The Truth About Julianne Hough And Brooks Laich's Relationship

No relationship is perfect, even for celebrities like Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich. Hough of Dancing With the Stars fame and her hockey player hubby appeared to be the epitome of a happy marriage. The two tied the knot during a fairy tale wedding in 2017, spent much of their free time jet-setting around the globe to glamorous destinations, and even became parents to a couple of pups. Which is why divorce rumors and news of their split in 2020, per OK! magazine, came as a surprise to fans. Hough and Laich had a pretty drama-free relationship — at least publicly — since they began dating back in 2013, as Entertainment Tonight reported. 

It was an instant connection, according to Hough, who told ET in 2016 that she knew Laich was "the one" from the get-go. "I mean, I've never really been the person to think about 'when you know you know.' But it was just kinda just that," Hough said.

Despite news of their split, it seems like the two are giving things another shot, according to Us Weekly. While their relationship status is complicated, there's still a lot to love about this power couple.

Julianne Hough was Brooks Laich's dream girl

Brooks Laich was already smitten by singer-actress-dancer Julianne Hough long before meeting her in 2013. Then Laich only knew her as that dreamy (and "sassy") girl in that Juicy Fruit commercial, which aired in 2008, as he shared on the Ed MyLett Show. Laich admitted to never having watched Dancing with the Stars, and told 106.7 The Fan (via E! News) that he later learned Hough never saw a Washington Capitals game either. When Laich's friend, The Flash star Teddy Sears mentioned that he was working on a movie with the Juicy Fruit girl, fate intervened. "I guess that was sort of how it started," Laich told the radio show, adding, "[Sears] kept mentioning her name and mentioning her name, eventually we connected. Happy we did."

After months of talking, Hough and Laich met in person at an airport for Sears' wedding reception in D.C., according to Laich's radio interview. Though Hough's movie with Sears never got released, she's happy she met her matchmaking co-star. "I'm convinced the only reason I was meant to do that movie was to meet my fiancé," Hough told Cosmopolitan. We're happy she did too.

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich were in a long-distance relationship from the get-go

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich relied on tech to get to know one another in the beginning of their relationship. "We talked on the phone and FaceTime for two months before we physically met each other," Laich told E! News about Hough, whom he met through a mutual friend. With 3,000 miles between them (Laich was in D.C. and Hough was in Los Angeles), it made it impossible to go out on physical dates, as Laich shared on the Ed MyLett Show. During that time, the two learned a lot about each other and found more similarities than differences. Laich was surprised to learn that Hough, whom he thought of as this "big city girl," loved outdoor living, including hiking and swimming. "That really at the start of the relationship perked my interest enough for me to call again," Laich said.

When they finally met in D.C., the two would take turns visiting one another. Of course, paparazzi went wild when the two were spotted on Hough's turf for the first time during a PDA-filled trip to Disneyland in early 2014, according to Us Weekly. The rest is history.

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich always supported each other's careers

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich survived the distance because they always supported each other's careers. Laich said as much to E! News in 2019. The pro hockey player-turned-podcast host shared that more than three years of their relationship was spent living apart; Laich traveled the country with his hockey team while his sweetheart Hough starred on Dancing With the Stars in Los Angeles. "Our relationship was long distance, but we always wanted to celebrate and support that the other person was living their dream, so I never told my wife, 'You have to move here and support me while I play hockey' and she said, 'You never have to give up hockey to come here,'" Laich said. 

Hough told Entertainment Tonight that it helped to learn about each other's professions. "I think that's how we support, like, going to each other's games or performances, and talking about it afterwards," Hough said.

Despite their busy schedules, they made each other a priority and survived the distance. Eventually, Laich moved to Los Angeles permanently to live with Hough.

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich liked to keep things hot and steamy

From the beginning of their relationship, Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich couldn't keep their hands off each other. The duo was first caught by paparazzi on a PDA-filled visit in Los Angeles  back in 2014 (per E! News). A couple of years later, as husband and wife, they were spotted making out at a picnic for two, as reported by the Daily Mail. Despite having spent the majority of their early years together long-distance, these two found creative ways to keep things hot and steamy while together and apart.

