Kathryn Bernardo, Daniel Padilla
Kathryn Bernardo, Daniel Padilla Image Credit: insta/ bernardokath

Manila: ‘KathNiel’ fans around the world were left disappointed when actors Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla officially confirmed that they are parting ways after being together for 11 years.

The star couple and their relationship is something fans celebrated for over a decade, and on Thursday, Bernardo confirmed the split on her Instagram account. Celebrated for their undeniable chemistry, the couple known as ‘KathNiel’ charmed audiences with their on-screen and off-screen connection.

In a sincere Instagram statement, Bernardo expressed gratitude to Padilla for a real relationship that transcended the limelight.

"I've been in showbiz for almost 21 years now, 12 years as the one-half of Kathniel, and 11 years as someone who loved Deej even behind the camera," she started her statement.

"I didn't grow up in this industry constantly being controlled and dictated on. I was lucky to have had the best guidance and support system when I started my career and l've continuously worked hard to earn people's trust. But since I became an adult, I took it upon myself to take charge of my own life — the projects I work on, the way I dress, the people I surround myself with. I've always tried to be my own person. I was encouraged to think for myself and decide for myself. Even when it comes to love. Especially when it comes to love, " she added.

Addressing rumours

Berbardo also addressed rumours surrounding the breakup.

“I promised to never lose myself in this industry, so I've always been as authentic to you as I can be. I know what many of you are thinking right now. I'm well aware of the rumours and speculations going around, and as hard as it is to put everything into words, I want you to hear it straight from me: It's true that Deej and I have decided to part ways.

Acknowledging the speculation, Bernardo confirmed the separation, emphasising that their love was never a scripted act for the cameras or fans. Despite the challenges, she reflected on 11 years filled with joy, adventure, and unwavering love.

She added, “What Deej and I had was real. It was never for show. We were together not because of the cameras, not because of the fans, not because of the money that comes with a successful love team. We were genuinely in love. We grew up together, dreamed together, and saw many of those dreams become a reality — still together. That’s almost half of my life that I would never regret and would never trade for anything in the world. These are 11 years that brought me joy, adventure, and the feeling of being home,”

''We’ve been drifting apart for a while now, and we ultimately had to accept that we can’t go back to where we used to be. It just won’t be fair to pretend that everything is still the same,” she said. “These past few months have been tough, but thank you for giving us the time we need to process the pain and finally face the elephant in the room.

"That's almost half of my life that I would never regret and would never trade for anything in the world. These are 11 years that brought me joy, adventure, and the feeling of being home. Years that taught me the real meaning of unconditional love and friendship. He knew me more than anyone else. He was my first boyfriend. He was my comfort zone. He was my person. I will always have love for him."

“Deej and I will continue to support each other as we try to heal and move forward from this. We will continue to love you and make you proud, but we hope you understand that this is something we really need. We hope you can join us in this healing process and not let those precious memories go to waste,” she added.

Kathryn also said that they tried their best to make their relationship work.

In 2022, breakup rumours surfaced during a media conference for '2 Good 2 Be True,' as differing opinions on loyalty triggered speculations. Padilla and Bernardo marked 11 years of being together in October 2022.

Transitioning from teen stars to a powerhouse love team, ‘KathNiel’ not only achieved success collaboratively, but also individually.