Michael Strahan has been in the spotlight for many reasons aside from his sportsmanship. His dysfunctional relationship with his now ex-wife Jean Muggli ended up ruining his reputation and career. Things spun out of control with reports of violence, abuse, and scandals. During their divorce battle, Mugli revealed she found in Michael's bedroom a recording of Jean's own sister. He, in turn, allegedly bribed her with $30,000 to keep it all quiet. But are these facts truly what they seem? Let's take a deeper look at what exactly happened...
Inside Michael Strahan’s Crazy Life: Disturbing Allegations, Dating Rumors, and Being a FatherPublished 1 month ago
Michael Strahan had a deep love for overpriced bottles of shower gel and it forced him to make many trips to a skincare salon which happened to be where Jean Muggli worked. This is where their desire and attraction for each other started and grew. Unfortunately, their relationship was off to a rocky start and it only escalated. They were in two completely different worlds concerning careers.
Muggli grew up on a farm in North Dakota and was working in a skincare salon while Strahan was entering the height of his sporting career in a famous American Football team. Muggli knew that Strahan wanted to go on a date with her due to his constant visits to the shop, but she did question at some stage whether or not he might have just been a bit obsessed about his cleanliness.
The two had an instant connection, some might call it chemistry, but unfortunately, there are many aspects to a relationship and chemistry is not the only glue that binds it. Muggli seemed to understand Strahan better than he understood himself and it was through this instant understanding that their attraction and desire to be in a relationship grew. “But I learned very fast that he is not your typical macho kind of athlete,” is what Muggli commented in an interview.
However much they understood each other, when it comes to having one or both partners being famous in a relationship, this makes things a lot more complicated. Soon, the added pressure of being judged and the media's constant scrutiny began to affect them.
After an already rocky start to their relationship, Strahan and Muggli decided to get married. They said their "I do's" in 1999 with no consideration given to how their careers would be affected or adjusted. Both Strahan and Muggli kept their careers intact and even worked harder at becoming better in their field and expanding. They set up a prenuptial agreement which later became a driving force as well as caused one of them a great deal of loss.
Prenuptial agreements are set in place to protect assets as well as be the lightbulb moment when either party is about to make a huge mistake. In the case of Strahan and Muggli, their agreement seemed a little more extreme than some other celebrity prenuptial agreements, however, they saw it fit that Strahan would give 20 percent of his earnings to Muggli if they should get divorced.
Muggli gave birth to Sophia and Isabella, two beautiful twin girls in 2004. The girls brought them both great joy. It was stated that their twins might have been the only good thing to come from their dysfunctional relationship and marriage. One cannot help but wonder how some people stay together for so long only to experience such constant unhappiness as Strahan and Muggli experienced.
The couple relocated their lives to a more family-friendly area in the Upper West Side, Manhattan. This brought up more chaos in their marriage and the truth was yet to be fully known about what was really happening behind the closed curtains of their new Manhattan family home.
Things spun completely out of control when Michael filed for divorce in 2015. One would think that this would put an end to both their misery but it just turned up the heat. Soon after receiving the divorce papers, Jean filed a lawsuit against Michael claiming that she had been violently attacked by her now, soon-to-be ex-husband. It was stated that all this aggression became physically violent when they started arguing about money.
Things escalated to a breaking point and in the courtroom, it broke. Michael fought the allegations as hard as he could and he had this to say: “I would never physically or psychologically harm any of my loved ones, especially my wife. That’s simply not the man I am. I will continue to respect Jean’s privacy and not contribute to a public spectacle of an extremely private matter.”
"On Easter 1996, he punched me in the middle of the face, and I fell to the ground and knocked my teeth on the floor. He continued to beat me, mostly focusing on my body. Michael once punched me in the kidney on this same occasion of domestic violence." Jean put up quite the display of emotions while claiming that Michael had started beating her three years before their wedding.
Jean had tears rolling down her cheeks as she took away all the hope the public had while following their "inspiring marriage". Every single person in that courtroom, while they were at each other face to face, was shocked to hear what Muggli had to say. Michael denied all the claims.
