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Kelsea Ballerini Reveals Timeline & Turning Points Of Her Marriage On "Call Her Daddy" Podcast

In easily some of her best work to date, Kelsea Ballerini's Rolling Up The Welcome Mat EP explores heavy territory as it details the tail end of her marriage to Morgan Evans. She's described it as her "healing journey," where she lays out her perspective and truth in the tumultuous, public situation. Since last week's drop of the reflective, personal project, fans realized just how much hurt she was hiding during these last few years. Kelsea followed this release with an appearance on Alex Cooper's Call Her Daddy podcast, which revealed even more about the couple's conflicts and ultimate separation.

Kelsea watched her parents' messy divorce as a child - an event that inspired her 2015 deep cut "Secondhand Smoke" - and swore for the longest time that she wouldn't fall into the same pattern. “Being an only child, watching that, walking through that at 12, 13, those impressionable ages, I was just like, ‘I’m not doing it,'” Kelsea shared. Initially, she hesitated on getting married in the first place.

After dating Morgan Evans, however, she tried to convince herself otherwise. "I take full responsibility for that narrative," she admitted. "I just wanted everyone to have a nice time. I didn’t want to have a wedding."

Alex noted the whirlwind nature of the couple's romance, emphasizing that they got married in the "honeymoon stage" of their relationship. The two never really seemed to be on the same page, but Kelsea found herself "overcompensating." Kelsea noted her people-pleasing tendencies, and over time grew resentful, as she felt that she was the only one contributing to their relationship. After all, she paid for their house and most of his flights to see her, the last of which he didn't even board.

Their fundamental differences often took a toll on their relationship, causing several instances where she would sleep on the couch. Kelsea details one such episode in her song "Blindsided," which happened right before the 2019 CMAs where she performed "homecoming queen?"

The question of children seemed to be a major turning point, as Morgan grew enraged at the thought of Kelsea freezing her eggs. He was ready to have kids, but she wasn't. "I’m not there yet, and I can’t do that to save this [marriage] and give you something that I’m not ready for. I just can’t do that to myself," Kelsea recalled telling him.

One of the biggest takeaways of Kelsea and Alex's conversation was the events after the couple made their separation public. After Morgan dropped his song about her, "Over For You," even before the divorce was officially settled, she admitted that she felt "angry" and "used."

"I had a pretty good grasp on my grieving journey until that song came out — and I was livid," said Kelsea. "His healing journey is his healing journey. I respect that, but publicly exploiting that feels a little nasty to me before it’s final."

Kelsea's navigation of post-divorce life and current state of happiness comes from prioritizing herself. "I think he loved me more at 23, and I loved him more at 29," she explained. Her career-defining record SUBJECT TO CHANGE, which came out in September of last year, explores platonic bonds, growth, reaching contentment, and most importantly showing up for herself. She leaned on her tight-knit group of friends, who re-taught her what it means to love and be there for someone.

Image credit: CMT

While focusing on her career, she lived out the meaning of her fan-favorite song "DOIN' MY BEST." We're so happy that Kelsea found peace in the end, and feels ready to share her story. She's the strongest and bravest, as well as the biggest inspiration that country music could ask for. We love you Kels!

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