Pushing through. The Kardashian family is “finding a way to move forward” amid Tristan Thompson’s paternity drama — and cheating scandal — a source exclusively tells Us Weekly.
“The Kardashians aren’t taking the news lightly,” the insider says after Thompson, 30, confirmed publicly on Monday, January 3, that he is the father of Maralee Nichols’ newborn son.
Last month, the NBA player made headlines after Nichols claimed that her son, who Us confirmed was born on December 1, was fathered by Thompson while he was still dating Khloé Kardashian in the spring of 2021.
Thompson and Nichols have been in a child support battle since June 2021 — with the former Cleveland Cavaliers player requesting proof of paternity on two separate occasions.
Khloé’s family “really didn’t know who to believe” as the allegations came to light, the source tells Us, noting that Thompson has cheated on the Good American cofounder, 37, multiple times in the past.
“When he posted about the results, it really just confirmed Maralee’s side of the story,” the insider says, explaining that the former Keeping Up With the Kardashians stars won’t ever completely cut the athlete out because he shares 3-year-old daughter True with the Revenge Body host. “He can’t just disappear from their lives,” the source adds.
The Kardashians are “on the road to accepting what he’s done,” the insider tells Us, noting, “It will take some time.”
Amid Thompson and Nichols’ child support lawsuit, the fitness model released a statement detailing her relationship with the professional basketball player and when it allegedly started.
“I met Tristan in 2020 at a party at his home in Encino, California. He told me he was single and coparenting,” she claimed in the statement to Us on December 17. “I would never have gotten involved with Tristan if I thought he was in a relationship.”
Nichols went on to say that she allegedly “communicated daily” and would “see each other several times a month,” including Christmas in 2020, New Years and his birthday in March 2021.
The new mom claimed that she “did not ask Tristan for any money, nor did I accept any money that was offered to me” after she told Thompson that she was pregnant. The baby boy is the Canada native’s third child. Prior to True’s birth, Thompson and ex Jordan Craig welcomed son, Prince, now 5.
Following the birth of their son last month, Nichols said she is “choosing to embrace being a mother and doing the best I can for my son.” The former personal trainer added that she does not “want a romantic relationship with Tristan. My goal is to raise our son in a safe, healthy, loving and private environment.”
Nearly one month later, Thompson released a social media statement, confirming for the first time that he fathered Nichols’ son while he was in a relationship with Khloé. Us confirmed in June 2021 that he and the Strong Looks Better Naked author had split for good following a reconciliation in August 2020.
“Today, paternity test results reveal that I fathered a child with Maralee Nichols. I take full responsibility for my actions,” the Sacramento Kings player wrote via Instagram Stories on Monday. “Now that paternity has been established, I look forward to amicably raising our son.”
He also apologized to the reality star, writing, “Khloé, you don’t deserve this. You don’t deserve the heartache and humiliation I have caused you. You don’t deserve the way I have treated you over the years. My actions certainly have not lined up with the way I view you. I have the utmost respect and love for you. Regardless of what you may think. Again, I am so incredibly sorry.”
With reporting by Diana Cooper
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