Chip Gaines Admits To Oprah How Fixer Upper Fame Shifted His Personality

Chip Gaines is getting real with how fame has affected him and how his wife, Joanna Gaines, helped him through it all.

The Fixer Upper stars recently sat down with Oprah to chat about life as a married couple and also business partners.

Chip Gaines Admits How Fixer Upper Fame Changed Personality
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In the clip, Oprah asks how the couple’s fame has affected them and their choice to take a year off their popular show that ended in April of 2018.

“I have discovered that fame is just, your life is the same, you’re the same, and everybody has an idea of what that is, it’s just more people know your name. And I think if you don’t know who you are when the fame thing hits then you lose yourself,” Oprah said.

Chip, 46, quickly answered, crediting his wife of 18 years: “I want to speak on Jo’s behalf, because she would never say things like this, but she is so incredibly wise, so incredibly grounded — all the things that you just described, is who Joanna is.”

Chip Gaines Admits How Fixer Upper Fame Changed Personality
Image via Shutterstock

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“Really what happened — and was the truth for Jo and I — was it was no big deal for her, but for me to become famous, I lost a part of myself that was really… it was sad,” he admits.

“I would say it took me a year or two while I was still filming to try to grapple with what exactly it was that I was losing.”

He continued on, adding how the year they spent away from the public was time for he and Joanna to “hunker down and really kind of try to unpack what it was about fame that seemed so incompatible with my personality.”

Chip Gaines Admits How Fixer Upper Fame Changed Personality
Image via Shutterstock

“TV was a funny thing for me. I’m an authentic, sincere person. So, as long as things are natural and organic, I’m in my element. But the more staged something becomes, or the more required something becomes, it boxes me up,” the father said at the time.

“I just struggled with that environment. Especially at the end of it,” he added. “The last two years, not that we don’t look back on them fondly, but they were more of a job. So, something about breaking out of that has been liberating.”

Chip and Joanna announced exclusively with PEOPLE in August 2020 how Fixer Upper would be coming back to TV, rebooted as Fixer Upper: Welcome Home.

Chip Gaines Admits How Fixer Upper Fame Changed Personality
Image via Shutterstock

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“The day we wrapped our final episode of ​Fixer Upper,​ we really believed it was a chapter closed,” the couple said of the series’ comeback at the time. “We knew we needed a break and a moment to catch our breath. But we also knew we weren’t done dreaming about ways to make old things new again.” 

After the show ended, the couple took on various renovation projects but admitted how they missed the structure of the show that led them to fame.

“These past few years, we’ve continued tackling renovations and projects, doing the work we’re passionate about, but​ I don’t think either of us anticipated how the show would become such a permanent fixture in our hearts,” they said. “We’ve missed sharing the stories of these families and their homes with you, and we’re excited to do that again very soon!” 

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