In 2016, Hough shared with Cosmopolitan that she and Laich try to have phone sex when they're not together. "But I'm really bad at it," she confessed, noting, "I'll get halfway through and start laughing. It's an art. I applaud people who are good at it. They need to come and help me keep a straight face!" 

Brooks Laich proposed to Julianne Hough in the sweetest way

When Brooks Laich proposed to Julianne Hough in 2015, it was far from a Hollywood movie spectacle. The pro hockey player got down on one knee and asked his dancing queen to be his wife at a cozy lake house. The happy couple announced the engagement on Instagram with a photo of a casually dressed Hough embracing Laich while staring excitedly at her ring. What did scream Hollywood, however, was Hough's ring. According to Us Weekly, Laich spared no expense and chose a custom Lorraine Schwartz six-carat diamond ring for his bride-to-be. He'd been reportedly working with the jeweler for eight months leading up to the proposal. 

Not long after getting engaged, Hough, who was still clearly on cloud nine, told People, "I'm just feeling so happy and blessed every moment of every day. My favorite thing about being engaged is just a sense of warmth and just joy." 

Julianne Hough's brother approved of her relationship with Brooks Laich

Julianne Hough and her brother Derek are one of Hollywood's most famous siblings and probably the best dancers in the mix. After all, they've competed together in dance competitions since they were kids (via People) before gaining fame on ABC's Dancing With the Stars. Given their unbreakable bond on and off the dance floor, you'd think Derek would've given Julianne Hough's beau, Brooks Laich, a tough time, but it wasn't like that at all. 

Following news of Julianne Hough's engagement, Derek Hough told People that he's never seen his sister happier. "I knew that it was happening within the first month they were dating," he said of the proposal. "It was one of those things where it was instant and that smile and glow she's had hasn't dimmed ever since she met [him]. That's a special thing." He also told the mag he's actually friends with his Laich. "We went surfing yesterday. We've been hanging out a lot," Derek noted. "He's a good guy." 

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich's wedding was an outdoor lover's dream

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich's Idaho wedding was a celebration of love and nature. The lovebirds tied the knot in 2017, during a beautiful outdoor wedding on Lake Coeur d'Alene, Idaho — the place Hough spent her childhood summers, according to People. "When I introduced Brooks to the lake, he fell in love with this special spot, and we knew this was where we wanted to raise our family and grow old together," Hough told the magazine. "It just felt right to be married here."

And right it was. The day was beautiful and sunny. The duo said, "I do," in front of close family and friends near the lake with a view of the mountains in the distance. According to People, it took more than 2,000 flowers to create the wedding's floral arrangements. To top it off, Hough and Laich made their getaway on a boat James Bond-style, as Hough shared in a video posted to YouTube. It was nothing short of magical.

Newlywed life only made Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich fall more in love

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich played the newlywed game right. Following their glamorous lake wedding in Idaho in 2017, this adventure-seeking duo spent their honeymoon in style. First, they donned swimsuit attire at a secluded island in the Indian Ocean, and they followed that by wearing khakis on their Kenyan safari, People reported. Judging by the photos the couple shared online, it looks like they had the honeymoon of a lifetime.

Laich gushed to People about newlywed life in 2018, following their wedding and honeymoon. "It's just the greatest thing ever to marry your best friend," Laich said during a charity event with his wife. "We thought we loved each other when we were engaged, and then marriage is a whole new level. It's just fun to see the love continually grow everyday." Hough — one of many celebs who look even more stunning without makeup — agreed, responding with, "Ditto! Ditto!" 

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich share an active lifestyle

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich love pushing their bodies to the limit. This is, after all, a couple who climbed the highest peak in Africa to celebrate a birthday. In 2019, Hough and Laich made the more than 19,000-foot hike up to Mount Kilimanjaro's peak for Hough's 31st birthday, Access reported. 

The athletic couple also managed to throw in a workout or two during their honeymoon in the Seychelles, as reported on by People. Yes, they're that couple. Laich shared with fans a few of their beach workout reps, including the "barbellJules," in which Laich used Hough's body as a weight. While most of us may never attempt any of these moves on our honeymoon, or anywhere for that matter, this couple sure set something for us to aspire to. Besides Laich's over ten years in the NHL, he's also a CrossFitter. Hough is not just a Dancing With the Stars judge, but also a longtime dancer and founder of Kinrgy, a new type of fitness workout. 

