Country music stars Faith Hill and Tim McGraw have been married for more than a quarter of a decade, and they’re still going strong today. Their relationship seems as solid as ever, but that doesn’t mean that everything else in their lives has been smooth sailing – quite the opposite, in fact.
Don’t let their marital bliss fool you. The country music giants have lived through a series of personal and professional dramas ever since they first got together. Take a look at all the things they don’t want you to know about – tumultuous relationships in their early years, marital problems in later years, and even some public lawsuits have played a major part in both of their lives.
Faith Was an Adopted Child Who Always Felt a “Darkness” Inside of Her
The first thing to understand about Faith is that she’s been battling demons ever since she was little. There’s a “darkness” that Faith Hill has had inside her ever since she can remember, and it stems from the fact that she was raised by her adoptive family: “I was adopted into this incredible home, a loving, positive environment, yet I had this yearning, this kind of darkness that was also inside me.”
In 1993, when Faith had some time off between albums, she went on a hunt for her biological parents and found them. “The first time I met my birth mother, I just stared at her,” she stated. “I’d never seen anyone that looked anything like me.” But there was another shocking revelation just waiting around the corner for Faith.
Faith Was Lied to by Her Adoptive Parents About Being the Product of an Affair With a Married Man
Faith’s adoptive parents never hid the fact that she was adopted from her. But they might have done more damage than good when they told young Faith a story about how she came to be born. Adoptive parents Edna and Ted told Faith that her mother had given her up for adoption after having an affair with a married man and falling pregnant unexpectedly.
Faith was told that her biological mom tried to convince her married lover to leave his wife and marry her instead, but that she was unsuccessful. Faith later learned that no only were her biological parents married, but they had another child which they did decide to keep as their own.
Tim Discovered Who His Real Dad Was When Rummaging Through His Mother’s Closet as a Kids
Similar to Faith, Tim had issues with his biological parents. He was raised to believe that the man who he lived with and called dad was his real father until he found some damning evidence at the age of 11. He discovered his own birth certificate one day when looking through his mom’s closet trying to find some family photos, and saw that another man’s name was listed as his father.
Tim confronted his mom, who revealed the truth about his real dad, Tug McGraw. She took 11-year-old Tim to visit his elderly father for the first time, but Tug refused to admit he was Tim’s real dad. Only when Tim was 18 years old did Tug admit to being Tim’s actual parent, and the two developed a relationship from then on. Eventually, Tim stopped using his step-father’s surname, Smith, and changed to McGraw instead.
Faith’s First Love Was Another Man Called Daniel Hill
Faith was 19 years old in 1987, when she moved to Nashville to pursue her country music career. She met music producer Daniel Hill, and they hit it off immediately – “I was immediately floored by her presence and I hadn’t even heard her sing yet,” Daniel recalled from the first moment he met her.
The pair of them started dating, and a year and a half later Faith and Daniel walked down the aisle. But Faith would later look back at this period of her life and reflect on her choices, stating “I was going through so much. I was like a flower trying to bud. Marriage wasn’t what I needed. It was a disguise.”
Everyone at the Time Thought Faith and Daniel Were Happy Together
Faith and Daniel stayed married to each other for six years, divorcing in 1994. But the people around them, including Faith’s close friend and her former boss Gary Morris, thought things were going great for the young couple, even though Fath’s singing career wasn’t panning out as she’d hoped.
Gary recalls how “Faith was a devoted wife to Daniel.” He continued: “It was one of those things where she [Faith] said, ‘I’m marrying one time,’ and this was it and he was the guy.” But things were very different behind closed doors. Faith was more or less having an existential crisis.
Faith Started to Dislike the Music Industry and Began Looking Into an Interior Design Career
During Faith’s marriage to Daniel, she became increasingly disillusioned with the music business, and even considered switching careers entirely. Ex-husband Daniel explained: “She was charming, talented, ambitious. But she was also confused. She moved to Nashville to sing, but… her priorities seemed to shift toward more domestic pursuits, such as cooking and decorating our home.”
