Inside Robin Roberts' Relationship With Amber Laign

Robin Roberts, who is best known for her long-time anchor role on ABC's "Good Morning America," is also known for taking some of her personal challenges and turning them into opportunities for good, such as is the case of her previous cancer battle. Roberts' career has also spanned over 30 years, with experiences in both the television and radio industries as a journalist and producer. About a decade ago, Roberts also made headlines due to her previously private relationship with Amber Laign. Laign is a massage therapist and co-owner of Plant Juice Oils, a women's holistic health company specializing in essential oils and CBD products. 

While Roberts and Laign have been together for nearly two decades, the couple spent many years keeping their relationship out of the public eye. Many events, along with societal and cultural changes, helped bring their relationship into the spotlight. These are the key moments that have shaped their relationship, giving us a better understanding of who Roberts and Laign are as a couple and why their connection continues to endure.

Robin Roberts and Amber Laign first met in 2005

In 2005, Robin Roberts and Amber Laign met on a blind date where the couple immediately felt a connection. Ironically though, the date almost didn't happen because of scheduling conflicts. According to a 2020 Instagram post from Laign that Roberts then shared, Laign wrote, "15 years ago I met you for drinks on a blind date that both you and I tried to cancel ... twice." She continued, "We had a second date soon after and I couldn't believe how at ease I was with you as we shared each other's lives sipping lychee and apple martinis."

Two of their mutual friends helped set up this blind date, and it's obvious that the pairing was meant to be. Roberts and Laign have been together since 2005, and Instagram posts that look back on their beginnings as a couple suggest that the relationship took off quickly. However, as "Good Morning America" reported, the relationship blossomed privately for almost a decade, as Roberts didn't come out until 2013.

Amber Laign supported Robin Roberts after her cancer diagnoses

The relationship between Amber Laign and Robin Roberts faced a major test when Roberts was diagnosed with cancer. First, in 2007, Roberts was diagnosed with breast cancer, and she underwent successful surgery in August of that year. In an emailed statement to ABC News, Roberts said, "Much as I was hoping the doctor would say it was nothing, she did a biopsy and confirmed that the lump I'd found was indeed an early form of breast cancer ... So in the coming months, you will probably notice that I will have my good days and my bad days, but I know I will get through it with the love and support of my family and friends." While Roberts didn't name Laign directly, we know in retrospect that her then-girlfriend was among the family and friends she counted on.

Yet, the cancer scare wasn't over after Roberts' treatments. In 2012, Roberts shared news that she had been diagnosed with a rare blood cancer called myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS). "They say I'm younger and fitter than most people who confront this disease and will be cured," NBC News reported Roberts as saying at the time. We would later learn that, during this time, Laign supported Roberts through her cancer treatments, though their relationship wasn't yet publicly disclosed.

The couple didn't go public with their relationship until 2013

It wasn't until 2013 that Robin Roberts went public with her relationship with Amber Laign. In December, Roberts made an end-of-the-year post on Facebook in which she discussed her MDS diagnosis and undergoing a bone marrow transplant for the rare blood cancer. Not only did she thank her doctors, family, and friends, but she also made a special mention of her "girlfriend Amber." This statement was significant for two reasons. Not only was this the first time Roberts mentioned she was in a long-term relationship, but it was also the first time she publicly identified her sexuality.

From there on out, it was official: Roberts and Laign were in a long-term relationship and, after Roberts' cancer battles, it was time for everyone else to celebrate the couple and the love they shared. Since then, Roberts and Laign have shared posts about each other on social media, attended public events together, and even shared screen time on television programs. "My year in post was just full of gratitude and telling everyone all that I'm grateful for, including my girlfriend Amber who really loved me through a very difficult year and I'm very happy for the support," The Daily Mail quoted Roberts as saying on "Good Morning America" at the time.

Robin Roberts discussed her relationship with Amber Laign during her morning show in 2014

Shortly after New Year's Day, Robin Roberts took the opportunity to discuss her relationship with Amber Laign in more detail. In 2014, Roberts went back to her anchor job on ABC's "Good Morning America" following a leave of absence she took for cancer treatment, including the bone marrow transplant she received for MDS. On January 6, Roberts referenced the end-of-2013 Facebook post she made, which it was the first time she had publicly mentioned Laign. "I'm very happy for the support and it's just letting everybody know that reflect on what got you to where you are right now and be grateful for where you are," she said, according to ABC News.

On that same show, Roberts also discussed more recent events with Laign, which included attending a wedding together. While showing a family photograph on air in which she and Laign were standing next to the bride and groom, Roberts said, "The highlight, my dear niece, Judith, her wedding and the family was [all together] in Baton Rouge over the weekend." Roberts and Laign also spent part of the holidays together in the Caribbean before traveling back to the States for the wedding. Also that same year, Roberts released a memoir called "Everybody's Got Something," in which she revealed further details of the beginnings of her relationship with Laign.

