According to Ryan Phillippe, age may not be just a number after all. Although the couple split several years back, he only recently cited his and Reese Witherspoon’s young age at the time of their marriage as one of the contributing factors to their divorce. Prior to this confession, Phillippe had been notably quiet about the subject of his divorce.

Illinois movie-goers may recall the film “Cruel Intentions” that Phillippe and Witherspoon starred in together. Later that same year, they said “I do,” and a short while later welcomed a daughter into their lives. At the time, they were both still in their early to mid 20s. Several years later, the couple had a son.

Not long after, rumors of cheating began to swirl around their marriage, and Phillippe officially separated from Witherspoon in 2006. Roughly two years later, the couple finalized their divorce. When asked in an interview if the Hollywood and celebrity lifestyle was the root cause of their divorce, Phillippe said that their young age was really to blame. Although the two are still good friends with one another, both have moved on to new partners and have each had one more child.

While some younger couples are able to weather through the turbulent 20s, age certainly can be a deciding factor in a divorce for many people in Illinois.  However, no matter the reason, most couples will have to deal with the same types of issues, including alimony, property division and child custody if they have any children. Exactly how to handle these issues is based on the couple’s unique needs, which can help determine whether mediation or a collaborative divorce process is appropriate, or if heading to court to litigate unresolved issues may be more beneficial.

Source: Los Angeles Times, “Ryan Phillippe blames divorce from Reese Witherspoon on youthfulness“, Nardine Saad, March 20, 2015