Daniel even recalled how Faith “Even considered enrolling in interior design school.” But according to him, he recognized her talent for singing and songwriting and encouraged her to stick with it: “I always tried to steer her back toward music, where I knew her true talent was. The interior design industry doesn’t know what it missed!”
Faith Started Dating Someone New When She Was Still Married to Daniel
Faith’s friend and former boss recalled the end of Faith’s marriage to Daniel, stating, “I think she had a reality check.” Whatever the case, she appears to have started dating record producer Scott Hendricks the year before her divorce was finalized in 1993. Scott was totally smitten with the young country singer.
Scott said upon meeting Faith, “Besides her considerable talent and voice, I think part of the magic is in her radiant personality.” Things appeared to be going well with Scott and Faith’s relationship, so much so that the couple got engaged a couple of years later. But Faith would soon experience a change of heart upon meeting another country singer in 1996.
Faith Fell in Love With Tim While She Was Engaged to Scott and Having Just Finalized Her Divorce From Daniel
In 1996, Faith met Tim for the first time while he was on the road for his “Spontaneous Combustion” tour, where she was brought on as the opening act of the show. They had an immediate connection, which put them in a difficult position – Faith was still engaged to Scott but she knew she wanted to pursue things with Tim.
“It obviously wasn’t a rock-solid situation or it wouldn’t have ended,” Faith later stated about leaving her fiancé Scott for Tim. Faith’s relationship with Tim may have overlapped with her relationship with Scott, but she felt solid in her decision. Faith and Tim would marry in the same year that she left her record producer fiancé.
Tim Admitted to Billboard Magazine That He Had His Own Fiancée When He First Met Faith
Faith wasn’t the only one who dumped their partner. Tim had been dating another woman, Kristine Donahue, for the three years prior to meeting Faith, and had even proposed. Yep, Tim was also engaged to someone else in 1996! But as we know, their relationship wasn’t to last.
Tim fell madly in love with Faith and broke it off with Kristine. But they continued to stay in contact with each other over the years, with it being reported that Tim’s ex would sometimes use his surname as her own. As previously mentioned, Tim had been like a father to her son from a previous relationship, Tyler Zarbo.
Shortly After the Wedding, the Public Finds Out That Faith and Tim Are Expecting Their First Child
Things were going well with Faith and Tim after they got married, but they didn’t wait long to start a family. By the time they arrived at the 24th annual American Music Awards in January of 1997, Faith was already sporting a growing baby bump. They were expecting their first child together!
Faith was seen wearing an adorable white babydoll dress, that largely hid her baby bump – only discerning eyes would easily spot that she was expecting. Still, the press caught on and soon it was known to the public. And only four short months later, Faith gave birth to baby girl Grace…
Faith and Tim Decided To Get Married After They Found Out She Was Pregnant
Only four months after debuting her burgeoning baby bump, Faith gave birth to their first daughter, Grace. But during their pregnancy debut at the American Music Awards, they had been married for less than three months. That meant that Faith and Tim had their wedding when she was already two months pregnant.
The truth is, the couple would have known that they were pregnant at the time of the wedding. Both Faith and Tim have never made a public statement about it, but many believe that they married quickly in 1996 because of the pregnancy. For years, people thought that the couple just knew they were meant to be together, right at the start of their relationship. But the truth is, they had a reason to rush things along.
Tim Recounted How He Proposed to Faith in 1996, but Mentions Nothing About the Pregnancy
According to Tim, Faith actually refused his proposal at first. In a 2021 interview, Tim recalled how “We had dated for a while. I actually asked her to marry me quite a few times and she kept saying no. She said, ‘I’m not going to get involved with another country singer, it’s just not going to work out.’” They were at a country music festival at the time.
