Actress Ruffa Gutierrez has opened up about meeting her former husband Turkish businessman Yilmaz Bektas to discuss co-parenting duties for their teen daughters Lorin Gabriella and Venice.
During a Zoom press conference with the entertainment press on Feb. 15, Ruffa revealed the reasons why she wanted to reconnect with her ex-husband.
“Si Ylmaz naman, siya ang lalaki na iniiyakaan ko pa rin kasi may anak kami and yung sa amin ni Ylmaz malalim. May dalawa kaming anak, 7-9 years na magkasama kami, ang daming ganap in those years. Siya ‘yung klaseng pain na gusto mong kalimutan kasi iniwan ko sya na mahal na mahal ko pa sya pero mas mahal ko ang sarili ko. So naguusap kami ulit and na-realize namin na time is so precious and we’re getting old na,” Ruffa said.
Ruffa said that Ylmaz wanted to spend time with his kids so he’s planning to visit Manila sometime in June. But if the pandemic won’t allow it, Yilmaz told Ruffa and her children to visit him in Turkey.
“Let’s try to be co-parents first. Ako raw ang pinaka-greatest love niya. I told you, mahirap akong kalimutan. Masarap kasi akong magmahal. Gusto niya to try to make things right for the kids,” she said after her phone conversation with him.
Ruffa said that Yilmaz has been telling her that he would visit them in the Philippines for several years now but he hasn’t kept his promise.
“Tuparin muna niya yung sinsabi niya na pupunta siya rito. He’s supposed to come in June,” she added.
Ruffa has also called Yilmaz her greatest love although it does not mean that he is her forever.
“There are different kinds of love – puppy love, first love. Si Ylmaz ang greatest love ko pero hindi ibig sabihin siya ang forever ko. Mas excited ako sa forever love ko na makakasama ko sa buhay. I’m excited for that chapter sino ang makakasama ko. Ang peg ko kasi parents ko. They’ve been together for 50 years through ups and downs. If it’s meant to be, it will happen.”
Ruffa can’t help but became emotional when she talked about Yilmaz.
“Pag nag-uusap kami, minsan mahaba at reminiscing the good times. Nag-aaway kami, nagsusumbatan. Everytime I talk to him, I end up crying. Yung pain sa aking heart andun pa rin.”
“Hanggang ngayon may fear pa rin ako. Mahirap. Alam n’yo naman ang story ko. Ayoko ng buksan muli. Hindi naman natin kagustuhan ito. Tuwing kausap ko siya bumabalik yung dati. Nag reconnect kami noong nasa lock-in taping ako for ‘Stay In Love.’ I think Yilmaz is ready to see us again. Let’s see what’s gonna happen,” she said.
Asked about the relationship of her daughters to their father, Ruffa said: “They welcome the fact that he would visit us. We’ve survived on our own. I was a mom and dad for both of them. Hindi naman ako pinanganak na bilyonaryo for them to have the best education. Gusto ko ipakita kay Yilmaz na kaya kong palakihin ang mga anak ko.”
Ruffa and Yilmaz got married in 2003. They split in 2007. Their marriage has been annulled. The actress said that she welcomes the idea of getting married once again but she’s not excited anymore.
“For the longest time, ayokong magpakasal kapag may nababalitaan ako na nangangaliwa or nag-aaway na mag-asawa. Pero minsan, naiisip ko rin for my kids. Pero now hindi ako atat na atat magpakasal,” she said.
For the record, there’s nothing romantic going-on between Ruffa and Herbert.
“Bakit ba kami natsi-tsismis? Nakakaloka! Siguro nagustuhan nila yung love team namin sa ‘The House Arrest of Us,’ Ang daming naku-cute-an sa amin. Kaya yung mga may crush na maliliit sa akin, nagkaroon ng pag-asa. Usually ang type ko talaga is tall, dark and handsome.”
Ruffa recalls that he has known the former mayor of Quezon City since she was 14 when she became a leading lady in one of his movies. Now they reconnected again as friends.
“Nasa 40s na ako and 50s na siya. Ang tawag ko sa kanya is mayor. Minsan Professor Bautista because ang dami ko talagang natututunan sa kanya. I enjoy his company. He’s a versatile actor.”
Ruffa insists that her relationship with Herbert is simply platonic. “Grabe kayo! Walang romantic! Platonic lang. Over naman! Natatawa naman ako sa inyo. Maraming priorities si mayor sa buhay. Wala kaming lovey-dovey, My gosh!”
The former beauty queen admits that Herbert inspires her. “Of course, ini-inspire ako ni mayor. Matalino siyang tao. Intelehente. Si mayor really cares about my family. Inspiring siya because may sense siyang kausap and he gives the best advice. He’s my mentor sa buhay. Close kami pero wala kaming ’til death to us part.”
Ruffa is hoping that her project with Herbert will push through.
Following her breakup with French-Israeli businessman Jordan Mouyal, her boyfriend of seven years, Ruffa said she chooses to remain single for now.
“It’s my choice to be single. Ang love andyan lang yan. Never naman ako nagkaroon ng fear that I will grow old alone. To jump into a serious relationship now, that’s not part of my plan. Love comes with any age.”
Ruffa was busy transferring to her new home in one of the posh villages in Metro Manila when she met the press via Zoom. She’s excited about her new projects, including endorsements. “I am excited for my new teleserye. Hindi ko muna puwedeng sabihin ang ibang details basta please pray for me para marami tayong chikahan.”