Despite living separately, Hayden Panettiere is still involved in her daughter’s upbringing, a source tells PEOPLE.
The Nashville alumna shares 4-year-old daughter Kaya with ex-fiancé Wladimir Klitschko. Since their split last summer, Kaya is apparently living in the 42-year-old boxer’s native Ukraine for now, a source tells PEOPLE. And while their co-parenting schedule is unclear, the source says Panettiere, 29, does see her daughter, though she’s currently based in Los Angeles with her boyfriend Brian Hickerson.
“To say she never sees her daughter isn’t true,” the source says.
“Hayden has gone through changes since she had Kaya, and while some were not perfect, others have helped her grow,” the source adds. “She is trying to feel good about herself, her life, and how she wants to go forward.”
A rep for Panettiere did not respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Earlier this week, Us reported that Panettiere “hasn’t had much time” with Kaya lately. Though Panettiere has not publicly addressed the story, Hickerson spoke out on her behalf.
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“Hayden is actually on a family vacation right now with her daughter and the Champ, so don’t believe everything you read,” South Carolina native Hickerson told Access. “She’s a great mom.”
Panettiere seemingly confirmed the trip Thursday, tweeting a photo of a young girl (presumably Kaya) strapped into a car seat. “Sweet moments with sleeping babes,” she wrote.
It’s not the first time Hickerson has defended the couple. Last November, he disputed reports that Panettiere’s circle was worried about the new relationship, weeks after the pair was reportedly involved in a drunken altercation with Hickerson’s dad.
“Just to be clear, Hayden’s friends and family are not worried about her at all,” he told Access. “Hayden is happy and healthy and so is our relationship. That is all I will comment on so please respect my privacy. Have a great day.”