From Costars to Newlyweds and Everything in Between: Miley & Liam's Ups and Downs in Photos
THE EARLY DAYS
Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth met way back in 2009 on the set of their Nicholas Sparks romance movie The Last Song. Shortly after filming wrapped, the two all but confirmed their romance when they had a PDA-filled goodbye at the airport. Alex Emanuel, who watched their "full-on make out," said the ultra-romantic exchange "was like a scene out of an old movie where the guy's getting on a train and they're saying their goodbyes."
ON AND OFF
But it wasn't all smooth sailing and epic, big-screen-worthy goodbyes: The two briefly split in August 2010 after months of breakup rumors – but less than one month later, they were back to sharing cuddles and whispers around L.A.
PUT A RING ON IT
The over-the-top gestures just kept coming! In 2012, after three years as a couple, a 22-year-old Hemsworth popped the question to a 19-year-old Cyrus with a 3.5-carat ring from Neil Lane. "I'm so happy to be engaged and look forward to a life of happiness with Liam," Cyrus told PEOPLE at the time.
The engagement wasn't all about cake tastings and dress fittings, however: the two were plagued by rumors of an impending breakup throughout. The chatter was only fueled when the stars postponed their wedding, Cyrus took her engagement ring off (and put it back on) and in a final kiss of death move, they unfollowed each other on Twitter. Despite it all, the pair insisted things were still moving forward.
LET'S CALL THE WHOLE THING OFF
But as they say, there's no smoke without fire. Those months of rumors came to a head in September 2013 when the couple confirmed that their engagement had come to an end. And, as many suspected, the split had been a long time coming: Cyrus discussed writing "Drive," a breakup anthem on her album Bangerz, as early as Valentine's Day of that year.
In the aftermath of their breakup, Cyrus admitted 19 was probably too young to be engaged, and that she was looking forward to a stress-free future: "Now, I just feel like I can actually be happy." That included a rumored dalliance with Benji Madden and a relationship with Patrick Schwarzenegger. And she wasn't the only one rebounding – Hemsworth was spotted locking lips with Mexican singer-actress Eiza Gonzalez weeks after the split.
CAN'T LET GO
But as the months went by following their breakup, it seemed the two couldn't resist each other. A source told PEOPLE that "despite them constantly fighting before the split, Miley always said Liam is the love of her life," while Liam told Men's Fitness, "We were together five years, so I don't think those feelings will ever change."
And it seems those feelings really haven't changed: just a few days after New Year's Eve, the stars were spotted at the Falls Music Festival in Australia, and based on the kisses they were sharing, it was obvious they were there as more than friends. The pair even hung with Liam's older brother Chris and his wife, Elsa Pataky, too.
RETURN OF THE BLING
Of course, they could just be friendly exes – but do friendly exes wear their old engagement rings? Nope: PEOPLE confirmed that the two are officially back on! "Miley is beyond happy to be engaged to Liam again," a source tells PEOPLE. "It might seem sudden, but they have been very close for the past few months."
MEETING THE PARENTS (AGAIN)
In April 2016, Cyrus and Hemsworth were spotted with Hemsworth's parents Craig and Leonie at lunch in Byron Bay, Australia. Although the couple didn't show signs of PDA, Cyrus was wearing the 3.5-carat engagement ring she'd received before they split in 2013. Later that day, the singer was pictured shopping at a local boutique with Hemsworth's sister-in-law, Elsa Pataky.
RETURN OF THE BLING, PART TWO
On July 25, the singer uploaded an Instagram photo showing herself – with a new addition to her ring finger – lounging at the pool with her friend. The ring, a gold band that appears to be set with small diamonds, hints at an engagement, as the two have been spending a lot of time together: dinner with Hemsworth's parents, date nights and spending the holidays together.
SWEET BIRTHDAY WISHES
All together now: aww! On Cyrus' 24th birthday back in November, Hemsworth gifted his "little angel" a brightly adorned gift box and honored his fiancée on social media: "Happiest birthday to my favorite little angel!" The singer responded on Instagram, writing: "Best bday evaaaaaa!!!!!!! Thank you my loooooove."
It's a very Cyrus Christmas! Hemsworth joined in on the holiday fun by joining the performer and her family for a special celebration a few days before Dec. 25.
A KISS TO REMEMBER
We can hardly contain our excitement either: Cyrus and Hemsworth welcomed 2017 with a passionate kiss — complete with a lit-up "Happy New Year" backdrop.
It was Cyrus' turn to celebrate her leading man as he turned 27 — with none other than a weed-themed party. "Happiest birthday EVER to my favorite being EVER EVER EVER!" Cyrus captioned the photo. "You have been my best friend since the day we met … I am beyond lucky to share sooooo [many] animals with you!!! I love you @liamhemsworth."
In a revealing interview with Billboard, Cyrus revealed that following their breakup she was "so immersed in work" to find herself again. "I needed to change so much. And changing with someone else not changing like that is too hard," Cyrus recalled. "Suddenly you're like, 'I don't recognize you anymore.' We had to refall for each other." And they did just that: The couple share a Malibu property with their seven dogs, two pigs and two miniature horses.
TO WED OR NOT TO WED
In a September 2017 interview with The Sun on Sunday newspaper, Cyrus said she wasn't yet "envisioning marriage." She explained: "I hope I get to live a little bit more. I have too much living to do ... Three years ago, if you’d asked me if I’d be here, this happy with this man, I’d have been stunned. I’m just riding this out. In some relationships, you lose yourself by being with someone else. Actually, it made me find myself more. I have no idea what the next three years will bring, but if it’s possible to get even happier, I’ll take it."
SHUTTING DOWN RUMORS
Rumors circulated in early 2018 that the couple had decided get married to ring in the new year, but Hemsworth's older brother Chris confirmed shortly after that Cyrus was "not officially" a member of the family — yet.
The Thor: Ragnarok actor joked to SiriusXM that he often tries to get the Disney Channel alum to sing. "I always just expected her to put on a show and bang a few songs out but she never does ... I’m insisting constantly. I’m like, ‘When’s the performance coming?’ But she’s just a lot of fun.”
TURNING 26 AFTER TRAGEDY
After the house Cyrus and Hemsworth shared burned down during the devastating California fires in November 2018, the singer and her family celebrated her 26th birthday with cake and drinks. “Happy birthday to my sweet girl,” the 28-year-old Hunger Games star wrote of the photo that showed her surrounded by colorful balloons as she held their dog. “You’re more precious than ever. So thankful to have you in my life.”
MR. AND MRS. HEMSWORTH
Ahead of Christmas 2018, on Sunday, Dec. 23, Hemsworth's close friend Conrad Carr posted on his Instagram story a video of the actor and his brothers, Chris and Luke, doing a “shotski,” with Mr. and Mrs. balloons in the background. Another photo showed Cyrus and Hemsworth — dressed in traditional white and a tux — in front of cake and cupcakes, with the singer’s mom Tish in the frame.
Cyrus shared black-and-white portraits from her and Hemsworth's nuptials on Instagram, along with the caption: "12.23.18."
On Aug. 10, Cyrus' rep exclusively confirmed to PEOPLE that the couple had split. Liam and Miley have agreed to separate at this time,” the rep said in a statement. "Ever-evolving, changing as partners and individuals, they have decided this is what’s best while they both focus on themselves and careers. They still remain dedicated parents to all of their animals they share while lovingly taking this time apart. Please respect their process and privacy."