Entertainment TV Bachelor in Paradise's Carly Waddell and Evan Bass Are Separating After 3 Years of Marriage "We will always cherish our time together," the reality stars, who share two kids, said in a joint statement By Aili Nahas Aili Nahas Aili Nahas is the West Coast Deputy News Editor at PEOPLE. She is also the TV deputy in Los Angeles as well as the Weddings Editor. Aili has spent nearly two decades in the entertainment industry and 12 years at PEOPLE. People Editorial Guidelines Published on December 23, 2020 02:00 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Evan Bass and Carly Waddell. Photo: Michael Tullberg/Getty Images It's a sad day for Bachelor Nation. Carly Waddell and Evan Bass, who met on Bachelor in Paradise in 2016, announced Wednesday that they are separating after three years of marriage and two kids together. "We have made the difficult decision to separate," the former couple said in a joint statement. "We will always cherish our time together and continue to have the utmost respect for one another as we focus on what's best for the future of our family. We greatly appreciate everyone's love and support and kindly ask that you please respect our family’s privacy as we navigate through this." Waddell, 35, and Bass, 38, welcomed their son Charles "Charlie" Wolf last November and are also parents to daughter Isabella "Bella" Evelyn, 2. (Bass is also dad to three older sons from his previous marriage.) Evan Bass and Carly Waddell with their kids. Carly Waddell/Instagram All the Celebrity Couples Who've Called It Quits in 2020 The split will no doubt come as a shock to fans of the longtime couple, who seemed to defy the odds of traditional Bachelor romances, though they had been largely absent from each other's social media accounts in recent weeks. When they first met on the beach while filming Paradise, alums Bass (who competed for JoJo Fletcher's heart on The Bachelorette) and Waddell (from Chris Soules' season of The Bachelor) appeared to be an unlikely duo. "It was just this thing that was a roller coaster," Waddell told Glamour in 2016. "I broke up with him like five times!" Evan Bass and Carly Waddell Reveal Vasectomy Never Happened, Joke More Kids Could Lead to Split Eventually, the couple fell hard and Bass proposed on the season 3 finale of the show. Just before their wedding in Mexico the following year, attended by several Bachelor alums including close pals Jade and Tanner Tolbert, Nick Viall and Kaitlyn Bristowe, Waddell told PEOPLE that "everything happens for a reason." Continued Waddell: "It's been a long journey for me in Bachelor Nation, but I would do it a thousand times again. Because the next part is going to be bliss."