Julianne Hough felt closer to Brooks Laich after admitting this about her sexuality

As she and Brooks Laich grew more and more in love, Julianne Hough, who has undergone a stunning transformation, found the strength to come out to her husband as bisexual. "I [told him], 'You know I'm not straight, right?' And he was like, 'I'm sorry what?'" Hough told Women's Health in a 2019 interview. "I was like, 'I'm not. But I choose to be with you.'" As she's become her "most authentic self," Hough said she's felt like she and Laich have been able to have a "more intimate relationship." 

It appeared as though she even inspired Laich to explore his own sexuality; he said as much in his podcast, How Men Think (via E! News). However, he clarified that it had nothing to do with him being straight or gay. "I mean, like, in my sexual relationship. What is my sexuality?" he said. "What am I craving, what are my desires and what are my wife's?'"

On the heels of her Women's Health feature, Hough told ExtraTV she felt that Laich completely supports the woman she is and that they communicate well in their relationship.

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich have faced loss together

It's not easy when a loved one dies, never mind two. In 2019, Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich grieved the loss of their two dogs Lexi and Harley. Though the nature of their deaths wasn't specified, it's clear the loss of the Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, as noted by USA Today, was hard on the couple. According to Hough's Instagram post filled with photos and videos honoring the late dogs, they were 10 years old, give or take. "Thank you for your love," Hough wrote in the caption. "Thank you for being my babies, my daughters. Thank you for choosing me. Thank you for teaching me how to be your mother." 

Her hubby, Laich, also took to Instagram with a family photo of the four of them, and he shared a similar sentiment that their dogs were more than just pets and "were our children." 

Love eventually wasn't enough to keep Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich together as a couple

Nearly three years after tying the knot in 2017, Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich officially split in May of 2020, as reported by People. The couple released a joint statement to the magazine asking for "compassion and respect" during a difficult time, and they also mentioned that their split was amicable and that they still "share an abundance of love and respect for one another."

The split wasn't a complete surprise given that Laich and Hough were reportedly social distancing separately during the coronavirus outbreak — Laich in Idaho and Hough in Los Angeles, according to People.

Before news of their split, divorce rumors started circulating when Hough was spotted not wearing her wedding ring while co-hosting NBC's New Year's Eve and welcoming the year 2020. There was also a post shared on Laich's Instagram account in which he discussed his goals for the new year and added that he looked forward to "stepping into a new chapter in my life," though he was vague as to how Hough would play a role in that.

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich remained in each other's lives as friends

Despite splitting up, as reported in May 2020, Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich remained a part of each other's lives. During the summer of 2020, only a couple of months after the couple announced their separationLaich, along with Hough's famous friends like actress Nina Dobrev (yes, you can mark Dobrev and Hough down as celebs you didn't know were BFFs), helped Hough celebrate her 32nd birthday in Los Angeles. Dobrev captured the pool party festivities on her Instagram stories, as reported by People.

In one of the video clips, Hough is seen jumping over an inflatable pool arch and Laich himself, before successfully landing on another float. Why was Laich at Hough's pool party, especially when he was reportedly social distancing in Idaho? What does this mean for the exes? Well, a source reportedly told People that Laich is "definitely still open to getting back together with Julianne." Notably, Laich was also seen working out with Hough's brother Derek around the same time (via Entertainment Tonight).

It seems like time apart may be bringing Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich closer

Julianne Hough and Brooks Laich's relationship status is making our heads spin. Despite officially splitting up in May of 2020, the two can't seem to stay away from each other. While they've been seen hanging out with friends, they've also had quality time alone together. According to People, the exes were spotted vacationing in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho (the location of their wedding) in September 2020, four months following their split. 

We even spotted Hough getting cozy with her and Laich's Husky, Koda, on Instagram. It seems like Laich has main custody of the dog, who is often featured on the athlete's feed. The couple adopted the pup in 2018, per People. Both Hough and Laich have remained mum about one another on their social media feeds at the time of this writing, but maybe it's because they're still trying to figure out what they want. I guess we'll just have to wait and see if they end up together, but we're rooting for them!