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shania twain forbes 30/50 summit© Getty Images

Shania Twain discusses cheating ex-husband's 'great mistake' after affair with her best friend

The singer was married to Robert 'Mutt' Lange for 15 years

Jenni McKnight
US Lifestyle Editor
May 29, 2024
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Shania Twain is happily married to her second husband, Frédéric Thiébaud, but she will never "forget" her ex-husband's affair with her former best friend.

The 58-year-old was married to Robert 'Mutt' Lange for 15 years before they split in 2008 after his infidelity with Marie-Anne Thiébaud was revealed. 

Robert is now married to Marie-Anne, who happens to be the ex-wife of Shania's husband Frédéric, whom she married six months after her divorce from Robert. 

In a new interview, Shania reflected on her past relationship with Robert, admitting that despite his cheating, he deserves "empathy and understanding".

shania twain and robert lange 2000© Getty Images
Shania with her ex-husband Robert 'Mutt' Lange

"Forgiveness is in the family of letting go. But forgiveness, more specifically for me anyway, is not about forgetting necessarily," she said on Jamie Laing's Great Company podcast when asked about her experience with Robert. 

She added: "It's about understanding the other person, and that might mean that they're wrong."

Shania then compared her ex-husband's infidelity to her relationship with her biological father, who reportedly left her when she was two years old, explaining that she could forgive him because she understands he "wasn't well". 

She continued: "Maybe you believe forever that whatever they did was wrong. Or maybe you believe that... Like my father's a better example, okay, because this is someone that I totally forgive. 

shania twain and robert lange 2005© Getty Images
Shania and Robert were married for 15 years

"But I understand that he wasn't well, that you don't act certain ways unless there's something wrong with you. 

"I feel bad that he had those problems. So, it's very hard to hate or not be able to forgive somebody that you believe." 

Shania Twain and Frederic Thiebaud at the 2023 CMT Music Awards held at Moody Center on April 2, 2023 in Austin, Texas© Getty
Shania is now married to Frederic Thiebaud

Turning the conversation back to Robert, Shania said: "He's a human being that deserves empathy and understanding. I think we all do, you know." 

However, Shania will no longer be weighed down by Robert's "great mistake" in turning to her best friend. 

Mutt Lange is seen on March 16, 2005 in Los Angeles, California© Getty
Robert is still married to Shania's former best friend

"So, do I hate my ex -husband for making a mistake? No. It's his mistake. Not my mistake," she admitted. 

"So sad for him that he made such a great mistake that he has to live with. And I don't know what that is, but it's not. That's not my weight." 

Shania Twain and Frederic Thiebaud attend the 2019 American Music Awards at Microsoft Theater on November 24, 2019 in Los Angeles, California© Getty
Shania and Frédéric married in Puerto Rico in 2011

Shania discovered her husband's affair with her former best friend the day after he asked for a divorce. 

"I had a total panic attack. I just told her that she was a bad person – that's all I could get out!" she previously said. 

"When I left her, I thought, 'You're such a wimp, you coward!'" 

Shania Twain attends The BRIT Awards 2023© Getty Images
Shania was devastated by her ex's infidelity

Shania and Robert's relationship has been strained ever since, and she admitted that they only communicate via text if it's about their son, Eja, 22. 

shania twain son eja© Instagram
Shania and Robert's son Eja

"Mutt and I parent well together – for people who don't talk to each other. We'll just text," she once said on Dax Shepard's Armchair Expert podcast

"We both love our son so much, so we don't play any games like that. We have the same priority; we share spaces for him. No nonsense there."

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