'Today' Contributor Jill Martin Blames Coronavirus for Split From Fiance Erik Brooks

When announcing her separation from Brooks, the TV personality admits that the pandemic has taken a toll on their long-distance relationship, but she still praises her ex as 'an amazing man.'

AceShowbiz - Coronavirus pandemic has cost Jill Martin her relationship. On Sunday, May 17, the "Today" lifestyle contributor broke the news that she and her fiance of one year, Erik Brooks, have decided to call it quits as she blamed COVID-19 for the end of their long-distance romance.

"This pandemic has taken a toll on so many aspects of life," shared the 44-year-old in a statement to the press, "it's such a difficult time for everyone. Erik is the most magnificent person, but with him living in Boston with his children and me living in New York, the distance just became too difficult for us to maintain the kind of relationship that's important to us both."

While she and Brooks are no longer together, Martin was still full of praise for the managing partner at a private equity firm. "He is an amazing man," the style expert gushed in her statement, "and I wish him nothing but the best."

Martin met Brooks on a dating app back in 2017. The two got engaged in May 2019 after he surprised her with a proposal during a trip to the Hamptons. After coronavirus broke out, the pair reportedly spent the first few weeks of quarantine at her house in the Hamptons. He, however, has since flown back to Boston to be with his children, and Page Six reported that she has been spotted without her engagement ring.

In late March, Martin opened up on "Today" about the extra stress lockdown brought onto couples. "Erik and I have never spent so much concentrated time together, we've been here basically alone for three weeks 24/7…and like many couples we've had a couple of blow ups," she confessed. "I'd would say they were kind of major blow ups, it was kind of tough…These are unprecedented times."

In regards to Brooks' children from a previous relationship, Martin talked about her struggle to be accepted by the three of them during the 3rd Hour of "Today" in July 2019. At the time, she recalled the time Brooks' daughter Bella showed how she felt about her father's fiancee joining them on a family vacation.

"I get there and I unpack my things in the closet," Martin recounted. "I went for lunch; I get back (and) by the door is my suitcase with everything beautifully packed - and she packed my stuff and was like, 'See ya!' " On how she reacted to the situation, she confessed, "I was so upset, I was hysterical crying." The two of them have since become "the best of friends now." She added, "We really talk through it now…she's awesome."

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