Inside Chase Stokes And Kelsea Ballerini's Relationship

Chase Stokes and Kelsea Ballerini are easily one of the "it" couples of the moment, considering that fans can't seem to get enough of their hot and heavy romance. The twosome were first linked in January 2023 and have appeared to be going strong ever since. While Ballerini is no stranger to the spotlight, having had a successful country music career that began in her teens, she's still not used to the attention that has been recently placed on her love life. In 2023, she even told People, "I've never had people care about my personal life like I have this last year."

As for Stokes, he too was already a star before his courtship with Ballerini made headlines, as he's played the main character on the hit Netflix show, "Outer Banks" since 2020. However, it appears that he hasn't let the fame from that show, or from dating high-profile women, go to his head. In his own interview with People, he explained, "This journey has not been a quick and easy one," adding, "So I know that it can all be taken away in the blink of an eye."

What has apparently been easy for Stokes though, is his romance with Ballerini. That's because she told Stylecaster that it didn't take much for them to be on the "same page" with each other. Yet, just because their love story isn't filled with major drama, doesn't mean it's not worth knowing about. So, let's go inside Stokes and Ballerini's relationship.

Kelsea Ballerini slid into Chase Stokes' DMs before they met

You can't say that celebrities are totally different from the rest of us since the way Kelsea Ballerini and Chase Stokes met was actually pretty standard for 2023. That's because the two connected over social media. The "Half of My Hometown" singer revealed on the "Call Her Daddy" podcast that it was actually her who slid into his DMs though. "He shoots in Charleston and my manager lives there and he like, put the bug in my ear. He was like, 'You know who's really cute like when you're ready, it's Chase,'" she revealed.

Ballerini agreed with her manager that Stokes was "pretty cute," so she decided to follow him on Instagram. Luckily, Stokes followed her right back. Ballerini then went on to shoot her shot by just saying "hi" to him in a message. "I just swan dove right on in," she said. While that obviously worked out for her, it's worth mentioning that Ballerini admitted that she never saw Stokes' show "Outer Banks" before doing that. That hopefully changed once they started dating, especially because she promoted the third season of the show on her Instagram Story months later.

For the record, Ballerini isn't the first famous person to slide into another celebrity's DMs in hopes of sparking a romance, either. Power couples like Priyanka Chopra and Nick Jonas as well as Wells Adams and Sarah Hyland, apparently all got together thanks to some private social media flirting.

Kelsea Ballerini was nervous before their first date

Kelsea Ballerini may be a country music superstar, but that doesn't mean she didn't get nervous before her first date with Chase Stokes. In August 2023, Ballerini shared a video on her TikTok that she had taken months before when getting ready for that date. In the caption, she wrote that she had recorded the video for her best friend, seemingly to show off her outfit. Ballerini then shares on camera, "He's picking me up and we're going to a sushi place."

However, what is the most relatable, is that Ballerini shared with her followers that she had to give herself a pep talk before that date with Stokes also. While looking in the mirror, she says, "I can do this ... It's just a date ... You just go and you just eat food and you talk about things that you do, OK?" It does make sense that Ballerini would be a little nervous though, and it's not just because Stokes is a bonafide heartthrob. She said on "Call Her Daddy" that she never really went on dates before that, so she wasn't sure what to do when she started seeing Stokes.

It wasn't just their first date that made Ballerini anxious, since she apparently was also concerned when their romance started getting discussed online. She had taken to TikTok that time too, but to ask her fans to not speculate about them, presumably before they even knew what they were.

Chase Stokes and Kelsea Ballerini initially played coy about their romance

Chase Stokes and Kelsea Ballerini played coy about their romance before either of them confirmed that they were officially dating. They did drop plenty of hints for fans to speculate that something was going on between them though. It was a friend's Instagram post of them at a football game in January 2023 that seemingly sparked the dating rumors in the first place, because they looked awfully cozy in a group photo. But Stokes didn't seem to mind the attention since days later he shared his own photo from the game, of them cuddling up in the stands.

