But their relationship has been changing in the face of the unraveling of their marriage. Let’s go back to the beginning and trace how we got here with Kim Kardashian and Kanye West:
Kardashian and West first meet around this time, when she had yet to become a household name. “I met him I think in 2002 or 2003,” Kardashian told Ryan Seacrest during the Keeping Up With the Kardashians 10th anniversary special, per Us Weekly. “He was recording a song with Brandy, and I was her friend. I vividly remember hanging out with him and then they did a video together, so I’d see him a few times. He was asking his friends: ‘Who is this Kim Kardajan?’ He didn’t know what my name was.”
Kardashian and West appear together in a Star Wars–themed video in which she dressed as Princess Leia and he was a Storm Trooper. She shared some photos on her now defunct personal website, writing in 2015, “In honor of Star Wars: The Force Awakens being released today, I wanted to share these old pics of Kanye and me from years ago! We worked together on a pilot for a show called Alligator Boots back in 2008, and I played Princess Leia.”
Kardashian actually marries Kris Humphries on August 11 of this year, but they split a mere 72 days later. (They didn’t legally reach a divorce settlement until 2013.) But all roads led back to West.
“Right before I got married to Kris Humphries, [Kanye and I] were talking and I just went a different direction,” she said during the KUWTK anniversary special. “I think I had to go through that to figure out what I wanted. After my breakup, I was feeling really low and down, and he said, ‘Just come to Paris and see my fashion show.’ He jokes that he put on this whole fashion show just to get a date with me. So I went there and I stayed with him, and that’s where we started dating. I swear from the moment I landed, I fell madly in love with him and I thought, Oh, my God, why didn’t I do this sooner? Like, this is what real life is like—love and fun and real support.”
Their first child, daughter North West, is born on June 15, 2013.
West proposes to Kardashian in October. The location? A huge, vacant baseball stadium. The method? A Jumbotron message that read, “Pleeease marry meee!!!” Also, a live orchestra, because of course!
West and Kardashian tie the knot in a stunning Italian wedding.
Their son, Saint, is born December 5, 2015.
Their second daughter, Chicago, is born January 15, 2018.
Baby Psalm is born May 10, 2019.
West announces plans to run for president and gives a rally in Charleston, South Carolina, on July 19 during which he reveals personal information about Kardashian and their family. This reportedly leaves Kardashian “furious.”
Then West tweets and deletes a series of messages claiming that Kardashian is trying to “lock him up” and that he’s actually been trying to divorce her. Conversations about West’s mental health swarm as this unfolds.
Kardashian West breaks her silence on the situation on July 22, posting a series of Instagram Stories that discuss West’s bipolar disorder and the need for people and the media to show compassion and empathy.
February 2021: New reports emerge that the couple is inching toward divorce. On February 19, TMZ broke the news that Kardashian had filed for divorce.
June 2021: A few months later Kardashian opens up about her reasons for ending the marriage in the two-part series finale of Keeping Up With the Kardashians. In part one, which aired on June 4, she cries to her sisters, saying, “He deserves someone that can go support his every move and go follow him all over the place and move to Wyoming. I can’t do that…. I feel like a fucking failure that it’s, like, a third fucking marriage. I feel like a fucking loser. But I can’t even think about that. I want to be happy.”
Then, in the second part of the finale, which aired on June 10, she opens up to her mom. “I just feel like I’ve worked so hard in life to achieve everything that I’ve wanted to, and I’ve lived up to my expectations and achieved 10 times more than I ever thought was humanly possible, but I don’t have a life to share that with,” she tells Kris Jenner, per Us Weekly. “Like, I do—obviously my kids and everything—but am I just going to sit here and think, ‘OK, my kids fulfill me and I’m good?’”
Ultimately, she wanted something more intimate with her partner than a series of grand gestures. “After turning 40 this year, I realized like, ‘No, I don’t want a husband that lives in a completely different state,’” she continued. “To me, I thought, ‘Oh, my God, that’s when we’re getting along the best,’ but then that is sad to me and that’s not what I want. I want someone that we have the same shows in common. I want someone who wants to work out with me.”
In fact, it was her sister’s relationship that opened her eyes during the pandemic. “Like, every single day Khloé and Tristan and I would work out at 6 a.m., the three of us, and I was third-wheeling it for a good eight months in quarantine and I was so envious of that,” Kardashian said. “I was like, ‘Wow, it’s, like, the little things I don’t have.’ I have all the big things. I have the extravagant everything you can possibly imagine and no one will ever do it like that—I know that and I’m grateful for those experiences—but I think I’m ready for the smaller experiences that I think will mean a lot.”
On Kanye’s 44th birthday, June 8, Kardashian posted a picture to Instagram of herself, West, and three of their children on a private plane. In the caption, she wrote, “Happy Birthday Love U for Life! 🎈” That same day West was spotted with Irina Shayk. (Here’s everything we know about that.)
August 2021: On August 26, Kardashian appeared at West’s third Donda listening event. While she had attended the first two with their children, this time sparked serious reconciliation rumors when she appeared to recreate her 2014 wedding with West in a full wedding gown and veil.
The questions surrounding their current relationship status are strengthened by reports that Kardashian is not planning to remove “West” from her legal name. However, sources tell People that the couple is not getting back together.
“The thing that’s important is it’s not at all about them getting back together or something like that,” a source told the publication. “It’s really just kind of this more holistic sense of love as a healing force.”
Previously, another source told People that the two are in a solid place as business partners and friends. “Kim and Kanye have a friendly relationship. It’s always been important to Kim to have a good relationship with Kanye. They are not getting back together, though,” the source said. “Kim still appreciates Kanye’s business advice and guidance. She is happy that they can hang out.”
This post will be updated.
Originally Appeared on Glamour