There’s only one "you" in Penn Badgley’s life at the moment, and that’s his wife of three years, Domino Kirke. The Gossip Girl alum may shy away from the limelight, but his love story with Kirke is too beautiful not to share. Though it’s unclear when Kirke — who’s a musician, a doula, and the sister of actor Jemima Kirke — first met Badgley, it’s definitely clear that these boho Brooklynites are meant to be. Penn Badgley and Domino Kirke’s relationship timeline is seriously swoon-worthy, and luckily, it’s a very different love story than the one shared by Joe Goldberg and Love Quinn in season two of You.
He may be best known as "Lonely Boy" Dan Humphrey and the twisted Joe Goldberg, but Badgley is actually a musician himself, serving as the frontman of Brooklyn-based indie band MOTHXR. As Brooklyn dwellers and music lovers, Kirke and Badgley certainly share a lot in common, and they’re about to share a whole lot more. On Feb. 10, Kirke announced that she and Badgley are expecting their first child together, making Cassius (Kirke’s 10-year-old son from a previous relationship) a big brother. Here is the timeline of Badgley and Kirke’s relationship, from the beginning up until their exciting announcement.
They Were First Spotted Together In July 2014
Us Weekly sent out a new couple alert in the summer of 2014 when Badgley and Kirke were spotted looking cozy while out-and-about in New York City. According to a source, the duo was no longer a new item at that point, but it’s not clear how and when they first met. "They’ve been dating for awhile," the source said. "They have a number of mutual friends. It is a very mature and free relationship. Domino is a great girl for him, being a musician. Their interests align."
Kirke has admitted that she didn’t initially think the relationship would be too serious. "I was sort of getting used to being a single mom, maybe a little too used to it," she told Hey Mama soon after marrying Badgley. "I had a really good thing with my kid and we were like this little team. Penn and I were dating, but it wasn’t nearly as serious as it is now, of course. I didn’t think marriage was in the cards for us."
Badgley Made His Debut On Kirke’s Instagram In Sept. 2014
A few months after Us Weekly broke the news about their relationship, Kirke attended a MOTHXR show and shared a pic of Badgley performing on Instagram. She captioned the photo, "A giant goddess and this guy ❤️ #mothxr."
They Had A Courthouse Wedding In Feb. 2017
After a very quiet courtship — during which Kirke occasionally shared some photos of Badgley on her Insta, like when he visited her doula practice or when they attended the Women’s March in NYC together — they made things official. According to E! News, the two hit up a courthouse in Brooklyn on Feb. 27, 2017 to say "I do" in a small civil ceremony. Afterwards, the couple and their wedding party headed over to Brooklyn’s Maison May Dekalb restaurant to celebrate.
They Attended A Movie Screening In April 2017
The newlyweds stepped out for a New York City screening of 3 Generations in April 2017. They even snapped a photo with the film’s director, Gaby Dellal, who also happens to be Kirke’s aunt.
They Had A Formal Wedding Ceremony In June 2017
Just about three years after their first public outing, Badgley and Kirke followed up their civil ceremony with a second, more elaborate ceremony on June 24, 2017. The outdoor wedding took place in upstate New York under a tent on Kirke’s mother’s property in Lake Waccabuc.
When Hey Mama asked about her decision to have a second wedding, Kirke explained, "My first wedding was more of a civil ceremony with about 40 people that [were] able to join us in a pinch. The second one was more planned. Two hundred people came from all over the world. It just felt necessary to have both." Some of those 200 guests included A-listers like Zac Posen, Debra Messing, and Heidi Klum (but sadly, no Gossip Girl alums).
Kirke Made Her Debut On Badgley’s Instagram In Sept. 2017
Though Badgley rarely opens up about his relationship on social media, he did share a pic of Kirke’s forthcoming album, Beyond Waters, soon after their second wedding. "@dominokirke has released an album of gorgeous music that will stand the test of time," he captioned the photo. The supportive partner previously tweeted about Kirke’s music in 2015 after she released a new single, "Ordinary World."
They Attended the U.S. Open In Sept. 2019
The couple made a rare public appearance at the 2019 U.S. Open Tennis Championships in Sept. 2019, which they attended with Kirke’s son, Cassius. Just a few weeks later, People published an interview with Badgley, where he (very uncharacteristically) opened up about his romance with Kirk and how his Bahá’í faith influenced his relationship.
"I don’t think I could truly value human love until I developed divine love," Badgley explained to People. "[Domino and I] very much had a romantic beginning, and I think that you discover in marriage that what sustains a marriage for decades — there are less and less people who can tell us this — but I think it has something to do with [divine] love."
A month later, Kirke noted how naturally Badgley took to the role of stepdad. "He doesn’t have to be ‘dad’ so he can have more fun with [Cassius]," she told Us Weekly in Oct. 2019. "It’s really nice. The stepparent thing is definitely unchartered territory for me ’cause I didn’t grow up with one, but… he takes care of him really well."
Badgley Shared An Instagram For Kirke’s Birthday In Dec. 2019
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Happy birthday, Dom. A super-brief review of your invisible qualities: A truly radiant soul, you seem to spark alight almost everyone you meet, like a 99% success rate. It’s really impressive, and quite mysterious. You encourage others to be honest, and brave, and gentle, and expansive. Your great capacity for empathy is obvious, something anyone can get warm by like a glowing stove. Your desire to be of service to others is miraculous. It is in your DNA. In pictures as a very young child, you exude it—a great care and sweetness; an invitation. You make others happy by you. For me, it is a joy to witness you when you are happy. For you, I always hope to be a source of joy. I’m really glad we’re married.
Badgley got mushy once again for Kirke’s 36th birthday towards the end of 2019. He posted a cute video of Kirke in the snow on Instagram along with a super-sweet birthday message.
"Happy birthday, Dom," he wrote. "A super-brief review of your invisible qualities: A truly radiant soul, you seem to spark alight almost everyone you meet, like a 99% success rate. It’s really impressive, and quite mysterious. You encourage others to be honest, and brave, and gentle, and expansive. Your great capacity for empathy is obvious, something anyone can get warm by like a glowing stove. Your desire to be of service to others is miraculous. It is in your DNA. In pictures as a very young child, you exude it — a great care and sweetness; an invitation. You make others happy by you. For me, it is a joy to witness you when you are happy. For you, I always hope to be a source of joy. I’m really glad we’re married." My heart!
Kirke Announced Her Pregnancy In Feb. 2020
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On the road again… pregnancy after loss is a whole other thing. After two miscarriages in a row we were ready to call it. I stopped trusting my body and started to accept the fact that I was done. As a birth attendant, I’ve seen and heard it all. It takes everything I’ve got to detach lovingly from the losses I’ve been present for and be in my own experience. When I was pregnant at 25, I knew nothing. I had no community. I dove in blissfully unaware about birth and its mysteries. Now, with 10 years worth of experience to pull from, I treasure my birth community and the knowledge I have. You’re already teaching us how to stay in the day in a way we’ve never had to, little one. Thank you.
In an emotional Instagram post, Kirke shared that — after two miscarriages — she and Badgley were finally expecting their first child together. "When I was pregnant at 25, I knew nothing," Kirke confessed in the lengthy caption. "I had no community. I dove in blissfully unaware about birth and its mysteries. Now, with 10 years worth of experience to pull from, I treasure my birth community and the knowledge I have."
Congratulations to the expectant parents, and I hope their soon-to-be family of four experiences many more years of divine love together.
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