It didn’t look like there was trouble in paradise. On June 11, a month after celebrating their 17th wedding anniversary, Tori Spelling and Dean McDermott were all smiles as they posed at the Stand for Kids Gala supporting the Luskin Orthopaedic Institute for Children in LA. Four days later, the former Beverly Hills, 90210 actress gushed as she shared Instagram photos of herself and Dean celebrating eldest daughter Stella’s 15th birthday with her siblings, Liam, 16, Hattie, 11, Finn, 10, and Beau, 5, at the Beverly Hilton. Tori thanked the hotel for treating them to the “penthouse suite, cabanas, cakes, the works,” adding, “Family time is the best time.”

But just two days later, Dean dropped a bombshell: His and Tori’s marriage is over. “It’s with great sadness and a very very heavy heart that after 18 years together and 5 amazing children, @torispelling and I have decided to go our separate ways and start a new journey of our own,” Dean, 56, wrote on his Instagram page. “We will continue to work together as loving parents and guide and love our children through this difficult time.” But strangely, hours later, Dean deleted the post — and Tori, 50, stayed silent as the divorce news and speculation about the state of their marriage made headlines for days. “Some think it was all a PR stunt,” says a source, noting that the couple “can be shameless and have a history of being desperate for attention.”

Addicted to Drama?

This wouldn’t be the first time they’ve pulled a publicity stunt, says the source. In 2014, Dean’s alleged infidelity became the focus of their reality show, True Tori. Dean claimed that in late 2013 “a friend sold a story” detailing how the actor cheated on Tori with a woman named Emily Goodhand while he was working in Canada. Dean then went to rehab for sex addiction, and he and Tori fought to save their marriage on their show. But when fans and media outlets failed to find evidence of the mistress’ existence, says the source, “Dean and Tori were accused of staging his affair and creating a cheating scandal to drum up drama and ratings.” (Tori and Dean denied it.)

But Tori and Dean, who got together in 2005 after cheating on their first spouses, have also faced a slew of marital problems over the years. “So maybe they had a huge fight, Dean lashed out and announced the divorce, then he had second thoughts and they worked it out,” says the source. “They worked things out before right when everyone thought it was over.” 

Perhaps most important, “they have the kids to consider,” says the source. “Do Tori and Dean really want to break up their family?”

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