UPDATED: Those “Johnny-come-lately”s at People magazine think they have the scoop today on "Survivor" and “The Facts of Life” star LISA WHELCHEL’s secret divorce. But don’t be fooled! The ENQUIRER broke this story exclusively in our new print edition, which began hitting newsstands two days earlier!
“SURVIVOR” castaway LISA WHELCHEL secretly divorced her husband earlier this year after suffering in a loveless marriage for more than two decades, The ENQUIRER reports exclsuively!
But despite the hush-hush court proceedings, the former child star – who played spoiled little rich girl Blair Warner on the hit ’80s sitcom “The Facts of Life” – has never been able to keep her negative feelings about her ex-hubby quiet!
For years, the 49-year-old actress has posted hurtful information about former husband Steve Cauble, 62, on Internet blogs.
And although he begged her to stop, Lisa refused to take the posts down – until she decided to petition for a spot on “Survivor: Philippines”!
“Lisa puts on a smiling face in public, but in reality she has a dark side,” a source told The ENQUIRER.
In one post, says the source, Lisa joked about Steve falling off the roof of their home while trying to hang Christmas decorations.
“After Steve fell, Lisa quickly ran inside to call 911, but she also grabbed her camera. When she came back outside, she started clicking away while Steve was lying there in agony and moaning in pain.
“Lisa took the photos, posted them on her blog and even wrote the headline: ‘When Daddy fell off the roof!’
“Lisa also posted a picture of their daughters, Clancy and Haven, standing over their father, obviously upset. But she was too busy taking photos to console her kids or Steve. He was hurt both physically and emotionally.”
Lisa, a born-again Christian, was just 25 when her father decided it was time for her to get married. He even chose Steve, the much-older associate pastor of their church, to be her suitor.
In her 2001 book, “The Facts of Life,” Lisa wrote that she felt pressured to marry Steve after their engagement was announced in front of the entire congregation – even though she says she hadn’t accepted any of his proposals. Feeling she had no way out, Lisa went through with the wedding, despite admitting she was never attracted to Steve. They tied the knot just two months after her hit TV show ended in 1988.
The family moved to Lantana, Texas, from Sherman Oaks, Calif., in 2006.
“Lisa and Steve’s marriage was doomed even before they said their ‘I do’s’ and it just got worse as time went by,” said a family friend.
“Over the years, she realized she never loved Steve the way she should have as his wife and it affected the way she treated him.”
Lisa finally filed for divorce in Denton County, Texas, in December 2011. But in a strange twist, the records have been sealed and only a handful of the couple’s closest friends and family members even know about the split!
While no public records of the divorce exist, The ENQUIRER obtained property documents which show that the couple started the process to change the ownership status of their marital home in December 2011.
And in May, the deed for a home Steve bought in north Dallas shows he made the purchase as a “single man.” Lisa currently lives in a three-bedroom apartment only a few minutes away.
“Their divorce has been in the works for years,” added the family insider.“Lisa waited to file until their youngest child turned 19 and went away to college.
“It was a quick, non-contested divorce, and it took only months to finalize.”
The 25th season of “Survivor” kicked off on Sept. 19, and Lisa has said it was the hardest thing she’s ever done – and that she wouldn’t do it again!
“She’s hoping that being on the show will kick-start her career,” added the insider. “She wants to move back to L.A. full time – as a single woman – and get back into acting.”