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Rosie O'Donnell Says She’s ‘Hoping for the Best’ After Reported Split from Fiancée

People logo People 11/19/2019 Helen Murphy
Rosie O'Donnell wearing glasses and smiling at the camera: Rosie O'Donnell | Bruce Glikas/WireImage © Bruce Glikas/WireImage Rosie O'Donnell | Bruce Glikas/WireImage

Rosie O’Donnell is speaking out amid reports that she and fiancée Elizabeth Rooney have split.

On Monday, the television personality opened up about her relationship status in an interview with Extra at an event for her non-profit Rosie’s Theater Kids. O’Donnell, 57, told the outlet that she is “hoping for the best” and admitted it is “hard” to navigate her relationships in the public eye.

“I’m good,” she said. “We are still figuring things out — it’s hard in the public light … It’s hard for a person who is a normal person in a normal job. I’m kind of used to it … We are trying to figure it out … I am a hopeful person, and I am hoping for the best.”

Instead of bringing Rooney as her date to Monday’s event, O’Donnell told Extra that she brought her children with her.

“They are supposed to be here and we are supposed to be taking photos with the family — my children and their respective dates,” she shared. “It’s a big night. They each brought their respective boyfriend or girlfriend.”

In late October, it was reported that O’Donnell and Rooney had split after being engaged for nearly one year. (A rep for O’Donnell had no comment when contacted by PEOPLE at the time.)

O’Donnell also seemingly deleted several Instagram photos related to her engagement to Rooney.

a hand holding a cellphone: Elizabeth Rooney/Instagram; Inset: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty © Elizabeth Rooney/Instagram; Inset: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Elizabeth Rooney/Instagram; Inset: Astrid Stawiarz/Getty

After keeping their relationship out of the spotlight, O’Donnell had confirmed the couple’s engagement in October 2018 after dating for a year.

Calling Rooney a “wonderful woman,” the former The View co-host opened up about the romance earlier this year, explaining how they made their long-distance relationship work.

“She lives in Boston now and I live here in New York. It’s been a long-distance thing. It’s been great. I think she’s a wonderful woman,” said O’Donnell, who proudly praised Rooney for being an Army veteran and an undefeated boxer during her time of service. “She’s very much an equal, she’s very much her own person and loves what she does. She’s a pretty unbelievable young woman.”

Rosie O'Donnell holding a sign posing for the camera: Elizabeth Rooney and Rosie O'Donnell | Astrid Stawiarz/Getty © Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Elizabeth Rooney and Rosie O'Donnell | Astrid Stawiarz/Getty O’Donnell also joked about the pair’s 23-year age gap.

“I keep telling her I’m too old for her. But she doesn’t seem to care,” she said. “She’s like, ‘I was in the Army! I put my life on the line every day you think I don’t know who I want to date?’ I’m like, ‘All right I guess that’s true.’ She has a lot of good points.”

O’Donnell has been married twice. She shares four children — son Parker, 24, son Blake, 19, and daughter Vivienne, 16, and 22-year-old daughter Chelsea — with first wife Kelli Carpenter, who she was with from 2004 to 2007. Her second ex-wife, Michelle Rounds, died of an apparent suicide in September 2017 at age 46. They share one daughter, Dakota, 6.

Related slideshow: All the Celebrity Couples Who've Called It Quits in 2019:


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