Although the separation might come as a shock to citizens used to seeing the first family together inside the iconic Washington, D.C. landmark, Trump implied to PEOPLE last year that he wasn’t fixated on his family joining him in the White House — and that young Barron enjoys his life in New York.
When asked whether a then 9-year-old Barron was excited about possibly living in the White House, Trump replied, “not so much that.”
“He does love New York and he loves his school. Not so much living in the White House,” he continued. “He does like what he’s got right now. That would be a whole change of life. But when he hears I’m going to help people that solves the problem.”
PEOPLE confirmed that Melania and Barron will not join Trump in the White House for at least six months — after Barron finishes the school year — and multiple sources tell PEOPLE that the first lady-to-be is not interested to live in the White House full-time after that, and instead would prefer to just go to Washington as needed.
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“Melania wants to stay in New York while her son goes to school,” a Palm Beach source recently PEOPLE. “I don’t know if she will ever live away from New York full time, especially with her son in school there. She loves her home in Manhattan and her independent life.”
Even so, Trump told PEOPLE last year that Melania was “excited” by how well he’s done on the campaign.
“She’s a very outstanding person and woman and she’s very much involved in women’s issues and she wants to be involved in women’s issues and she’s very excited about this.”
However, sources say Melania has made it clear that Barron is her top priority, and as Trump himself said last year, Barron finds the idea of leaving New York for D.C. “a little scary,” even though he fully supports his father.
“I can help so many young people and that’s when he really starts to understand that it’s a good thing, not a bad thing, but it’s a little scary for him because he think he is going to be taken away from his friends,” he said. “He has a very good school in New York where he has a lot of friends. But I tell him if this happens, Daddy will help people, and can help children like him, and that makes him happy.”
“He’s a young boy who is 9 years old and he is strong and smart and he gets it,” he also said. “He sees it.”