In the early days of Kathleen Buhle’s marriage to President Biden’s son Hunter, she felt so loved by a husband she described as “so mature, sophisticated and charming.” But about a decade later, a drinking problem landed him in rehab, and a relapse some seven years later would begin the slow unraveling of his marriage.
Buhle, who divorcedin 2017, she now tells her story in a new book called “If We Break: A Memoir of Marriage, Addiction, and Healing.” Her memoir details her ex-husband’s struggle with addiction and infidelities that she says led to her breakup.
“It was a very painful time for our entire family,” he told CBS News’ Anthony Mason of Hunter Biden’s battle with substance abuse.
The president’s second son has made headlines in recent years as investigators probe his overseas dealings. He has been open about his drug problems andlast year that he is cooperating with the federal investigation.
The US Attorney’s Office in Delaware opened an investigation intoin 2018. A subpoena obtained by CBS News revealed requests for bank records dating back to 2014, when he and Buhle were still married.
Buhle said he didn’t know much about his family’s finances and largely left them to Hunter Biden to handle.
“I had my head pretty much buried in the sand,” he said.
Buhle said she has spoken with investigators but has not been subpoenaed before a grand jury.
“Even if I was subpoenaed, I kept my head buried so deep in the sand, I honestly have nothing to contribute… But I was questioned because obviously I was married to him for 24 years,” she said.
She and Hunter Biden met in 1992 while working for the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. They married the following year and later had three daughters: Naomi, Finnegan, and Maisy.
“He treated me in a way that I haven’t been treated before,” Buhle said in an interview that aired Thursday on “CBS Mornings.”
Hunter Biden’s alcohol addiction escalated in 2003, when he went to a rehab center. In his book, Buhle describes finding evidence of his ex-husband’s drug use in his home, including a crack pipe he says he found after his brotherhe died in 2015.
“By that time, he was gone, when I found the crack pipe. Beau had just died. His addiction was as bad as it was,” she said. “He was escalating… he was just in a horrible place.”
Beau Biden’s death from brain cancer meant that Hunter Biden had lost his best friend, and Buhle had lost his closest ally.
“He was a brother to me,” she said. “I write in the book, he was someone who believed that he loved Hunter as much as I did.”
Buhle said she would soon find out that Hunter had cheated on her with dozens of women.
“You said you learned that there was not one Hunter or two Hunters, but many,” Mason said.
“Right. Well, don’t smoke crack,” Buhle said.
The breaking point came when her then 18-year-old daughter, Finnegan, called Buhle to come to the family therapist’s home. There, her daughters revealed that they found text messages on her phone showing that she was having an affair with Beau Biden’s widow, Hallie Biden.
“When I found out he was having an affair with our sister-in-law, at the time I had been losing my mind for the last year and a half trying to figure out what was going on. And in a weird way, it was like, ‘Finally, I don’t love him anymore. ‘” Buhle said.
CBS News reached out to Hunter Biden and Hallie Biden for comment, but they did not respond. The White House declined to comment on this report.
In her memoir, Buhle also talks about her battle with stage 3 colon cancer, which she was diagnosed with less than a year after filing for divorce.
Despite the breakup, she said she still sees the Bidens at family events and looks forward to her eldest daughter’s White House wedding in November.She will marry her fiancé, Peter Neal, on November 19.
“What I found out writing the book, the only thing that’s important to me is letting it go, my apologies,” Buhle said. “I know he feels bad about what he did. It’s hard to live with. So I hope he’s in a good place. I really do.”