Was Nick Lachey Jealous of Jessica Simpson’s Fame?

At one point in time, Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey seemed like the perfect Hollywood couple. Their “reality” show, NewlyWeds, highlighted all the sweet moments in their relationship and depicted them as a fairytale couple. Yet as Simspon admits in her tell-all book, things weren’t always so romantic behind the scenes. And although she truly loved her former husband and continues to wish him the best, she admits that her career success took a toll on their relationship.

Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey
Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey | M. Caulfield/WireImage

How did Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey meet?

Simpson met Lachey when she was only 18 years old. (He was 24 at the time.) They met at a Christmas parade and were introduced to each other by their manager. The moment Simpson laid eyes on him, she knew they were destined to be together. Fortunately, Lachey felt the same way.

Jessica Simpson & Nick Lachey at the Vynyl Club in Hollywood, California
Jessica Simpson & Nick Lachey at the Vynyl Club in Hollywood, California | Steve Granitz/WireImage

“After we met,” he told People Magazine (via InStyle), “I found myself looking through the crowds for her all night.”

“The first time I ever heard her sing, I got chills,” he continued. “And I told the guys [in 98º], ‘I’m going to marry that girl one day.'”

In Simpson’s recently published memoir, Open Book, she talks about how respectful Lachey was as a boyfriend. During their first date (on a hotel rooftop), the singer-songwriter told the 98 degrees member that she wanted to wait until her wedding night to lose her virginity. And according to Simpson, he fully respected her wish.

At that moment, Simpson “knew in her heart that he was the man (she) was meant to marry.”

Jessica Simpson’s fame caused a rift in her relationship with Nick Lachey

Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey attend the 130th Running of the Kentucky Derby May 1, 2004 in Louisville, Kentucky
Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey attend the 130th Running of the Kentucky Derby May 1, 2004 in Louisville, Kentucky | Mike Simons/Getty Images

At the beginning of their relationship, Lachey was the more famous one because of his success in the boy band 98 degrees. At the time, Simpson was still ranking low on the charts and hadn’t found as much success. According to the “Irresistible” singer, this created a dynamic that worked for Lachey.

But the dynamic began to shift when Simpson’s songs started to rank much higher than his. Slowly but surely, Simpson became the star of their relationship while Lachey’s career fizzled out. This shift ultimately destroyed their romance.

Singers Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey arrive at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards
Singers Jessica Simpson and Nick Lachey arrive at the 2004 MTV Video Music Awards | Peter Kramer/Getty Images

RELATED: Jessica Simpson Admits to Having an ‘Affair’ During Her Marriage to Nick Lachey

“It breaks my heart that I couldn’t make Jessica happy. I wanted to be everything to my wife,” Lachey admitted to Rolling Stone (via Us Weekly.) “I wanted her to look at me with love in her eyes, the way she did at the beginning, and have her feel like I was the most wonderful, awe-inspiring man on the planet. And when that stopped, it was the worst feeling in the world.”

Jessica Simpson said her former husband wanted her to ‘need’ him

Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson
Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson | Theo Wargo/WireImage

According to Simpson’s memoir, Lachey was “proud” of her success, but “also wanted somebody who could make him feel like I did when I was nineteen years old, fawning all over him,” she writes. “I don’t think he understood how to have the kind of relationship where I didn’t need him to tell me what to do. It was not a happy time for us.”