Sherri Shepherd is keeping things in perspective.
TV writer Lamar Sally filed for legal separation May 2, requesting custody of their unborn baby, which they'll welcome via surrogate this year. Ten days later, Shepherd filed for divorce, citing "irreconcilable differences." The View co-host had not addressed her marital or custodial issues publicly until Tuesday.
"I know that you cannot grow without pain," Shepherd told E! News at the 13th Annual Samsung Hope for Children Gala in New York City. "Growth is hard and growth is a struggle, and it hurts and you've got to go through that in order to grow or you stay the same. And also, I feel as long as you can get up and look up, you have another chance and another chance to make things right. Again, going through all my craziness, I hope that my character and my integrity speaks for me, so I stand behind that."
For the foreseeable future, Shepherd isn't looking to date again. "I may not be the best person to ask at this time about a guy," she said with a laugh, "but check back with me in a year about that subject!"
Until then, Shepherd remains focused on her 9-year-old son, Jeffrey. Their time together will be extra precious, given that the comedienne's ex-hubby, Jeff Tarpley, recently filed paperwork requesting full custody of their son, who is special needs. In court documents obtained by E! News, Tarpley accused Shepherd of neglect. He claimed Jeffrey can't tie his own shoes, has poor hygiene and can hardly write.
Spousal squabbles aside, Shepherd still believes in love—and she hope Jeffrey will find it one day, too.
"I try to bring my son up to be a kind person," she told E! News. "My son loves making people laugh and I think that will get a girl any day, any time. If you can make a woman laugh, that's like gold, but I think being kind and being able to forgive [is most important]. You really have to be able to forgive and you have to be kind to one another," Shepherd said. "That's what Meryl Streep told me: 'Be kind.'"
—Reporting by Jennifer Cooper