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TIMELINE: A look back at Richard Gutierrez and Sarah Lahbati's relationship

By Melanie Uson Published Mar 02, 2024 9:28 am

Sarah Lahbati has officially confirmed her split with her husband Richard Gutierrez.

The actress made the statement in her interview with ABS-CBN News on March 1 where she was asked if she's currently single.

"I mean there's nothing to hide. I think [it's] pretty clear to the public, both of us. I think," she told the outlet. She further shared that she moved out from their house in January and that they share duties in taking care of their children Zion and Kai.

From being an on-screen love team to being real-life partners, Sarah and Richard’s story is undeniably one of those that people call “relationship goals.”  

Since making it official in 2012, the couple has documented their adventures both locally and abroad, often including their sons Zion and Kai. They also frequently express their love and appreciation for each other on social media, whether it's for anniversaries, birthdays, or just any ordinary day.

Here’s a quick look back on their love story: 

June 2012: First meeting
The couple's travels in 2012.

Richard and Sarah first worked together in the GMA TV series Makapiling Kang Muli where they played Martin and Graciella. Prior to the premiere of the series, Sarah—who had just started her showbiz career then—admitted in a previous interview that she had a crush on Richard, saying that she would want to work with him as her leading man. 

August 2012: It's official 

During her guest appearance on late night show Tonight With Arnold Clavio, Sarah confirmed their romance, sharing stories about their travels together in France and Switzerland—where she was born and raised. She also shared that time their endearment to each other was “Halma.” 

On ASAP’s 2019 episode, Sarah revealed that she was courted by Richard while working in the teleserye, and officially dated by the end of the show. 

“Nililigawan ako ni Chard sa set pati si mommy, talagang he made an effort; Nung dumadalaw si daddy dito sa Pilipinas talagang nagpakilala siya,” she shared. 

January 2013: Rumors about their pregnancy surfaced 

Less than a year after making their relationship public, the couple faced pregnancy rumors. Back then, Sarah decided to return to Switzerland to study amid her contract issues with GMA. And despite explaining her departure both from the Philippines and social media, rumors of her being pregnant still circulated, which Richard dismissed. 

In November of that same year, Richard was asked again about the months-long pregnancy rumors as well as marriage plans with Sarah, where he said they would address the issues “at the right time.” 

“Abangan niyo na lang. Right now, marami ngang nangyayari sa buhay namin ni Sarah. I think there will be a perfect time sa kung ano man yung inaabangan ninyong sasagutin namin,” he previously said. “We are not denying nor confirming it.”

June 2014: Introducing Zion, their first son 

Sarah took to Instagram to announce that they have welcomed Zion, their first son, over a month since she gave birth on April 29. 

“Extremely happy to announce the new member of our family, baby Zion,” she wrote in her Instagram post on June 1, 2014. 

On the same day, Richard also admitted in their family reality show It Takes Gutz to Be a Gutierrez that he is a “proud father to Zion.” 

"The main reason why I didn't want to announce that I'm having a baby with Sarah is that we didn't want to make Sarah's pregnancy a tabloid circus,” he previously said. “We get to share baby Zion with everyone on our own terms." 

March 2017: ‘I'm marrying my best friend’ 

Five years since they started dating, Richard popped the question during their “winter wonderland” vacation in Zermatt, Switzerland.

“The stars aligned in the universe and this happened. I'm marrying my best friend,” Sarah wrote in her Instagram post in July 2017. 

For his part, Richard wrote: “I love you and I can't wait to start this new chapter of our lives together.” 

September 2017: Sarah and Richard announce baby No. 2 

Following the announcement of their engagement, the couple shared exciting news that they will be having a second son, Kai, who they welcomed in March 2018. 

“We are thrilled to announce that our little family is growing. Zion is about to be a kuya!!!!! So excited for the future. Lord, thank you for protecting us,” she previously wrote. Since then, the growing family has been making fond memories together by traveling—which the couple loved ever since they started dating. 

October 2019: The couple bares wedding details 

After being engaged for over two years while growing their family, the couple shared their details about their wedding in October 2019, revealing that the ceremony will be held in Manila in March 2020. 

“We chose March because we got engaged in March. Kai (their second son) was born in March. March is a very special month for us, so we felt March would be right to get married," they explained during the press conference

March 2020: The couple finally tied the knot 
The couple's intimate wedding ceremony in March 2020.

Initially, the couple planned to have a grand wedding, but with the threat and restrictions brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, the couple decided to postpone. Two days later, they pushed through with their wedding in an intimate ceremony on March 14, 2020 in Taguig. 

