Xposé host Cassie Stokes has confirmed her split with girlfriend of two years, Kathleen Gauvin.
The 30-year-old, who has been at the helm of the entertainment show for much of the last year during her colleagues Karen Koster and Glenda Gilson's maternity leave, said she was "sad to close the chapter" of their relationship, which has spanned nearly six years and two continents. The pair previously dated for more than three years when Stokes lived in Canada, but her move back to Ireland in 2016 forced them apart.
One year later, in 2017, Kathleen had taken the plunge and moved to Dublin, before their relationship ended late last year. The presenter confirmed the news on Instagram after a Sunday newspaper first reported news of their break-up.
"She said yes... To taking some time apart," she captioned a picture of them taken at last year's Dublin Pride march. "Sad to close this chapter, but life is about turning pages and enjoying everything in between."
Cassie has previously spoken about her compatibility with Kathleen, a medical underwriter, saying: "The secret to a good relationship is probably just being happy with yourself and keeping yourself happy as well. If someone is going to make you unhappy, don't do it. We work well together."
As one of Ireland's most high profile gay presenters, she previously said she is regularly contacted by people, particularly teenagers, looking for advice.
"What a privileged position to be in. I try to reply to everyone, which is hard sometimes," she said. "I love seeing gay couples walking hand-in-hand around Ireland. Why shouldn't they?"
Last year, she spoke about t her own experience of coming out at the age of 25 after she moving to Toronto.
“In Toronto, I realised I was gay. When I was away and meeting new people, I got to be ‘Cassie in Toronto’, who was the real me; not the person I moulded myself to be in Ireland," she told Independent.ie Style in 2017. "I wasn’t trying to live up to anything and also I realised, ‘actually I think I’m gay’. The move helped me with that,” she explains.
“The move gave me strength to do that and it also helped me professionally. That massive decision of moving away to begin with helped change me into the person I am now. The biggest positive for me was getting to know me, there was a little someone inside me and I got to meet that person. I was a more confident version of the person I always had been: I wasn’t a completely different person, but I am much happier and more comfortable in my own skin. It was always there, I just didn’t realise it was."