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Jerry Seinfeld appears on the NBC show The Marriage Ref in an episode that aired on June 26, 2011. - Provided courtesy of NBC

Jerry Seinfeld's 'Marriage Ref' spurred couple's split?

02/26/2011 by Corinne Heller

A New York man named Howie Kohlenberg says Jerry Seinfeld and his NBC show "The Marriage Ref" helped spur his wife to leave him and their child.

Kohlenberg, a 47-year-old cosmetics salesman, told the New York Post that his wife Christine, 37, became obsessed with fame after they appeared on the series in 2010 and left him and their 4-year-old son to "chase a dream of starring in a "Real Housewives"-style reality show." She has not responded publicly and Seinfeld's spokesperson declined comment.

On the show, which Seinfeld appears on and produces, couples talk about their marital problems before a panel of celebrities. Kohlenberg posted a scan of the newspaper article, which contained the headline "Jerry Seinfeld ruined my life," on his Facebook page on Sunday, June 26, the day "The Marriage Ref" returned for a second season.

A day earlier, he wrote on his Wall: "Hi FB Friends,if your interested,Read the Article about me tomorrow in the Sunday NY POST RE:The Marraige Ref Reality Show." He lists his relationship status as "Single" and "The Marriage Ref" among his favorite television shows.

"The headline should read, 'Jerry Seinfeld ruined my life: the danger of reality shows,''" Kohlenberg told the New York Post. "Jerry, Mr. Billionaire, I blame. And his show. The people on the show were pumping us up, saying, 'You're going to wake up and be stars. You're going to be famous and make money.' The producer kept saying her lips looked great, and all of a sudden she was getting a lot of Botox."

He said the two appeared on the show to promote their business and that after their episode aired, his wife flew to Los Angeles to star in a comedy movie called "Chakra Love" and then left him for one of the film's producer. The independent film was released in March.

"Now she's getting this huge head," Kohlenberg said. "She wants to do Playboy. We almost got kicked off the show because she was putting racy photos on Facebook. I'm not saying our marriage was perfect, but it put it in a whole new direction. It was the nail in the coffin. She had all these ideas that 'I have to live my life and be an actress.'"

The New York Daily News said that when asked about the matter at the All-Star Comedy Roundtable at the Nantucket Film Festival on Sunday, June 26, Seinfeld told the newspaper: I love it, I love, I love it! When people get upset I enjoy it. That he's having problems, and blaming me, it's all ... Anything that alleviates the withering, blithering boredom of existence, I'm in favor of."

The second season premiere of "The Marriage Ref" featured British comedian Ricky Gervais and American actress Julianne Moore. The episode was watched by 4.6 million people aged 18 to 49, earning a 1.6 rating that marked a 67 percent decrease from its in-season debut last year, Entertainment Weekly said.

What the season 2 premiere of the NBC series "The Marriage Ref" below.

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