The couple celebrated their 15-year dating anniversary in 2020

In July 2020, Robin Roberts and Amber Laign celebrated 15 years together. The couple took to Instagram to share heartfelt messages as well as photographs taken over the years. As People reported, Laign shared a collage of photos on Instagram and wrote, "Having you by my side is a gift as we continue to navigate this thing called life. I drive you crazy ... I know which is why I love you even more to this day. You have the kindest heart and most beautiful soul than anyone I know."

In return, Roberts shared a picture of crystal champagne glasses she had engraved with the couple's names and dating anniversary. She also wrote, "Sweet Amber's fav song is Stand By Me. Through alllllll the ups and downs the last 15 years, we're still standing ... together." Of course, this not only references the length of time that Roberts and Laign have been together but also how Laign supported Roberts through her cancer diagnosis and recovery. 

Amber Laign was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2021

Robin Roberts went public in 2013 about Amber Laign's support throughout her cancer battles. In 2021, Laign herself was diagnosed with breast cancer, over a decade after Roberts was diagnosed with the same disease. While Roberts' breast cancer was detected in its early stages and treated successfully shortly after, Laign unfortunately suffered through treatment complications. The first was in April 2022, when Laign underwent chemotherapy and stopped because of complications. According to the American Cancer Society, some of the most common issues associated with chemotherapy include hair loss, fatigue, and nausea, as well as mood changes, appetite loss, and infections.

Later in 2023, though, Roberts had good news to share about Laign's breast cancer treatment. After a grueling experience with chemotherapy, Laign underwent radiation therapy. She saw better results from the latter treatment, and she was thankfully able to stop radiation therapy in the summer of 2022. Reflecting on Laign's experience, Roberts told Entertainment Tonight in March 2023, "It was a rough year; her journey with breast cancer took some unexpected twists and turns but she is doing really really well." The star explained, "Doctors said when it comes to treatment, it's like women and shoes — they don't always fit — and so they had to find the right fit for her with treatment."

Robin Roberts and Amber Laign got engaged at the end of 2022

After being together for over 15 years, Robin Roberts and Amber Laign decided to take the next step in their relationship. During COVID-19-related lockdowns in 2020, Roberts and Laign found that they had some extra time to discuss these next steps, as well as how they might want to spend the rest of their lives together. At the end of 2022, around New Year's, the couple announced their engagement.

According to "Good Morning America," the couple made their decision over dinner in Connecticut while eating calamari. "We took the calamari rings and we slapped them on each other's fingers and we just proposed to one another," Roberts explained. This unconventional marriage proposal not only made for an interesting story, but it was also emblematic of a couple who has experienced life together on their own terms and created their own traditions. "It was pretty fitting for us to not have a down-on-one-knee [proposal] and one person doing it," Roberts also said. "It was just us hanging out in our little hole-in-the-wall Mexican spot and putting calamari rings on each other and saying, 'Let's go. Let's do it.'"

The couple tied the knot in September 2023

Less than a year after they announced their engagement, Robin Roberts and Amber Laign officially tied the knot. They were married on September 8, 2023, with their nuptials taking place among close friends and family. Just as their marriage proposal was low-key, the wedding itself was small and took place in their backyard. Yet the modest size and location didn't make the wedding any less beautiful. As "Good Morning America" reported, Roberts and Laign each wore wedding gowns made by custom designers, and they even hired a violinist to play "Can You Feel the Love Tonight." Prior to their wedding, Roberts said, "Many people go into marriage hoping for and looking for what Amber and I already know we have, and so ours is a celebration." She added, "We've been living our happily ever after through all the ups and downs, so it's a celebration." 

After the wedding, Roberts and Laign spent time in Curacao for their honeymoon. Roberts also reportedly posted a few pictures of the couple's honeymoon on Instagram. The U.S. Sun quoted Roberts as writing, "Following our wonderful wedding celebration full of dancing galore ... [it] felt so good to wiggle our toes in the sand during our magical honeymoon in beautiful Curacao!" For reference, Curacao is a small island nation located near Aruba and Bonaire, and it is primarily known for its beaches and snorkeling. 

Robin Roberts and Amber Laign continue to raise awareness about cancer together

Robin Roberts and Amber Laign are both cancer survivors. While Roberts previously battled breast cancer and MDS, Laign also developed breast cancer several years after her partner. Not only did their separate cancer experiences test and strengthen their relationship, but Roberts and Laign have since made it their mission to continue raising awareness about cancer together.

MDS, a rare type of blood cancer, profoundly impacted Roberts beyond her own diagnosis. While her sister was a bone marrow match, not everyone with the cancer is able to be matched up with a donor. For this reason, Roberts made it her mission to raise awareness about the lack of bone marrow donors, and she has since advocated for "Be the Match," a registry of donors for those in need of a bone marrow transplant. "I am grateful that my mama taught me [to] make your mess your message and that I have been able to find the meaning behind why this was placed in my path," Roberts said in a 2023 interview with WABC-TV.