Michael Jackson announced he was divorcing his first wife, Lisa Marie Presley, in 1996. The news came after the couple had argued about having children. Years later Lisa Marie explained that she was not prepared to have children with Jackson at the time, prompting him to look elsewhere to get the children he desired so passionately.
Enter Debbie Rowe, a nurse the star had met whilst getting treatment from his dermatologist.
Debbie was a fan, and apparently had a crush on Jackson, so when word got around that he wanted to have children as soon as possible, Debbie was thrilled to be involved.
The pair went on to get married on November 14, 1996, just months after Jackson’s divorce from Lisa Marie, and it was then announced that Debbie was pregnant with their first child.
Michael Joseph Jackson II – now known as Prince Jackson – was born on February 13, 1997.
Shortly after the two kids’ births, Jackson and Debbie divorced in October of 1999.
Following the divorce, Debbie signed over the custody rights to both Prince and Paris to their father.
Years later Lisa Marie spoke out about her relationship with Jackson, and why they split.
She began by explaining: “Michael wasn’t a bad person, he didn’t know any better. I took it very personally, I felt I was disposable.”
On refusing to become a mother to his children, Lisa Marie said: “He would tell me, ‘If you’re not gonna do it, Debbie said she’ll do it.’ And we would get into arguments because that wasn’t how to handle it. But that’s how he knew how to handle it: ‘If you’re not going to do it, this person will. Are you going to do it or not?’”
She added: “I just wanted to make sure. I was looking into the future and I was thinking, ‘I don’t ever want to get into a custody battle with him.
“‘I don’t want to do this, I don’t want to go head to head with him so I need to make sure that everything around is good.’ I had children and I knew bringing children into certain circumstances you have to make sure that everything is safe and secure and ok.
“And I wanted too make sure he and I were really, really united because we were going to be up against so much.”