In answer to a Los Angeles Times query Monday, the couple issued a joint statement saying: “After a great deal of thought, reflection, discussion and prayer, we came to this decision together. At this time, we are living apart while we work on the future of our relationship.”
The 55-year-old Shriver has moved out of their Brentwood mansion, but the statement stressed they continue to raise their four children — ages 21, 20, 18 and 14 — together, calling them “the light and the center of both of our lives.” And the pair appealed for privacy.
The romance began after the couple met at a celebrity tennis tournament 34 years ago. It appeared to endure some rough patches, including accusations of groping women against Schwarzenegger during his 2003 campaign for governor. At the time the actor apologized for inappropriate behavior and Shriver defended him.
The 63-year-old Republican left office in January, politically bruised from confrontations with legislators and with members of his own party over his lack of conservative convictions. His hints of an interest in working on environmental issues, possibly for the Obama administration, were not picked up. Shriver drew widespread praise for her roles as the state’s first lady and activist in women’s causes and health issues.
This spring, Schwarzenegger said he hoped for a cinematic comeback and he has since signed for three films, including another Terminator chapter.