AJ McLean recently opened up about his relationship with his estranged wife, Rochelle.
The Backstreet Boys heartthrob, 45, revealed that he and the hair stylist have been working to ‘rebuild’ their relationship and they have been ‘spending more time together’.
On an episode of the Sex, Lies, and Spray Tans podcast released on Tuesday, he said that they aren’t giving up on their marriage and are in couples therapy together.
‘We still live separately,’ the singer — who marked two years of sobriety in late September — told podcast host and Dancing With The Stars pro Cheryl Burke. ‘But we are in couples therapy. We are in individual therapy.’
Earlier this year in late March, he announced that he and Rochelle were separating but insisted it was only a temporary break from their nearly 12 years of marriage.
As he updated his fans months later, he said their relationship is ‘much healthier’ since their break.
‘We talk everyday,’ he said on the podcast. ‘We are spending more time together.
‘We just have to rebuild something that was never there from the beginning,’ he added.
He explained that when he met his wife back in 2008, they did not address their individual ‘baggage’ before dating for a couple of years and then getting married in 2011.
‘I came with baggage. She came with baggage,’ he explained.
‘I had trauma,’ he continued. ‘I wasn’t sober or ready to get sober. She was dealing with her own s***.’
He then admitted that they both had unhealthy coping mechanisms and ignored any problems.
‘It was just a constant push-pull. She would sweep her feelings under the rug or I would dive into a bottle.’
He recalled spending time at an intensive outpatient mental health program in Arizona which helped him reevaluate the way he communicated with his wife.
‘Normally I would twist it and make it about me,’ he said about how he also has a better sense of empathy now. ‘Not anymore.
‘It’s taken this time apart for us to really do some serious growing and understanding and listening.’
This past spring, the couple announced their separation with a joint statement.
‘Marriage is hard, but worth it,’ they stated. ‘We have mutually decided to separate temporarily to work on ourselves, and on our marriage with the hope of building a stronger future.
‘The plan is to come back together and continue to nurture our love for one another and our family,’ the statement continued. ‘We ask for respect and privacy at this time.
‘Separation is hard enough without the commentary, please be kind and remember there are children involved,’ they stated, referring to their daughters Elliot, nearly 11, and Lyric, six.