Apparently, Tim came back to his dressing room after a set and saw a response from Faith: “I looked at the mirror. In lipstick it said, ‘Yes! I’m gonna be your wife… And we still have that mirror. And it was the best day of my life, that’s for sure.” But Tim’s account of the proposal also fuels the idea that they got married because they were so madly in love, and mentions nothing about the pregnancy.
Faith Is Accused of Being a Bad Sport When It Comes to the Accomplishments of Her Peers
Faith suffered a major setback in 2006 during the Country Music Association Awards when newcomer Carrie Underwood was declared female vocalist of the year. Faith’s entire reaction was captured on camera unbeknownst to her, and she was seen feeling visibly outraged over Carrie Underwood’s success.
Faith was seen screaming “What?!” to those standing near her before storming away. It was seen as poor form on Faith’s part, and she was accused of undermining her fellow country music singer and generally being a sore loser when others are rewarded for their accomplishments. Faith later claimed she was just joking about losing her cool, but nobody bought it. After all, the footage shows Faith looking very upset.
Faith Has Been Known To Lose Her Cool With Fans, Even During a Performance
Faith didn’t help her public image when in 2007, just a year after the CMA’s debacle she was filmed being confrontational with a fan at one of her and Tim’s shows. A woman in the crowd moved her hands towards Tim, who was on stage performing at the time, and Faith wasn’t impressed one bit.
In the show footage, Faith is seen scolding the woman in question on the far right of the stage, yelling at her, “You don’t go grabbing somebody else’s husband’s b—s. Do you understand me?” Some fans praised her for her antagonistic behavior but little did they know that Tim would later find himself in even more hot water for confronting a fan.
Tim Hits a Female Fan in the Head at a Concert Before Getting Hit With a Lawsuit Himself
Like wife, like husband? In 2014, Tim appeared to lose his cool with a fan during a performance of the country star’s hit, “Truck Yeah.” He was in Atlanta at the time when a fan reached out for Tim and accidentally tore his jeans in the process. In response, Tim landed a huge slap across his female fan’s face, and even his most faithful fans were aghast.
The fan who got slapped, Jessica, later stated that in no way was she attempting to grab Tim offensively: “He slapped my hand away then he turned back slapped me in the head very hard,” she later revealed, elaborating, “I fell backwards. And then he actually reared back to hit me again, but a fan on the opposite side of the stage grabbed his arm and stopped him.” Tim was hit with a lawsuit, but settled it out of court.
Faith and Tim Are Hit With a Copyright Lawsuit for What Was Defined as ”Blatant” Plagiarism
Both Faith and Tim were hit with another lawsuit in 2018 when Australian singer-songwriters Sean Carey and Beau Golden claimed that the country duo’s hit single “The Rest of Our Life” exhibited “blatant copying.” The lawsuit stated that “The copying is, in many instances, verbatim, note-for-note copying of original elements of the Song, and is obvious to the ordinary observer.”
Carey and Golden are formidable country stars in their own right, holding record deals with major labels and working for Netflix in music direction positions. The lawsuit was seeking damages for around $5 million, and eventually, they ended up settling for an undisclosed amount. Whatever the amount was, it certainly didn’t help Faith and Tim’s public image.
Tim’s ”Secret Son” From a Previous Relationship Was Exposed by the National Enquirer
In 2013, Tim was accused of hiding his “secret son” from his wife Faith, as well his fans around the world. The National Enquirer got in touch with the alleged son, Tyler Zarbo, who was 30 years old at the time. Tyler didn’t claim to be his biological son but did declare that Tim raised him as his own back when the country singer was dating his mom, Kristine Donahue (left.)
“Tim McGraw was like a father to me when I was growing up,” Tyler admitted, adding “He saw me as the son he never had, and we’ve stayed in contact.” The Enquirer claimed that Tim never told Faith about his ongoing fatherly relationship with Tyler, although he denied this to be true. Whatever the case, it was the first time his fans had ever heard about his “secret son.”
