Amy Grant and Vince Gill Say Daughter 'Provided a Sense of Glue'

01/09/2010 at 08:00 PM ET
Courtesy Good Housekeeping

In the February issue of Good Housekeeping magazine, singers Amy Grant and Vince Gill open up about life as a blended family of seven.

Both entered their 2000 nuptials as parents — Amy to Matthew, 22, Millie, 20 and Sarah, 17; Vince to Jennifer, 27 — but it is their only child together, 8 ½-year-old Corinna, that has united the extended brood.

“[Corinna’s birth was] a great blessing for us,” Vince says.

“All of a sudden, we all had something in common. And we didn’t know it at the time, but it really provided a sense of glue.”

The timing of their union raised eyebrows, especially amongst Amy’s Christian fan base, but the 49-year-old songstress says she had bigger priorities.

“I don’t mean this in a flippant way, but I was so unconcerned by what somebody who I would never meet wrote in a rag,” she explains. “I felt like I had flipped a car over three medians and I was trying to figure out if my children — if we all — still had a pulse.”

And while Matthew, Millie, Sarah and Jennifer were all breathing, it couldn’t be said that they were doing well, either. “There have been a lot of hands-down, pivotal turning points, with a lot of words and tons of emotions,” Amy admits before adding,

“It was a long haul to feel like a family again. The parents have made a choice, but none of the kids have made the choice. And wherever it’s going to wind up, you’re not going to get there quickly. You just have to give people their space.”

Similarly, the couple make it a point to acknowledge the importance of their respective pasts. “The one thing we never tried to do is to say that life began for us the moment that we said ‘I do,'” Amy reveals. “A whole lot of life had gone before that, and it was worth, in time, integrating in a healthy way.”

Source: Good Housekeeping; February issue

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 29 comments

urbanadventurertales on

I’ve been a fan of Amy Grant for almost 20 years now! I love her view on blended families and find it refreshing!

Crystal S. on

I love this couple. It is great that they are so happy. Almost ten years married and they are still going strong. Excellent!

Saoradh on

I know her three eldest found it extremly hard to cope with all the changes though, and I sometimes wonder aboout parents who push forward in in their new relationships regardless. I think your first responsibility should be to your kids, you own personal happiness has to come secondary to that,or later when your kids have left the nest

lisa on

I love Vince!! He seems so humble.I like them together..good to see then discussing blended families since that is majority of todays family.

Luna on

Everytime I hear about a celebrity having such a great view towards blended families and how to cope with the new step children and how to live etc., it makes me feel like there are still people out there who aren’t media obsessed and crazy. Kudos to a great blended family!

Laura on

I’m so happy for them! I know it was hard on the kids, but in the end I think it was for the best.

ObamaRocks on

I hope you are not blaming Amy for the problems her kids had.
After all she was a saint staying married as long as she did to Mr Chapman with all his drinking and drug use, cheating and hitting her.

She was even a saint when she refused to reveal all that when she was bashed for being unChristian and a cheater.

The only one to blame was Mr Chapman

Julie on

No offense to anyone but I could never agree that a parent’s personal happiness should always come second to their kids. If a parent is miserable in their life, their kids are going to be unhappy as well, that’s just the way it is. Parents need to take care of themselves so that they are emotionally able to be there for their children. Constantly sacrificing yourself for the sake of your kids is inevitably going to backfire. And yes sometimes there is a no win situation where no matter what the parent does, their children will suffer, and that’s bad all around but guess what? It’s not the end of the world, people get through it – it’s called life.

Congrats to Amy and Vince for following their hearts and not letting others tell them what is right for their family.

annalee on

I don’t know that I would say Amy has much of a “Christian fan base.” She seems to have sold out years ago.

Mia on

Good for them. I think that even though kids should be top priority, I think people who are parents tend to totally ignore their own needs as well, and I don’t think that’s healthy either. I don’t think any parent should be miserable for the sake of their children, especially in such a positive thing as love.

JustMe on

I agree Saoradh… Love Vince Gill’s voice, was a fan, but just can’t hear him or see him without thinking of how they were so selfish

Catey on

When my Mum remarried, I was selfishly unhappy and made life quite difficult.

Now 10 years down the track, I adore my step-father and recognise the joy that he brings my mother.

My mother recognised that my dislike of him was more about me thinking I was loosing my mother than about my step-father and through some really great work as a family, we are now all incredibly happy.

If my mother was to ‘put us first’, I would not have the wonderful role model that is my step father in my life. I think it is ridiculous to expect parents to be unhappy because their children (who, by definition, act childishly) have thrown a tantrum.

