8 Facts And Rumors About Matt Lauer's Wife, Annette Roque — And Their Tumultuous Marriage

Who Is Matt Lauer's Wife? 8 Facts About Former Model Annette Roque
Entertainment And News

How do you tell your children about something like this?

With the list of powerful men in Hollywood losing their positions following multiple accusations of sexual harassment and abuse growing like wildfire, one can't help but wonder about their wives in regard to who they are, how they are faring, and what they will do moving forward. Given today's "emergency" announcement by NBC, who is Matt Lauer's wife and what must it be like for her to learn the news along with us that he has been released from his lucrative contract with the Today Show?

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Annette Roque, 50, has remained a relatively silent, rarely seen figure in Lauer's life since they were married 19 years ago. 

Here are 9 things to know about the woman who is Matt Lauer's wife, at least, for now.

1. She is of Dutch background.

Roque was born in December of 1966 in the Netherlands to a Dutch mother and Indonesian father, and her mixed ethnic background also includes Chinese and French ancestry. She grew up in a town near Amsterdam called Alphen aan de Rijn, where she lived until setting off to pursue her dream of modeling in her 20's.

2. She was a professional model.

After moving to Paris in 1988, Roque became a successful model in cosmetics ads, and was known by the stage name "Jade."

By the time she met Lauer, she had moved once again, to New York City, and was modeling for the likes of Victoria's Secret and J. Crew.

3. Their brief courtship and marriage seemed like a fairy tale.

Lauer and Roque were set up on a blind date by stylist Maria Santoro in July of 1997, and the two became engaged just five months later.

Speaking of the obvious romance in the air between them at their October 3, 1998 wedding in Water Mill, New York, Lauer's Today Show co-host Al Roker said, "Watching them at the table. They would be talking to somebody, and when that person would leave, the two of them were looking into each other’s eyes. You could see they were truly, truly happy."

4. She is known as a dedicated mother to their three children.

Roque and Lauer have three children together: son Jack Matthew (born in 2001), daughter Romy (2004), and son Thijs (2006).

(In case you were wondering, here is how to pronounce Thijs.)

Roque and the children live full-time in a home known as Strongheart Manor in North Haven, New York, which they purchased from Richard Gere for $36.5 million in June of 2016.

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5. She filed for divorce in 2006.

While pregnant with their third child in September of 2006, Roque filed for divorce, citing behavior by Lauer so egregious that it "endangers the physical and mental well-being of [Annette] so as to render it unsafe and improper" for the two to remain living in the same home. The papers went on to say that Roque endured "continual mental abuse" from Lauer. He countered in his own response by saying "any 'cruel and inhuman treatment' he may have exhibited was 'provoked' by his wife."

Important side note: Abuse is never "provoked." 

6. She has been labeled as "over-protective" and "jealous."

In this classic example of why-victim-blaming-is-wrong-and-we-should-believe-women 101, Access Hollywood correspondent Stephanie Bauer gave the following shameful report on Roque's decision to accompany Lauer to the Olympics in 2012.

"Matt Lauer's wife, Annette, will be tagging along when he travels across the pond for the London Olympics, but not to be a sports spectator. Instead, she's going just to keep tabs on him. Matt's wife wants to keep an eye on her husband and his wandering eye. A source tells radar online, quote, Annette has made no bones about the fact that she will be keeping close tabs on Matt. Annette reportedly told Matt that if Natalie Morales were to land that co-hosting gig for The Today Show she would divorce him, because she didn't want him cozying up any closer to Natalie. Although there is no reason to believe that these two have anything going on, Matt's wife is the same slightly unstable woman who filed for divorce when she was pregnant with their third child in 2006, but took it back."

This little take of Roque took place right around another classic moment of 2012, when Lauer decided it would be a great idea to do a "funny" segment lampooning sexual harassment in the workplace.

Special note to Stephanie: STFU.

7. It's unlikely she wasn't already aware of Lauer's cheating.

Reports from Radar Online have tied Lauer to possible extramarital affairs with celebrity chef Giada de Laurentiis, former Today Show colleague Natalie Morales, and Good Morning America host Lara Spencer.

Multiple other outlets have similarly reported that Lauer's proclivity for cheating on his wife of 19 years was widely known. As reported in People Magazine, “'He regularly cheated on his wife,' one source claims. 'Everyone knew. His wife lives in the Hamptons and he lives in the city, but we never heard he made unwanted moves.' A former Today staffer echoes the first source’s claims, telling PEOPLE, “Everyone on staff knew he cheated regularly on his wife.”

8. Her future remains to be seen.

The couple never intended to make the news of their near-divorce public and little is known as to why Roque withdrew her petition and whether or not the two may have come to some sort of agreement in order for her to so. However, in September of 2017, a source told Radar Online, "Annette turns a blind eye to it now. They play happy families at their Hamptons home on weekends, and then she lets him run off to New York to do 'Today' — and goodness knows what else."

No public statement has been made by Roque or Lauer as of yet, but he was last reported to be on his way to visit 16-year-old son Jack at prep school in order to give him a "man-to-man" explanation about his firing.

Here's hoping Annette is on her way to something much, much better. 

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Senior Editor and happily-former divorce coach & mediator Arianna Jeret is a recognized expert on love, sex, and relationships (except when it comes to her own life, of course) who has been featured in Cosmopolitan, The Huffington Post, Yahoo Style, Fox News, Bustle, Parents and more. Join her Sundays at 10:20 PM EST for answers to ALL of your questions on Facebook Live on YourTango and follow her on Twitter and Instagram.