Jean stated during their divorce proceedings that Michael was not being as sexually active with her and it was all due to him being homosexual, another shocking statement that made everyone question her vindictive motives. She claimed that "Michael moved into Ian’s one-bedroom apartment, and you can tell an alternative lifestyle sprouted."
Michael and Ian were close, they had been friends for a long time and had each other's backs just like any good friend would have during a turbulent time like this. Before publicly stating this, Jean's lawyer advised her not to go forward with these claims as Ian was a famous public figure who had been on popular shows like The Doctors, Celebrity Fit Club, and The View.
“If this were true, it would hit the fan from the get-go; I have plenty of friends that are bi or homosexual. It’s fine with me.” is a statement Michael Strahan made on a radio show after Jean accused him of being gay. Michael did not take well to these accusations and went on a radio show called Wendy Williams's radio show to elaborate on this topic. Michael denied them and stayed calm but thorough through all of it.
Michael's lawyer, Robert Penza guided Michael with his statements and his neutral attitude toward homosexuality. "This is New York City. If you can't accept people for being people, then you have no business being here. I don’t frown on anybody for that lifestyle, it’s not my lifestyle. And you know, I just laugh. All that matters is that I’m gonna take care of my kids."
In the light of the recent accusations made against Michael and his friend, Ian Smith, Ian also came forward to tell his side of the story. He responded by letting the world know about his current life situation concerning a partner. Ian was a happily married man and even though Ian and Michael did spend many years living together, it was not a result of a sexual nature at all. Ian made it clear that he was great at hospitality and making his friends feel welcomed into the home.
Michael confirmed this by saying: "When I had to stay somewhere, he opened his door. It’s not that I couldn’t stay at any hotel I want.". Ian stood firm on the topic of being a happily married man now. Giving no possibility to having a gay fling, ever.
Their courtroom-heated mess became more public and more shocking with each court battle. Jean kept pushing the lawsuit insisting that there was, indeed, domestic violence. With so much on the line, the children were the only ones truly suffering in the end. Jean put all the cards on the table and exposed her whole story. She gave details that shocked the world. Jean claimed that the domestic violence started long before their wedding or the birth of their twins when they were still living in Germany.
Jean claimed that his first act of aggression towards her was in 1996 when Straham supposably punched her in the face. Michael counteracted by stating: “It’s unfortunate that some marriages don’t always work out for both parties, but that’s a painful reality of the times we live in.”
Jean took inventory of each abuse case in court. Strahan was in a position to possibly lose his daughters if he was found guilty. Jean claimed the abuse started even as far as three years before they tied the knot. This made the world question why she didn't leave him then already but continued to have children and get married to him. There were many questions and the answers were coming.
“On Easter 1996, he punched me in the middle of the face, and I fell to the ground and knocked my teeth on the floor. He continued to beat me, mostly focusing on my body.” Jean stated in the courtroom. Everyone was very shocked about the allegations. Jean recalled how Michael beat her body, punched her in the kidneys, and even continued beating her while she was already lying on the ground.
They both agreed to go to therapy to solve their aggression and lack of communication. Jean then later admitted that the therapy sessions only lasted a limited period. According to Jean the sessions stopped just before their daughters were born and the abuse just carried on after their birth. It was the solution that failed and Jean claims to have run out of options.
Everything Jean Muggli was confessing to seemed odd and people did not know what to believe anymore, nor where the therapy session happened and what good they had done. Motives are always questioned when there is a big financial gain for any party.
The devil is in the details, as they say. According to records, statements proved that Jean had transferred $1.7 million from their joint account into her account without Michael's approval. The couple had their own "couple's account" and both would agree on transactions made there. According to Jean, Michael charged into the room at full speed and started yelling at her. He stood so close she felt the spit droplets all over her face.
”Where’s my money? Give me my f****** money back”. Jean admits that she did it as a form of rebellion because Michael had done the same. It was her way of proving her power and that she was equal. There is no proof of her accusations about Michael doing the same, anywhere.