Saoradh on

Thanks JustMe, of course I think parents should take care of themselves and make time for themselves. But when you choose to have children your primary responsibility is to make sure they are happy and feel secure. This was not the case with the Grant kids; their mom leaves their dad and 6 months after the divorce is through they have a new step-dad in their home. “Following your heart” as Julie puts it, is only admirable when you dont emotionally hurt the little ones in your care

meghan on

Most children struggle with their parents remarrying. But if they have loving parents to help them weather the changes, they will come through things just fine. I don’t see why falling in love again is a selfish thing. You get divorced, so you have to live the rest of your life alone to make your kids feel better?

Di on

Knowing that Amy and Vince bonded while still married to others put their relationship in a negative light. We live in “me” generation where people often put their own needs, wants and desires above everything else.

I keep reading about how Amy deserves to find love and happiness but no concern as to how the two divorces affected the children. Children are incredibly resilient and with time can adapt to a new situation so I’m not surprised if everyone is doing well now 10 years later but the timing was all wrong in my opinion.
Amy divorces her husband in 1999 and marries Vince in 2000- talk about rushing into marriage but given the fact that they were involved before their divorces, they probably felt there was no reason to wait.

Just like there are people who will always believe Brad did not cheat on Jennifer with Angelina, people will say the same things about Vince and Amy. Some people do not consider having an “emotional” affair cheating.

eva on

Children can learn valuable lessons from adapting and accepting a step-parent or a step-sibling into their lives.I was “miserable” when my father married my step-mother and gave everyone a hard time about it at first.But I’m glad my father saw beyond my immediate “misery” and told me that as long as my step-mother treated me with respect and was willing to be a positive part of my life he would not change her or dump her because of my issues.His decision helped me mature quickly and soon I began to consider the happiness of others together with my own.My father loved and loves her still.She was never cruel,neglectful or vindictive towards any of us.I think that is not being selfish,is being reasonable.Happiness is found and practiced,not given.

I will do the same should I ever re-marry.As long as my new partner is respectful,supportive and willing to know my child, and eventually be a constant part of her life, I will stay by the person I love no matter how much she sulks and screams.I hope she doesn’t.I hope she is a better little girl than her mama ever was.If she gives me hell about it I will offer a new perspective: we learn to tolerate and handle the world around us,try to get to know people and be patient.I would not choose a man for myself who was not a positive role model for her or treated her unkindly.This is because I love her and her safety and peace at home are my prioirity.However,we are also a family.If she is reluctant at first to meet a man I love and acts up because she is “miserable”,I will give her time and acknowledge the huge changes around her.I will support her every step of the way until she is comfortable and learns to construct her own happiness, but I will not give up on my second shot at love just because she decided not to like my partner.Under that retionale no divorced or widowed parent would evern marry or date again.

CelebBabyLover on

Di- You’re right, some people don’t conisder an emotinal affair to be cheating. It doesn’t mean that those people are right, or that people who DO think an emotinal affair is cheating are wrong. People simply have different beliefs. So some people will always believe those two couples DID cheat, and others will always believe they DIDN’T cheat (and obviously some people will fall somewhere in the middle).

As for Amy and Vince….If Amy’s ex-husband really was as bad as ObamaRocks described, I can’t believe anyone thinks she should have stayed with him just to make the kids happy. Then again, maybe that wasn’t what people were getting at, and if indeed it wasn’t, I apologize!

QT on

Sorry I don’t believe it was just emotional affairs. But how was Amy a saint for cheating on her kids & husband with a married man & not blaming him for it? What “horrible” things did Vince’s wife do to deserve such treatment ObamaRocks?

diana on

hmmmm…. this is tough.

i guess i think that marrying husband #2 6 months after ditching husband #1 is just too quick…. it compounds the grief over the loss of the original family with all the grief/anxiety around the formation of a new family (with a dad and siblings you get no say over). I’d say that is a bit traumatic and, without knowing the actual circumstances, it would have been better if they could have just cooled their relationship for a year or two for the kids.

that said, i love this interview because it just feels really honest…

Sarah on

seriously, QT and ObamaRocks…neither of you have met these people so how do you know? I think we should just take it as it is…two people in love, making a blended family work.

NotGodsonojudgmenthere on

Why are people so quick to pass judgment? Relationships look different to the people who are actually in them. None of us know what really went on between Amy and Gary, Amy and Vince, and Vince and his wife. Instead of dwelling on the past we should all be happy for them that the kids and the family are doing so well and are happy.