Stokes may not have made things with Ballerini's Instagram official, per se, but he did make it known that they were at least hanging out. Yet, he wasn't willing to divulge too much more when asked about their relationship by TMZ. "We're having a good time and that's all I'll say," he said. Ballerini remained just as mum at the time but did give what looked like a glimpse of Stokes on her TikTok. She shared a video of herself in bed, moving the camera just enough to show just a bit of what appeared to be his arm.

What was even more telling is that the couple was often photographed engaging in PDA. For example, at the beginning of 2023, they were captured holding hands at a Nashville bar, hugging at an airport, and later kissing at a hockey game.

The country star just got divorced when she started dating Chase Stokes

Kelsea Ballerini got together with Chase Stokes on the heels of her divorce from fellow country singer, Morgan Evans. The two finalized their divorce in November 2022, after tying the knot back in 2017. It, unfortunately, wasn't an amicable split because they went on to have a lot of drama. For one, Evans seemed to blame Ballerini for the divorce in a statement and then blasted her in his breakup song "Over For You."

Ballerini was apparently enraged over the song, and later shaded Evans on "Call Her Daddy." She explained, "It was really opportunistic for him to put that out when he did, when we were still going through the legalities of getting divorced, and I felt really used in that moment." Ballerini seemingly also wanted to make it clear that she had never blindsided him like he had claimed, especially since they were fighting a lot, and were even already separated before their divorce. 

It seems that Ballerini didn't want there to be issues with Evans though, because she initially told CBS News that it just didn't work out. "And that sometimes is like a difficult narrative to get your head around when you're like ... 'This is a good person. And I'm a good person. And this is just no longer good anymore,'" she said. Of course, Ballerini ended up telling her side of the story with her own divorce album, "Rolling Up the Welcome Mat."

This isn't Chase Stokes' first high profile relationship either

Kelsea Ballerini isn't Chase Stokes first high-profile girlfriend, because he was in a relationship with his "Outer Banks" co-star Madelyn Cline for over a year. The Netflix stars had confirmed they were dating in June 2020 by sharing a photo of them on a beach date on both of their Instagrams. From there, they continued to gush about each other on social media, and talk about their love in interviews. So needless to say, many weren't happy when the fan favorite TV couple broke up by November 2021.

It's unclear why Stokes and Cline split though, because they apparently kept that more private than their relationship. Cline later explained to Cosmopolitan, "Making my relationship public made it everybody else's business. And I realized the negative side effects of that while going through the breakup." Stokes, however, did suggest that they had ended things on good terms, since he complimented her in an interview with People and added that he'll always be cheering her on.

The exes did have to continue to work together on "Outer Banks," but they both claimed that they made a promise from the beginning to never let their personal relationship impact their performances on the show. "Work was always going to come first," Stokes told EW, adding, "[We promised] that no matter what happens in our personal lives, and the ways that life sometimes takes you in different directions, that we're always going to honor the work."

The Outer Banks star has been super supportive of Kelsea Ballerini's career

It's safe to say that Chase Stokes is one of Kelsea Ballerini's biggest fans. "The Beach House" actor has been super supportive of his girlfriend's career ever since they got together. In February 2023, for example, Stokes took his Instagram Story to praise her for her EP, "Rolling Up the Welcome Mat." He then expressed his excitement for her to make her "Saturday Night Live" debut. He told ET, "I mean, she's the best. I'm so excited for her and everything happening in her career right now." Stokes didn't stop there either, because around that same time he told Extra! how proud he was of her.

Stokes continued to inadvertently promote Ballerini's "SNL" performance on "Today" too, since when asked about it, he said he was a fan of hers. Ballerini was apparently able to live up to her boyfriend's hype because, after her performance, Stokes commended her for doing a great job in his Instagram Stories. That wasn't the first time Stokes had watched Ballerini perform though, since he's been seen attending many of her concerts.

