Why Katie Holmes will never be free of Tom Cruise

Two decades after they split, the actress fears she will never fully escape her toxic marriage


by heatworld |
Published on

If you were a purveyor of pop culture in the mid-noughties, you’ll remember it well. For us, it’s forever etched in our eyeballs as one of the most memorable, grandiose and downright potty declarations of love we have ever seen.

We are, of course, talking about the moment that Tom Cruise jumped on Oprah Winfrey’s couch with glee, and told the world just how in love he was with new girlfriend, Katie Holmes.

The year was 2005 – and, by all accounts, it’s the year that Katie’s life changed forever. Before then, the actress had achieved success in her own right as the star of Dawson’s Creek, but she wasn’t quite a household name. Yet, overnight, she became the most famous woman in the world, adored by Hollywood’s biggest movie star, and living out her teenage fantasy in the process. Less than a year later, the smitten pair welcomed their daughter, Suri – smiling broadly on the cover of Vanity Fair to debut her to the world.

Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise
Katie and Tom looked head over heels at the start of their romance in 2005 ©Jim Spellman/WireImage

And then, having previously told 17 magazine that she used to dream about marrying Tom Cruise, Katie did just that in November 2006, saying “I do” to the Top Gun star in a fairytale wedding ceremony in Italy – in a castle, no less – with the world’s eyes watching. For six years, the couple formerly known as TomKat were the golden couple of Hollywood.

But sadly, the dream became a nightmare. In 2012, Katie shocked the world by divorcing Tom and moving with Suri to New York City, with rumours soon spreading that she’d fled the clutches of Scientology. Tom, who was at that point at his most evangelical in his dedication to the controversial religion, later confessed that it had played a key part in the split, with insiders reporting that Katie did not want Suri to grow up under the Church’s auspices.

Katie was duly awarded primary custody of their daughter, with Tom agreeing to pay a rumoured £318,000 per year, plus expenses – including medical and educational costs. But, according to reports, there was a caveat – Katie was to sign an NDA, forbidding her from ever discussing her experiences within the Church of Scientology, or her relationship with Tom. And just like that, Katie’s life changed overnight again. She quickly disappeared from the spotlight, primarily dedicating her life to raising her daughter, and fitting in her career around that priority. As for dating, she embarked on some low-key romances, but – according to sources – she never quite recovered from the maelstrom that was her marriage and divorce from the most powerful man in Tinseltown. All these years later, we’re told, she’s still recovering from the whirlwind.

Katie Holmes
Katie today: “still dealing with the emotional fallout from her marriage” ©Raymond Hall/GC Images)

“Katie is still dealing with the emotional fallout from her marriage to Tom,” says an insider close to the 45 year old, who clearly went to great lengths following her divorce to live a far more low-key life. “He did such a number on her self-esteem, her ability to trust men, even on her ability to trust herself and her intuition. Plus, even when she finally had the courage to pull the plug, it was so harrowing to escape him. It’s no exaggeration to say she’d rather be single for the rest of her life than wind up with another guy like Tom. He was so controlling – she totally lost herself in that relationship and it took her years to recover. To this day, it still haunts her and it makes her afraid that, with one wrong choice, she could end up in the same sort of toxic relationship all over again.”

That isn’t to say that Katie hasn’t dated in the intervening years. In fact, from 2013 to 2019, she was involved in a six-year relationship with the actor Jamie Foxx – which they largely managed to keep private. Despite whispers of a romance first circulating in 2013, it wasn’t until 2015 that those rumours were even confirmed. They were then spotted together in 2018, looking much more comfortable to be seen together in public, before finally making their red carpet debut together at the Met Gala in 2019. However, they split soon after, with sources saying they were both too focused on their own families and careers to fully commit to one another. Katie later dated restaurateur Emilio Vitolo from 2020 to 2021, but reportedly decided they’d be better off as friends. Most recently, she was involved with Bobby Wooten, but they split in December 2022 after eight months together, with insiders saying that – with Suri as Katie’s priority – things were going “too fast” with the musician.

Having fallen so hard and fast for Tom and being enveloped into his world before she finally cut and ran, we’re told that Katie has never fully allowed herself to fully surrender to another relationship. What’s more, her commitment to Suri has always trumped everything else – which means any chances of finding lasting love again have been significantly hampered. We’re told the actress’s scars run deep, however much she purports to have moved on for good.

Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise
The couple were married for six years ©Anthony Harvey/Getty Images

“The scars that Tom left her with still haven’t fully healed,” says our source. “Katie isn’t totally shut off to love. If an opportunity comes her way, she embraces it, and she’s proven that a couple of times with Jamie and Emilio, among others. But there’s no denying that she’s wary of trusting her heart to anyone again. She’d love to meet the right guy, but she has a big wall up. Men will always come second to her daughter, and she sees nothing wrong with that.”

Still, with Suri having turned 18 in April, friends hope that Katie might be finally ready to let love fully in again. The mother and daughter still come as a tight knit package duo, but we’re told that Suri is equally keen to see her mum reprioritise herself, especially as they prepare to live apart for the first time ever when Suri goes to college. We’re told that everyone around Katie is gently encouraging her to take a step back, and are reassuring her that she no longer has to protect and prioritise her daughter with the singular focus and attention that she previously has. But having taken such pains to remove Suri from what she believed to be a negative environment – breaking up her high-profile marriage in the process – it’s going to take more time for her to fully heal and let the past go. Until then, we’re told, Tom will continue to have an influence on Katie’s life.

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