Yamaguchi said that due to his busy schedule, he had left much of the responsibilities to care for their two sons and take care of the household to his ex-wife. Even when he was off work, he would head out for drinks with friends or go surfing rather than stay at home to help out. Especially after the whole family had moved to Kamakura in 2004, he could not spend a lot of time at home and would only return there twice or thrice per week in recent years. Although they moved back to Tokyo later on, things still did not improve as Yamaguchi would go out for meals and drinks with staff members, thinking that he could get back home earlier than when his house was at Kamakura. As such, this took a toll on his ex-wife which he had grossly underestimated. At times when she needed his support, he was always absent. All this while, there had been quarrels over this issue but she only brought up the topic of divorce for the first time three years ago. In order to give each other some space and time to consider the future, they started living apart since April this year. However, they still decided to go their separate ways in the end although they were apologetic towards their sons about it.
When asked about the terms for the divorce, Yamaguchi revealed that based on his current schedule, it is difficult for him to be taking care of the children. Besides, his ex-wife had been the one who was taking care of them full time so the custody of the kids will be held by her. However, he will bear all costs relating to the boys especially since she had been a housewife all this while and had little savings. From now on, there are many decisions to be made such as deciding on where the children will live with their mother so he will continue to support them in whatever ways he can. As for alimony, his ex-wife did not want any since they parted on amicable terms and it was for the long-term good of the children anyway. In addition, she even called him three times today before the press conference to express support and ask if he was OK doing it alone which he was very thankful for.
With response to a question asking if the eye injury he suffered last month was due to the marital problem, Yamaguchi who had appeared in a bandage then on TV, denied it and said that he had put on sunglasses while riding a bicycle and fell so hard onto the ground that he sustained the injury, If he had been inflicted with such a bad injury by his ex-wife, he would have initiated divorce then. Although there were rumours swirling then that he was beaten up, Yamaguchi said that he wouldn't have dared to continue appearing on TV if that was true. Anyway, if he had stayed away, that would have caused more speculation so he had discussed it with his agency and went ahead to appear on TV while wearing the bandage on his eye.
As for how his sons reacted to the news of their parents' divorce, Yamaguchi revealed that his ex-wife had broken the news to them first. His elder son who is 8 years old, commented then that he didn't like it when his mother was sad so if the split makes them happy, he could understand why they were doing it. Before the divorce, he had tried to spend as much time with the boys during the summer vacation in July as they are attending a school camp this month.
As for his fellow TOKIO members, Yamaguchi revealed that he did bring up the likelihood of him getting divorced about three years ago when they were chit-chatting. He told them on 3 August that the divorce was going to be finalised. As they had met his family before, they were encouraging upon hearing the news and said that if it works out in the interests for his ex-wife and kids, it's not such a bad thing after all. He also said that his members were quite amazed that he got married then and that he had gone through some good changes as well during this period which he attributed to his ex-wife and his fellow members. He was also thankful for their support and belief that he will get on fine after this episode. Yamaguchi also apologised to fans for causing them to be worried over this sudden announcement but promised to work hard as usual and asked for their continued support.
As Yamaguchi was the first active Johnny's Jimusho artiste to get divorced and to hold a press conference about it, he was asked by the reporters why he decided to go ahead. Yamaguchi commented as he had gone public personally during TOKIO's concert when he got married, he wanted to be able to use his own words to talk about the divorce rather than rely on a fax statement only. Although he felt odd for being the No.1 in this regard, he thanked the media for spending their time to come to the press conference. He also called upon everyone to give his ex-wife and children personal space since she is not a celebrity and his children are already at the age when they understand what is going on so he hopes that their lives will not be affected going forward.
Sources: Oricon 1 / Tokyo Sports Web / Oricon 2 / Sanspo