Perhaps that's why Stokes was eventually labeled a "golden retriever boyfriend" by fans who have taken notice of how enthusiastic he's been about Ballerini. Yet he told ET he didn't mind that title. "I'll take the job ... Just to see her music and her shine in the ways that she is in recent times, it's been beautiful," he said.

Chase Stokes and Kelsea Ballerini can't stop gushing about each other

It's pretty obvious just how smitten Chase Stokes and Kelsea Ballerini are with each other. Stokes for one, can't help but rave about his girlfriend any time he's asked about her in interviews. For example, back in February, he talked about how "lovely" she is to People. Days later, he took it a step further when speaking to Extra, by saying, "She's an incredible human being. I adore her to death."

Ballerini is seemingly just as taken with Stokes, considering that during one of her 2023 concerts, she changed a lyric in one of her songs to sing the name "John B", which is Stokes' character on "Outer Banks." The "I Quit Drinking" singer gushed about their relationship in the press too. "It's just nice to feel so supported and seen. He's such a wonderful human being," she shared in an interview with "Today."

In addition to that, like some non-famous couples, Stokes and Ballerini flirt on social media. The two usually comment sweet things on each other's posts or share adorable photos of them together. In June 2023, for instance, they both posted about how Stokes had flown from Charleston, where he was filming "Outer Banks," to Seattle, which is where Ballerini was on tour, just so they could spend a little time together. In the comments of a photo Stokes shared of them hugging on an airport tarmac, Ballerini even wrote, "best 24 hours. ugh my heart."

Chase Stokes and the Peter Pan singer feel secure enough to make their relationship public

Many celebrities choose to keep their relationships private, yet Kelsea Ballerini and Chase Stokes seem to have no problem sharing their love with the world. While the twosome were already talking about each other to the press, and posting one another on social media in early 2023, they did wait until that April to make their official red carpet debut. They did that at the CMT Awards, where they held hands and posed lovingly for the cameras. According to Page Six, Ballerini even said on the pre-show, "I'm really, really happy. ... This is our first outing, so I'm like, 'Come on into my world and then bring me into Charleston,'" (where Stokes shoots "Outer Banks").

If you ask Ballerini, going public apparently became a no brainer once they realized that they both felt the same way. In July 2023, she explained to Stylecaster, "The thing that we've decided ... is when you're with someone that you feel secure with and that you're proud to be with, why not share it?" She went on to suggest that having a wonderful six months together at that point made it all the easier.

Ballerini also doesn't appear to be concerned with what her ex-husband, Morgan Evans, thinks of her and Stokes' PDA. On the "Call Her Daddy" podcast, she bluntly said, "I'm not married to him anymore and I don't need to care about his feelings anymore."

There were rumors that Kelsea Ballerini and Chase Stokes faked their relationship for publicity

With just how loved up Kelsea Ballerini and Chase Stokes are, it's no surprise that some people think their romance isn't real. There have been rumors that the lovebirds have even faked their entire relationship just for the publicity. The theory isn't totally baseless, since in 2023, Ballerini did release an album, while Stokes promoted another season of his show "Outer Banks." Yet, Ballerini suggested those allegations were ridiculous by poking fun at them on her Instagram Story. She shared a photo Stokes posted of them, looking at each other lovingly, and wrote, (via Cosmopolitan), "Idk, seems staged. Probably PR," with the sassy upside face emoji.

That wasn't the first time that the "Mountain With A View" singer shut down rumors about her and Stokes on social media. In May 2023, Ballerini responded to a fan who asked her on Instagram if she and Stokes had broken up. Ballerini replied by posting a picture of them kissing and simply writing, "nah."

Regardless, all their PDA still doesn't just make some think Ballerini and Stokes' love is staged, but also that if it is real, then it probably won't last. After all, Hollywood whirlwind romances don't have the best track record. However, the talented duo continues to just prove those theories wrong. Ballerini and Stokes really do seem to be very in love, so regardless of what others think, they may actually be each other's end game.