Collins answered yes while saying she loved George. She noted that he loved Leachman too. Under heavy emotions, Collins dropped the phone without hanging up, and Leachman could hear her throw up in the background.

When George learned what his mistress had done, he was furious. Though he and Leachman did not have a confrontation about his affair, his main concern was his wife’s stability and that of the family.

In her autobiography, Leachman also revealed that she had flings of her own while married to the author. She secretly dated stars such as Gene Hackman and Andy Williams.

Surprisingly, the “Phyllis” star admitted that she suspected George was cheating on her and deemed the circumstances a “somewhat open marriage.”

Nonetheless, when Leachman finally finished up with work in the play “A Touch of the Poet,” she returned to LA in a reduced state. She had no idea what would become of her union with George and felt guilty that she was away from her children for so long.

“Physically, I was still anemic,” Leachman explained. When she arrived at the airport, she found George and the kids waiting for her, and what she saw was an unhappy and curious group:

“Adam was off by himself, fifteen feet away from the others. He was looking down, his eyes hooded. Bryan was standing beside George, and George held baby George in his arms.”

Cloris Leachman and George Englund during the 52nd Annual Academy Awards - Rehearsals at Music Center in Los Angeles, California. / Source: Getty Images

Leachman revealed George Jr. kept asking where his mother was while standing right in front of him. He did not recognize her. Before Leachman left for New York, she and her brood had moved from the little house on Beverly Glen, next to her mother-in-law, onto Comstock Avenue in West Los Angeles.

But the family of six only lived there for a year, and she and George separated. He then moved to an English cottage above the Sunset Strip.

When George filmed 1963’s “The Ugly American,” he wanted the kids to go along with him to Thailand, and Leachman had to tag along to take care of their boys while on the trip. He wanted their children to experience different countries and their cultures, and it was important to him:

“George and I had discussions about it, and ultimately, we faced the obvious. I was the best one to go. We made a pact that under no circumstances would we fight during this trip.”

Leachman shared they both understood the responsibilities he had as a producer for the movie and being a first-time director, realizing it could be a good opportunity for his career.

The family had the experience of a lifetime while on the work trip. They visited fascinating places all over Bangkok. Every morning, they explored the city when they left the hotel in a samlor, a three-wheeled pedicab peddled by a young Thai man.

Apart from taking care of the kids, Leachman also ensured her estranged spouse was well-taken care of. She brought him juice when he was shooting outdoors, and he thought she did a marvelous job at it:

“An outstanding wife and a wonderful companion throughout the whole adventure.”

Director George Englund and his wife Cloris Leachman arriving at the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences' Hall of Fame Committe's 20th Annual Induction Gala on January 20, 2011 in Beverly Hills, California. / Source: Getty Images

Seeing the couple had promised to be civil with each other; made all the difference. Not once did the pair have conflict while in a foreign land. On the other hand, George had broken up with Collins, who then moved on with actor Warren Beatty.

Leachman and George decided to fight for their marriage, and when they got back home, they purchased a house in Brentwood Park and moved in as a family.

During that period, they welcomed their fourth son, Morgan. Their only daughter, Dinah, arrived in January 1966. However, after 26 years of marriage with five kids, Leachman and George divorced in December 1978.