Last week Cheryl and Liam Payne were pictured in public together for the first time since their split three years ago – and rumours are flying that they may be getting back together. Newly single Liam – who ended his engagement to model Maya Henry last month – and Cheryl were seen in Liam’s native Wolverhampton after attending a family party. Cheryl, wearing a grey sleeveless hoodie, maxi pink tulle skirt and white boots, was pictured beside Liam getting into her car.
“Cheryl and Liam have been getting close again – they’re seeing each other a few times a week now,” an insider tells heat. “Since Liam split from Maya, he’s been practically inseparable from Cheryl and Bear.”
Liam, 27, recently spoke about how he and Cheryl, 38, were “closer than they had ever been”, praising his ex in an interview. “Cheryl is literally the best person to co-parent with,” he said. And, while it could look like the couple are feeling nostalgic for their relationship, our source tells us Cheryl’s friends are warning her off revisiting the past.
“They’re telling her she’d be silly to go there – they’re worried she could fall for Liam all over again,” our insider says. “She’s told people not to worry, but at the same time, it’s clear how much she’s loving having so much family time again. After being single for the past few years and shouldering a lot of the parenting and the planning, she’s thrilled to have Liam around, especially for Bear’s sake.”
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The source continues, “Cheryl has always been a steadying influence in Liam’s life. She’s a lot more mature than him, and when it comes to the grown-up stuff and career things, he’s just in awe of that. The big fear, though, for Cheryl’s inner circle is that, while Liam is very present right now, he does have a tendency to get bored. Once the world fully opens up again, he may be off working all over the world like he did when Bear was a baby, leaving Cheryl alone again.”
Our insider adds that Cheryl has found it difficult seeing Liam – who spent much of his son’s first year away from him while he promoted his solo career – with other women over the last couple of years, and she has wondered if they could have had a brother or sister for Bear if they hadn’t split. Last year, the broody star even revealed that she was considering using a sperm donor to make her family bigger.
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“It’s been a hard time for Cheryl, especially as she would love to give Bear siblings – he’s an only child, so it’s always on her mind,” says the source. “It’s no surprise that she’s playing it out in her head, particularly now that she and Liam seem to get on better than they did back then.”
Liam has been through his own struggles this past year, recently admitting he had issues with alcohol – in early June he revealed he had been sober for a month and our insider says Cheryl and Bear provide an anchor for him. “For Liam, his one saviour through this has been Bear,” we’re told. “He has made a huge effort to step up and be the father that Bear deserves, moving closer to him, so he’s just down the road and making him the big priority.”
The insider adds, “Liam’s in a place now where he’s really prioritised what’s important and Cheryl is just hoping this will last, no matter what happens between them.”
Read more in the latest issue of heat magazine – OUT NOW.