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Ex-husband and I just focus on the children – model Vivienne

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Vivienne Connolly and ex-husband Mark Dunne. Photo: Frank Mc Grath

Vivienne Connolly and ex-husband Mark Dunne. Photo: Frank Mc Grath

Vivienne Connolly and ex-husband Mark Dunne. Photo: Frank Mc Grath

MODEL Vivienne Connolly has told how she is moving on after the breakdown of her marriage – but has to constantly reassure her children.

She says that both herself and ex-husband Mark Dunne have new partners but their kids remain the number one priority.

Actress Vivienne (41) said that she and Mark have put any differences behind them to focus on raising their children Ben (8) and Katie (6).

Vivienne is dating TV producer John Norton and said that she wants nothing but happiness for Mark and his new love Gaby Rivas.

"Mark is a great guy," Vivienne said.

"When we were splitting up, I said 'I wish you well'. He deserves to be happy."

When Vivienne met John last May, she said that her main concern was her children.

"There is so much more at stake when there are children involved," she said.

But although it was an emotional break-up, they now have an amicable relationship and the Dunnes Stores mogul picks up Katie and Ben three mornings a week and they stay with him every second weekend.

"As new partners were being introduced – Mark has a girlfriend and I have a boyfriend – the kids were sat down and reassured," Vivienne said in an interview with the Sunday Independent.

"We give them reassurance all the time: that they have only got one mum and one dad, and nobody is ever going to replace that.

"Mark's girlfriend is not trying to be their mother and my boyfriend is not trying to be their father."

Vivienne and Mark tied the knot in 2005 in Ashford Castle but their marriage came to an end in 2010 and they were legally separated in April 2011.

The Fair City star said that it took a while to realise that her marriage was on the rocks.

"Mark is a lovely guy. He really is. And that is the biggest part of the regret for me.

"I questioned myself," she said. "You know, this guy is lovely and brilliant and a great dad and a great husband – and it still wasn't working out.

"So I learned to respect that person as an individual and go, 'It isn't working between us' and move on.

"Any bitter words between each other really are only words and they are how you are feeling at that moment."

clairemurphy@herald.ie


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