Tim’s Sexuality Is Called Into Question in Light of an Upcoming Memoir About the Country Star’s Touring Antics
2013 also saw Tim’s former bandmate reveal all about his supposedly secret homoerotic tendencies – at least when it came to pranks on tour. This former bandmate and friend was reportedly writing a tell-all memoir in which he would recount numerous antics that he experienced with the country singer.
This former bandmate was allegedly going to include a photo in his exposé showing Tim slapping another man’s bare behind. On top of that, there would be “stories about how Tim made comments and complimented some band members on the size of their manhood, as they played along with his practical jokes,” Radar Online reported. As of yet, this memoir has never made it to publication.
Tim Developed a Drinking Problem Over the Years and It Almost Cost Him His Marriage
If you’re thinking that it’s been smooth sailing for the past 26 years, you’d be wrong. Despite their picture-perfect image, there have been hiccups in their relationship along the way. “I used to have to have a few drinks to get on stage, because I’m sort of an innately shy person,” Tim once told Oprah. But his pre-show tonic soon turned into a full-blown addiction that nearly cost him his marriage to Faith.
Tim got to a stage where “I couldn’t do it without [drinking],” and “It was affecting my family… I was at a point where I could lose everything that I had in my life, first and foremost, my family. It [was] time to stop. And I stopped.” In 2008 he managed to stop drinking entirely, and as a result, saved his marriage. But it wasn’t easy – “That was the toughest tour that I’ve ever done in my life… to get through that tour not drinking,” he stated in 2014.
Tim Isn’t Enough of a Clean Freak for Faith and It Gets on Her Nerves
The problems don’t stop there. Apparently, his personal hygiene habits have been a reoccurring point of contention between the country music couple. In 2020, he revealed how his showering habits – or lack of – have been an ongoing issue for Faith. “I spent 30 years in hotel rooms going in and out,” Tim explained.
He continued: “I’ve never even thought about cleaning up, but she’s a neat freak, so she likes everything pretty clean. So I always get on her nerves about that.” But judging by Tim revealed in a later interview, he didn’t do a good enough job taking care of personal hygiene and at one point, enough was enough for Faith.
Faith ”Forced” Tim To Take More Showers on the Set of 1883
Tim probably should have picked up Faith’s hints over the years. On the set of 1883, a Wild West drama series starring Tim and Faith opposite each other, Faith told Tim enough was enough, and that he had to start showering more. Even though he had his own reasons for not wanting to bathe.
Tim revealed to the Just for Variety podcast, “There were a few times that my wife forced me to take a shower while we were shooting.” But he explained, “I wanted to stay in character as best I could.” Faith ultimately had the final say: “She’s like, ‘I don’t care about Method [acting]. You stink.'”
Tim Reveals What Went on When Faith Slapped Him on the Set of 1883
While appearing on The Tonight Show in 2022, Tim admitted to getting slapped by Faith on the set of 1883. Faith and Tim decided that they would do a “real slap” for the sake of the show, but one slapped turned into many and left Tim feeling a little worse for wear.
He admitted that he had been hit with “centrifugal motion” for the sake of the show, and that the slaps were very much real. “No, no, that was a real slap,” Tim told Jimmy Fallon, adding “But after about the eighth take when I was…” before Jimmy stopped him mid-sentence and broke out in laughter.
Faith and Tim Remain Committed to Showing the World That Their Relationship Is Piping Hot
Faith and Tim are known for shooting down any speculation about marital problems. In 2013, it was reported that the country music duo had undergone divorce proceedings, which the couple claimed were “totally false and ridiculous.” Once again in 2021, tabloids speculated that the couple had split, but they shot down those rumors too.
That being said, they may be going too far to try and prove their doubters wrong, as they’ve become known for their frequent and raunchy PDAs. If there’s one thing that the couple takes seriously, it’s making sure that everyone knows that they can’t keep their hands off each other.