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TV host-actress Ruffa Gutierrez revealed in an exclusive interview with The Buzz on February 26 that her marriage to Turkish businessman Yilmaz Bektas was annulled on Friday, February 24, ABS-CBNNews.com reports. "Officially, I am single, and it’s a long overdue process," she is quoted as saying. "Kumbaga four years na ako nag-file, ngayon lang natapos. (I filed for annulment four years ago, and it only ended now.) Talagang my reaction is I’m very relieved. "
Their marriage was declared "null and void" because of Yilmaz's "psychological incapacity." Ruffa experienced domestic abuse at the hands of ex-husband Yilmaz; she is now Avon's ambassador for their Speak Out Against Domestic Violence campaign. "The real reason I left him [is] because all the time, he hits me, he abuses me, he tortures me," she said in a 2007 interview on Startalk.
She was granted sole custody of their two daughters, Lorin and Venice. She shared that she had already divulged the news of the annulment to both of them. “We had a heart-to-heart talk," she told The Buzz. I just said, ‘Lorin, Venice, the government said Mommy and Baba’s marriage is over.’ In-explain ko na lang sa kanila in a way that a seven- and an eight-year-old can understand."
She added that she was glad the case was finally over. “For me, I’m closing a chapter in my life. I’m putting that in the past. Now I have a chance to be happy again."
Despite being officially single, though, Ruffa stood by her previous statement that she was not ready to enter into another relationship. "Please stay away from me. Ayaw ko muna. (I don't want to [get into a relationship] yet.)"
For more on Ruffa, try these galleries and articles:
To learn more about annulment and other marriage-related legal topics, check these out:
(Photo courtesy of PEP.ph)