CK on

I do not think that any of us are in a position to judge anyone–regardless of whether they are a celebrity or not. What happened years ago happened and Amy made her own decisions based on what she thought was right for her and her children. The children may have not responded well at first but it seems that things are lot better now than they were back then, so good for them. I wish Amy and Vince lots of love, health, and happiness for years to come.

If you can’t say something nice then don’t say anything at all.

Ashley on

In the past few months I’ve seen Vince a couple of times, and both times I teared up when he talked about his love for Amy as he dedicated “Whenever You Come Around” to her. Maybe their actions at the time seemed a little rushed (I remember the scandal), but after 10 years, he still glows when he mentions her name. I know it wasn’t easy on the both of them or their children, but I doubt any of them are still placing blame when their happiness is so evident.

CelebBabyLover on

NotGodsonojudgmenthere- Very well said! 🙂

moose on

Honestly I hear so many mothers say things like “you have to be happy for your kids to be happy and so on”. I think its because so many of us have to work so we justify that because of financial needs or because our careers are interesting etc…but in my opinion (and I am NOT proposing everyone beinga stay-at home parent) its gone too far the other way these days. Parents leaving newborns with grandma to go off and have romantic long weekends, single mothers dating like teenagers, I think we are all about me me me me these days. Kids can adjust but these are MONUMENTAL adjustments and I don’t care if I met the love of my life..if really was the love of my life he could wait a bit longer than 6 months aftre my divorce to move in with me. That said, I am not saying Amy and Vince are bad people…I think love makes most people go a bit crazy. I just think in mnay respects my generation of mothers DOES need to stop, slow down and think about the children a bit more.

penguinlover on

Catey and Eva…THANK YOU for your quotes on blended families. After being abused for 15 years “for my children’s sakes”, I finally got the courage to leave my ex-husband. I don’t know how anyone can ever say that is better for my children than the wonderful step-father that has been given to us (he truly is a gift from God, as are his two children). Our blended family has seen bumps from my stepchildren, but my children embraced our new family as I did. Imagine that….my children acted as I did. Now, 6 years later, we are all getting along fine. Never perfectly, but we are a family in our own way, and we spend a lot of time together. I now have a grand-daughter that I wouldn’t have had if I hadn’t married my husband, and I couldn’t love her more if she were my own.

As for their “affairs”, that is for them to know and us to stay out of it. It is not our place to pass judgement. They and their children are all happy and well-adjusted. As for the “pain and suffering” that their respective children had to endure due to their “selfishness”…has any of you considered that their children were teenagers and that is how they are supposed to act when they don’t get their own way? I’m sure if anyone asked them today, the children would all say that they love their step-siblings, half sibling, and step-parents very much.

dfgdfgd on

I would never judge Amy or Vince for leaving their marriages. None of us know what really went on in those marriages. It may have been better for them to leave. However, after your children have been through the upheaval of separation and divorce, getting married si months later just doesn’t sound like the best idea. What’s wrong with dating for a couple years?

Laura on

I believe the reason they married so quickly was they wanted to see if they could get pregnant. Amy was 40 or appoaching it and didn’t even know if it was possible to get pregant. i also think both Amy and Vince were separated awhile from their spouses before it became public knowledge that their was marital problems. So the timing of their marriage may seem sooner than it actually was. i have been a fan of Amy for 10+ years and when you see pictures of her from when she was married to Gary she looked miserable, there was no light in her eyes. And with Vince she looks so much happier. And her and Vince have always had chemistry or something that her and Gary never had. No one will ever know what really went on in their marriages, but life is messy whether you are Christian or not and I don’t think we should judge without knowing all the facts.

Lori on

Laura, I agree fully with you. Sadly, I believe that so much judging has come from the Christian side of things. I am a believer in Jesus and love Him with everything I am, I too have been divorced and judged severely. We as believers are to lift one another up, to speak “into” peoples lives not about peoples lives. Amy has been thru more than anyone knows, and really is none of their business…Amy’s heart is a lover of Jesus first and foremost and she loves her family and children…like the rest of us…she makes mistakes, but not without learning from them. I believe that Amy and Vince and a couple worth learning from…they are beautiful to watch and wonderful examples. Christians a note to you, watch your tongue, it is WRONG to talk about and gossip, it is wrong to bring down the body…your place is in prayer and on your knees NOT on the phone! In order for people to really know how Jesus loves…we need to love the same way. Jesus hung out with the “low lifes”…he was criticized and hated for it…Get over yourselves and start loving people and quit embarrassing believers by your poor behavior!