The civil wedding was attended by the couple’s nearest and dearest as part of the safety guidelines back then at the height of the pandemic.  

Late-October 2023: Split rumors surface 
Richard with his sons Zion and Kai in the last Halloween weekend.

Since admitting their relationship in 2012, the two have been showy on their social media pages with their recent travels, Halloween costumes, parties, and other momentous events of their lives.  

Eagle-eyed netizens noticed that the two unusually seldom posted each other, with their latest appearance together being at Maja and Rambo Nuñez’s wedding in July. In the past weeks, the two separately posted photos of their bonding with their children, like the recent Halloween weekend celebration. 

Sarah also celebrated her 30th birthday on Oct. 9 in Siargao with her family and kids but without Richard. The latter also went solo last ABS-CBN Ball and the recently concluded Opulence Halloween Ball

December 7, 2023: Annabelle Rama breaks silence on Richard-Sarah split 

Richard's mom, Annabelle, revealed that Richard had been staying with her for a month at that time.

“Si Richard, nasa bahay ko ngayon, one month na," she revealed in her interview with ABS-CBN News. "Pero unti-unti siyang lumilipat ng gamit sa Alabang. Lilipat na siya after Christmas." 

She, however, remained tight-lipped on whether her son and her daughter-in-law have broken up.

"Hindi pa ko pwede magsalita eh, pero sasabihin ko sa'yo, si Richard na sa akin ngayon," she said, adding that the couple's children, Zion and Kai, are living with Richard at the moment. 

Annabelle also revealed her current relationship with her daughter-in-law Sarah, saying, "Hindi ko siya nakakausap. Wala akong time makipag-usap sa kanila." 

When asked about the blind items seemingly pertaining to Sarah, she said that his son has been busy working, while the former has only been busy “wasting money.” 

"Nakikita mo naman 'di ba?" she began. "Nakikita mo naman, hindi mo na kailangang magsalita pa. Nakikita mo na 'yan. Si Richard trabaho nang trabaho, 'yung isa nagwawaldas ng pera. 'Yun lang ang masasabi ko diyan,” she said. 

"Mahirap para sa kaniya, kasi una, trabaho siya nang trabaho. Wala siyang ibang ginawa kundi magtrabaho. Pagdating niya sa Manila, hindi niya alam kung bakit nagkaroon ng gulo," she continued. 

"Maghintay na lang kayo kasi malalaman niyo rin. Not now,” she said. Annabelle also denied her involvement in the rumored split.

December 18, 2023: Richard and Sarah's parents' cryptic posts

Both Sarah's father, Abdel Lahbati, and Richard's mother, Annabelle Rama, have shared cryptic comments online and cautioned their followers against a certain "fake news."

Annabelle posted a previous conversation with her Instagram followers last Sunday, Dec. 17 where the actress pointed out that the "fake news" that was allegedly pushed by a certain "inggitera" wasn't worth her time.

Without mentioning names, Annabelle claimed that those people would undoubtedly "die of jealousy."

“Hindi ko na babanggitin ang inggetera, mamatay ka sa inggit dahil alam ng tao kung ano ang totoo, matatalino ang taong bayan."

Meanwhile, eagle-eyed social media users also noticed Abdel's post accusing a certain someone of "spending money to spread fake news."

"Until now we're just quite ignoring some barking dogs. But someone doesn't want to stop talking about this issue, she's even spending money to spread fake news, we choose to spend money to enjoy our life," he wrote alongside a photo of barking dogs meme.

January 2024: Unfollowing on Instagram, Sarah's new home

On January 9, the two each unfollowed each other on Instagram, further fueling split rumors. The following day, Sarah shared some snaps of her new place on Instagram, giving a look at a portion of its interiors as well as its pool area.

“Switching up the mood for 2024,” she wrote in the caption as she thanked a relocation services company for “efficiently helping [her] with moving.”

February 2024: Former couple not on speaking terms, co-parenting setup

Sarah made the revelation during her interview with Frontline Pilipinas, confirming that she is currently on a co-parenting set-up with Richard for their sons, Zion and Kai. 

“It’s not easy on any child but I’m here for them, and they’re better,” she said. 

“Of course, it’s not ideal for the children—let's go back to the kids,” she added. “But that’s life, they’ll be fine.” 

She was then asked if she's currently talking with Richard, to which she straight-up answered, “No.” 

“We’re good at parenting. We are there for the kids. That’s all I’m gonna say,” the actress said. Prior to this, Sarah's mom, Esther Lahbati first revealed their co-parenting setup in December.