“Collin had other plans with his friends this weekend, that’s why he is not in the picture (shame I have to explain all that, but I just did)!!!!” Jon, 43, wrote in the caption of a photo featuring him, his daughter Hannah, and his girlfriend, Colleen Conrad.
Colleen also shared photos from the family’s Independence Day getaway to Atlantic City, New Jersey. “Happy 4th of July!! Missing Collin who dissed us for his friends,” she captioned her Instagram post.
It seems the couple made sure to get one step ahead of their followers, who are usually quick to wonder about Collin’s whereabouts when he isn’t photographed along with his family. “Thank you for letting us know where Collin is. I worry when I see he isn’t with you [sparkle heart emoji]. I can’t believe your babies are old enough to ditch you for friends!” one fan commented on Colleen’s post. “You don’t have to explain anything. We know you’re a good dad,” another fan wrote in the comments of Jon’s post.
Jon shares eight children — 16-year-old sextuplets Collin, Hannah, Aaden, Joel, Leah and Alexis and 19-year-old twins Mady and Cara — with ex-wife Kate Gosselin. After the former couple divorced in 2009, Kate was awarded full custody of the children. But Jon struggled to maintain a consistent relationship with his eight children following their divorce because he claimed he did not get as much visitation as he wanted while they were growing up.
The Pennsylvania native recently reconnecting with Hannah and Collin after two major custody wins. Jon gained custody of Hannah in September 2018, and he won custody of Collin in December of that year. At the time, Jon had just released Collin from a facility for children “with special needs.” Kate enrolled Collin in the program in 2016, and when Collin left, he went straight to live with his father. Shortly after Collin’s release, Jon denied his son was on “any spectrum or [has] special needs.”
Now, the teen has a special bond with his dad and his dad’s girlfriend — so much that he even considers Colleen as a mother figure. Collin shared a sweet Mother’s Day tribute to Colleen in May, and many interpreted it as a snub to his biological mother, Kate, because he did not share a tribute to her on the holiday.
“Collin thinks the world of Colleen,” an insider exclusively revealed to In Touch at the time. “He really does consider her an unofficial stepmom.”
Scroll through the gallery below for more photos of Jon, Colleen and Hannah’s 4th of July getaway!
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