This is nothing new, of course, as the McDermotts have never been great about keeping their marital strife under wraps.
At times, they’ve delighted in airing their dirty laundry in public, such as when they made a reality show in the wake of Dean’s cheating scandal.
(A cheating scandal that many still believe the couple fabricated for publicity reasons.)
And there are other times when they’ve attempted to keep their problems to themselves.
Unfortunately, Tori and Dean have made a brand out of being candid about every aspect of their lives, so it’s difficult for them to step away from the spotlight when they feel that the glare is too intense.
In recent weeks, we’ve learned that Tori has met with a divorce attorney and that she and Dean have been living “separate lives.”
(Among other things, Tori has admitted that the couple no longer shares a bed.)
For his part, Dean has been spotted without his wedding ring, a fact that he later explained by claiming that he’d simply misplaced it.
But perhaps the surest sign that Tori and Dean have separated came earlier this week when Spelling shared her family’s annual Christmas card on social media.
“It’s that time again. And it’s a winter wonderland at my house,” Spelling captioned the post on Instagram.
“This is a card our friends and family will opening and putting on display! #familyiseverything.”
Many took the photo as Tori’s way of confirming that she and Dean have decided to go their separate ways.
When asked about her husband’s absence, however, Spelling explained that McDermott couldn’t participate in the shoot because he’s “filming his new feature film in Canada.
But a source tells People magazine, that despite Tori’s claims that all is well, she and Dean are “not in a good place and have been evaluating their relationship.”
“It’s been very chilly between them for a long time. They have been through the wringer before, but they’ve always gotten out of it,” says the insider.
“Tori still has major trust issues. Part of their relationship was never fully repaired after he was unfaithful,” the source continues.
“They’ve been living separate lives. They will still have family meals and occasional outings, but it’s for the kids.”
The insider adds that this strife is nothing new, and the situation between the actors has “been bad for a really long time, over a year for sure.”
“But Tori doesn’t want to break up the family,” the source continues.
“She thinks the kids need their dad. These are their fundamental years and they’ve fought to stay together for the kids.”
And it seems the situation is complicated by the fact that Tori believes Dean is an excellent father, as well as her awareness that her trust issues stem largely from misdeeds that took place several years ago.
“Dean has a really, really good bond with the kids. He’s been a stabilizing force for them,” she adds.
“Tori still has major trust issues with Dean. And he’s like, ‘We moved on from that.’ It’s complicated and a very toxic and rocky situation.”
The insider says that Tori has been “keeping to herself more as the situation with Dean continues to be so up in the air,” and while she’s confirmed to her inner circle that she’s separated, she continues to insist to others that he’s simply been working a lot.
“It’s true he has been in Canada filming,” the source says.
“But [for Tori] being alone with five kids and expected to handle all the day-to-day responsibilities that come along with that really took a big toll on their relationship.”
“Dean must be ‘working’ out of town and couldn’t get home in time for the annual Christmas picture,” one fan commented on Tori’s latest post.
“Fact: @imdeanmcdermott was filming his new feature film in Canada,” Spelling responded.
These days, Dean is back in LA, but it’s unclear exactly when he returned.
And according to a new report from Us Weekly, Dean has been struggling to conceal his frustrations with his home life.
McDermott allegedly got into a fist fight during a casual rec league hockey game this week.
While the fight was quickly broken up, witnesses say they were shocked by the 55-year-old’s aggression.
We’ll have further updates on this developing story as more information becomes available.