As evidence surfaced, Jean claims to have moved more money, after the $1.7milion. Another transaction of $1.6 million was made soon after due to fear. Jean claims to have acted quickly because of the way Michael looked at her in the arguments. She said his face was filled with hatred and that she needed the money as a form of protection, arguably as a means of escape. The story took a complete turn around when Jean eventually admitted that Strahan didn't touch her at that point.
People were more confused as to why she moved so much money when he was not threatening her life. Michael also came forward to acknowledge that he did not touch her. “I was never in her face. I raised my hand at the end of the discussion and said, "Put the f****** money back into the account.”
Two years before Jean Muggli and Michael Strahan got married, Jean claimed that Michael had recorded Muggli's sister while she was busy unknowingly taking her clothes off. It baffled everyone as to why Jean waited so long before admitting to this incident as it was by now, already 2006 when she announced it. Jean was certainly using everything she could find to make Michael out to be a villain.
Both parties were undergoing serious emotional problems due to all the media pressures and stress in their relationship. Jean claimed: "I had found video equipment in my bedroom. He had been taping my sister undressing". Muggli also claimed that Michael had sent her $30,000 to keep quiet about the incident. It was supposedly transferred to a private account of hers in North Dakota.
After years of fighting, lying, and lacking the qualities needed to be role models for their daughters, Jean Muggli and Michael Strahan ended their marriage. Due to their prenuptial agreement, the divorce meant a great financial loss on Michael's behalf. The court ordered Michael to pay his end of the deal which was a whopping $15 million. Not only did Michael have to pay the $15 million which is the 20 percent of his annual earnings from each year they were married, but he also had to pay $18,000 per month for child support.
With this prenuptial agreement in place, Michael fought a losing battle when trying to get the agreement thrown out. The prenuptial was set in stone and there was nothing Michael could do to change it. Michael had to pay.
Jean Muggli and Michael Strahan's divorce went viral. It was the burning bushfire tabloids needed to sell their papers. It was a dark and rough patch for both of them, especially for Michael who lost more than either of them on a financial scale. "Getting divorced is probably one of the toughest things I’ve ever gone through. It was also a learning experience, and I learned a lot about myself and I learned a lot about a lot of the people who were around at that time and some aren’t around anymore."
Michael shared how he felt with his fans and those following the story. At the same time, Jean gave her side of the story too when she shared details with The New York Post: "It pays to tell the truth, and I told the truth.”
After the divorce, it became quite evident that there were many more unresolved issues the freshly divorced couple needed to deal with. Just as the public started to see the dust settle, things became heated again surrounding different matters. By now, both Jean and Michael had started rebuilding their lives yet the claws still binding them became evident.
Michael started dating other women while Jean kept a low profile spending most of her time with her daughters. Michael seemed to have jumped into the dating pool rather quickly but he was now a free man, handsome, and famous, rebuilding the financial ruins his divorce to Muggli left him in.
What better way to get over an ex than get under another? After jumping back into the world of being a bachelor, Michael started dating Nicole Mitchell, who had also experienced divorce in her life. Nicole was the ex-wife of Eddy Murphy. They were both famous and knew how to deal with the pressures of fame. Nicole had her fair share of the business to deal with just like Michael.
Nicole was sporting her gorgeous sexual flair while executing a modeling and acting career. She was also a divorced, single parent which made them relate to each other in many ways. Between them, they had quite the little family with their, all together, 7 children. Michael's two girls and Nicole's five children from her previous marriage to Murphy. The two got engaged but never got married. They were together for seven years.
With no public statements over why Michael and Nicole broke up, the public was left to their own devices for the answers. So, people went digging. Many sources came forward and it is said that the two broke up over Michael's infidelity. It was made known that the two had been arguing constantly, and loudly about another woman. One woman in particular. People heard Nicole shouting: "I know you’re in there with some b****!", clearly indicating that there was someone else threatening their relationship.
Unfortunately, neither Michael nor Nicole made any statements to lead the public to believe otherwise. One of the biggest speculations was that Michael and his co-star, Kelly Ripa were seeing each other behind Nicole's back, and as soon as Michael commented that Ripa was his "TV wife", tabloids went crazy.
