Stroud MP Neil Carmichael's marriage on the rocks
MP Neil Carmichael and his wife have appealed for "time and space" to reflect on difficulties in their marriage.
Conservative MP for Stroud Mr Carmichael, 51, and his wife Laurence needed privacy to plan for the future, a joint statement from the couple said.
They have hit troubled waters thanks, in the main, to the pressures of being in the public eye, but are still living together.
Mr Carmichael became the Stroud Constituency's representative in Westminster two and a half years ago when the coalition was born.
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Mr Carmichael wed Laurence, who works as a senior university lecturer, in 1995. After 17 years of marriage the couple have three teenage children.
But Mr Carmichael said: "We are experiencing difficulties in our marriage, not least because Laurence has found the exposure to public and political life difficult and, at times, excessively intrusive."
He said each was devoted to their children.
"We are, together, exploring ways forward to support the needs of our family and to resolve this particular problem," Mr Carmichael said. "Nobody else is involved. This is purely an internal family matter and we would be grateful for time and space to reflect on and plan for the future."
Mr Carmichael said he and his wife's respective careers were not affected. "We are not making any further comment," he said after a breakfast interview they together gave The Citizen at their home in Paganhill.
Mr and Mrs Carmichael moved to Stroud in 1999. The MP studied politics at Nottingham University and worked in business and agriculture before entering Parliament. As a farmer he produced lamb and beef in Northumberland and still has an active interest in farming.
Over 10 years Mr Carmichael worked in business with a focus on investment in Eastern Europe, notably Poland, and public services. In the early 90s Mr Carmichael was himself a visiting lecturer at two universities.