the marriage felt emasculated."
In addition, Gosselin told People "every 10 minutes I keep thinking about the kids and missing them" -- a claim Real also found to be contentious.
"If you're really thinking about the kids, the general rule is don't introduce another person that you're dating until after the divorce," he said on GMA. "That is just not a great message to send about commitment, about restraint."
Kate Coyne, People's senior editor, noted that Gosselin "has always been fairly unapologetic about everything that he does" and he was merely continuing that behavior acknowledging his relationship with Glassman.
"He said, 'I have two choices: I can go into hiding and a life of isolation, or I can move forward. And I'm choosing the latter,'" Coyne told GMA about Gosselin's People interview.
Coyne also reiterated Gosselin's own claim that he's enjoying life without Kate.
"He's really embracing this new single-guy life," she told GMA.