After being engaged for five years with no wedding date in sight, the couple split up and Nicole moved out of their home in 2014. There were no details about why the two broke off their engagement or why they split up, but they remain friends. Neither one of them spoke about the details in public nor did they give reasons for the split in interviews.
It was all left to the public's speculations despite the rumors of Michael having an affair. Nicole even confirmed their friendship by saying: "We will always be friends."
What happens on screen is usually a lot different from what happens behind it. So, although it seemed great on the show, Michael and Kelly were experiencing quite a bit of miscommunication and misunderstandings surrounding their work ethics. Michael jokingly stated in one interview that Kelly was his "TV wife" and this was more true than one could imagine if you take into consideration Michael's failed relationships.
Kelly seemed very unavailable when Michael insisted on meetings about ideas or plans for the show. Their chemistry in front of the camera was very powerful though, it seemed that they could have even been having a secret little love affair behind it but Michael left the show in 2016 and he never said anything about their relationship as co-workers.
"When it was time to go, it was time to go. Certain things that were going on behind the scenes just caught up," said Michael when the two clearly had come to a finishing point concerning working together. When Michael left in 2016, it was reported that Kelly went away on holiday, took some time off from work. Michael stated how much he tried to make things work but it was clearly over between them.
Taking leave after Michael left only sparked people's curiosity. It definitely fueled the public's suspicion. To stop rumors dead in their tracks, Michael stated that there was no animosity or bad blood between them. "If people think, ‘Oh, he hates her’ – I don’t hate her. I do respect her for what she can do at her job. I cannot say enough about how good she is at her job."
With many failed relationships behind him, Michael never stopped believing in finding a lasting life partner. Just one year after his break-up with a bombshell, Nicole Mitchell, Michael began dating Kayla Quick. She was a successful model with beautiful big blue eyes, long brown hair and she was also much younger than him. Michael must have received enough blows from the public because unlike his previous experiences with dating women, he kept his one with Kayla very private.
They tried not to be seen together in public, meeting each other where they wanted to go. In all their years together they were seldomly photographed being affectionate outside their home. With so much attention on Michael’s on again off again love life and affairs, this was the "safer" route to take in the hopes of a healthy start.
When you are in the public eye, no stone is left unturned. The media will dig to find any information they can find to add to the drama, all in the name of selling tabloids. People, on the other hand, did not expect to find such an intense past overshadowing the young model's public persona. It turned out that Kayla had many demons hiding away in her past. It only added fuel to the fire of why the two were keeping their relationship so under wraps.
Was it to hide Kayla's disturbing past? Or did they really just want to be left alone to love each other without cameras tracking their every move? The information gathered soon made things more clear as to why they decided to keep their relationship private.
Kayla Quick's pass quickly surfaced. It turned out that she was not only a model but spent many years being an "exotic dancer", stripping in nightclubs. She had also reportedly been arrested on several occasions. She was arrested when she was 14 years old and again only four years later after stealing money from her own grandmother. Her grandmother was ill at the time and had Kayla arrested after $6000 went missing.
To top it all off, Kayla, together with her boyfriend at the time, was arrested again only this time for robbery, breaking, and entering. Trouble seemed to follow Kayla throughout her younger years and it was clear that she was an extreme party girl. She spent years dancing in Tampa, Florida at a nightclub and it led to more speculation about how she met Michael.
They were enjoying a lovely relaxing vacation together in St. Barts. By the looks of things, their smiles, and body language, life looked dandy and the two couldn't get enough of each other. For most people following Michael's career and life behind it, people were happy to see that he found joy after years of court battles with his ex-wife and ‘baby-mama’.
Strahan, did an interview with People Magazine sometime later where he stated: “A lot of people ask me, ‘Okay, how did you go from football to commentating to morning TV? You seem so happy.’ I truly am happy. I respect waking up every day and feeling fortunate to do what I do and having the people in my life that I have, but it’s something you have to train yourself to do.”
