1. People & Relationships

Rosie & Kelli O'Donnell

By

Who are Rosie O'Donnell & Kelli Carpenter? Rosie O'Donnell is a comedian, talk show host, actress and lesbian mom activist. Her ex-partner is Kelli Carpenter.
Kelli Carpenter and Rosie O'Donnell

Kelli Carpenter and Rosie O'Donnell

© Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images

How did they meet?

Rosie and Kelli met in 1998. They were set up on their first date and went to a restaurant in New York City. In an interview with The Advocate Kelli says she was hesitant to go on the date because she was wary of Rosie's fame. But "Then we talked, and she was one of the smartest people I've ever spoken to."

Marriage

Rosie and Kelli O'Donnell were married in San Francisco on February 26, 2004. Part of the reason they married was because they were not able to use "spousal privilege" in Rosie's lawsuit with her former magazine publisher. "We applied for spousal privilege and were denied it by the state. As a result, everything that I said to Kelli, every letter that I wrote her, every e-mail, every correspondence and conversation was entered into the record," O'Donnell said. "After the trial, I am now and will forever be a total proponent of gay marriage."

Children

Rosie and Kelli have four children, three adopted and one that Kelli gave birth to. Their names are Parker, Chelsea, Blake and Vivienne.

Rosie and Kelli Split Up

Although Rosie and Kelli O'Donnell split up and are no longer living together, the two have put their children first and remain committed parents. Rosie O'Donnell was quotes as saying "We will both continue to parent them and we're friendly and everything's all right."

R Family Vacations

In 2006 Rosie, Kelli and Gregg Kaminsky founded R Family Vacations, and launched it with a cruise. HBO made a documentary of the trip All Aboard! Rosie's Family Cruise.

Rosie O'Donnell & Kelli Carpenter Love Quotes

When asked what first attracted her to Kelli, Rosie said, "Look at her! It was her eyes! When I met her, I thought, Oh, my God, look at those green eyes!...And she was smart and fun and adorable."

Asked how they keep their love alive, they answered, "Date nights." Rosie says, "Believe me, four children, it's hard. You have to work to keep your relationship vibrant and alive."

Kelli said, "Getting married meant so much more to me emotionally than ever thought it would. Rosie and I have been together for over six years and now have four children, so we made the decision to go to San Francisco in order to make a political statement. I was not prepared for how moved I would be during the vows and the power of saying them out loud."

Sources: The Advocate, March 28, 2006, CNN, abc news

  1. About.com
  2. People & Relationships
  3. Lesbian Life

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.