Jesse Williams and his ex-wife are still hammering out the details of their divorce nearly four years after the Grey’s Anatomy star initially filed.
The actor and his ex-wife, Aryn Drake-Lee, are still battling it out in court over custody issues in their ongoing divorce, and now, a judge has ordered that both parties take a “high conflict” parenting course to improve some of the issues between them and their kids.
According to legal documents obtained by TMZ, the former couple has been ordered to participate in an online program for “high conflict parents.” This came after Jesse tried (and failed) to modify previous court orders regarding custody and visitation of their 2 young children, 7-year-old Sadie and Maceo, 5. While Williams and Drake-Lee have been sharing joint legal and physical custody over the past couple of years, things have been pretty rocky.
As for this parenting course, it is a 6-session online program that provides strategies for reducing conflicts in co-parenting relationships, which seems like a good course for most people co-parenting children with their ex. After he filed in 2017, Jesse and Aryn finalized their divorce back in October. Over the course of the past couple of years, throughout this messy split, the actor fought with Aryn over child custody, lashed out over stories about him dating Minka Kelly, and even waged a legal war over child support money. It seems like a course in courteous co-parenting could be a welcome change here.
Back in 2019, Aryn spoke to PEOPLE about how the tumultuous divorce was affecting her family and children.
“When you start spinning, the children start spinning, so even if you’re looking at them and you’re telling them everything is fine, they know it’s not fine because they can feel it’s not fine,” Drake-Lee explained.
“I talk to them on their level,” she added. “It’s also okay for the children to see me crying, to see that I’m having a hard day today. Because that lets them know that when they have those hard days, there’s also room for that.”
Williams is now dating Hit The Floor actress Taylor Paige. The two met in 2018 at the Emmys and apparently, it was love at first sight. During an interview for GQ’s Modern Lovers Issue, Jesse revealed that he’s doing things differently this time around by keeping his love life out of the media.
“Let’s be honest, I have a lot of press around my personal life,” Williams shared. “To go out is very likely to be photographed and declare something between me and another person who I’m just getting to know. I was very protective of not putting her through that and putting myself through that.”
Jesse admitted that it was hard opening up to Paige initially, but the actor added that he was committed to being “open” about their relationship despite his rocky divorce battle.
“I was having a wild, unfamiliar, uncomfortable experience because it was all just happening in a very spiritual way—a way that’s not how I usually arrange things in my life. But I’d been going through a lot of transitions in life, and I had deliberately positioned myself to be open to saying yes, to be available to whatever, more than I had in the past,” he continues. “I don’t often let things happen to me. But because I had decided I was going to be open, I didn’t pull the brake like I normally would. I didn’t try to control, or position, or take a breath, and I just went along for the ride, as scary as that was and has been. She blew in—”