Aside from the shock of Michael dating an ex-convict and former exotic dancer much younger than him, he shocked the world yet again. Michael and Jean Muggli went back to court after more than a decade. Only this time, Michael took Jean there in an attempt to gain custody of their two daughters. Strahan claimed that Muggli had been showing a long pattern of emotional and physical abuse towards their twin daughters, Isabella and Sophia, to the point where drastic measures now needed to be taken.
Michael got the courtesy ball rolling in 2020 when he demanded that Jean only get limited visitation rights. With much water already under the bridge, the world knew they were in for one messy ride. Neither Jean nor Michael made any public comments concerning the lawsuit but the world stood by watching closely.
The world stood by in shock as the details of Jean's epic failure to be a responsible mother came to light. Firstly, Jean never adhered to the rules concerning taking the girls for therapy sessions. Michael also claimed that Jean hid their daughters' passports so that they would be unable to attend their volleyball games or any of their cross-country horse racing events.
Not only could they not attend any of their sporting events, but Michael was unable to take his girls on their "daddy-daughter-Euro-trip" due to them not having passports. Michael's whole plan seemed to take a few steps back when Jean reported that Michael had a private investigator following her every move, which in turn was an invasion of her privacy.
After a long and treacherous court battle, the twins were free to move back to their father in Manhattan. Before Jean and Michael's divorce, this was where they had grown up and it was more than familiar to them. After the divorce, the twins were ordered by the court to go live with their mother which was in North Carolina. The tables had turned and Jean agreed to follow Michael's requests concerning what was best for their daughters.
Not only did Michael get full custody of their daughters, but he also had the domestic violence cases dismissed. The only topic still at hand was that of the child support Michael was paying. The court agreed to set a new court date for this matter to be dealt with too. It was the final episode of their drama series. Or, so they hoped.
Things took a turn for the worst in Jean Muggli's life when she was arrested for not adhering to the court's rules. The judge ruled that Muggli had no contact with her former girlfriend, Marianne Ayer. Ayer had had enough of Muggli's obsessive behavior and decided it was time to take legal action. In court, Marianne exposed all the dysfunctional behavior Jean was displaying such as her violent behavior and harassment.
When the police arrested Jean Muggli she was in violation of the rules and was caught lurking outside of Marianne's home. This was the second time Jean Muggli made headline news concerning her dealings with the law aside from the custody battle she recently endured with Michael over their daughters. Things seemed to have been falling apart for Jean.
From family gatherings to steamy vacation photos, it was evident that Michael and Kayla were an item. They had been in their relationship as private as possible for six years and all it did was make the public wonder about the wedding. At this point in Michael's life, the only time he saw Jean was when they had to meet for discussions or dropping or picking up their daughters. In true Hollywood style, people were waiting for the next bomb to explode, and after Michael was photographed out on a "date" with Marianna Hewitt, tabloids went mad.
Marianna Hewitt is a lifestyle blogger who enjoys watching a bit of sport. Who better to go out with to a game than former sports star, Michael Strahan. The two were caught on camera during Summer last year (2021)
Michael has spent many years in front of the camera and doing interviews. From small-time radio shows to big TV shows and famous magazines. He always seems to end up putting emphasis on the most important aspect of his life, fatherhood. Michael did an interview with People Magazine where he went particularly deep about his feelings concerning his daughters.
He said: "My kids give me strength. I love being with the kids. To me, it’s all about family, now more than anything." With things finally reaching smooth grounds concerning Jean, the mother of his children (with whom he barely has any interactions anymore these days aside from child-related matters), Michael can live his life happily the way he wants to.
Michael felt it was time to focus on the one thing that drives him more than anything in the world. Well, the two things in this case. He also commented on his love for where he lived, Upper West Side, New York. Michael also commented on living there: “I like the Upper West Side, because, being a father, I like the family feels to it.
You see mothers with strollers, people walking their dogs. One thing I love about the neighborhood when you go into places, it’s not like, ‘Michael!’ I’m another person who’s just there.” It's a calm, family-friendly area bounded by Central Park on the east, and on the west, you have the beautiful Hudson River.