When Vanessa Hudgens and Austin Butler called it quits after 9 years of dating, the former High School Musical star hoped it was just “temporary,” RadarOnline.com can exclusively reveal.

A source explained that Hudgens still cares for Butler deeply and thought the best way to save their relationship was by letting him go.

“She was under the impression that this was temporary,” the insider told Radar. “She thought they would just be on a break and then he’d miss her and come back. But the more time passes, I think Vanessa is worried that he won’t.”

“I don’t think his focus is to be in a committed relationship at the moment,” the source added.

Vanessa Hudgens Thought Breakup From Austin Butler Was 'Temporary'_1


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As Radar previously reported, Butler’s career caused the rift between them.

“Austin’s career has really skyrocketed in the last year,” the source explained. “He appeared in Once Upon A Time In Hollywood and he’s starring as Elvis [Presley], so for him he is just focusing on that and it really impacted his relationship with Vanessa.”

The two split in November 2019.

The stars — who began dating in September 2011 — sparked breakup rumors after seemingly failing to spend the holidays together.

Vanessa Hudgens Thought Breakup From Austin Butler Was 'Temporary'_2


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Since their split, Hudgens has been posting a series of risqué photos on social media. The former couple appear to still be following each other on Instagram.

Hudgens was recently spotted on a night out with Lakers basketball player, Kyle Kuzma. But a separate source told Radar, he was just a “distraction,” while she copes with her breakup.

In a 2018 interview with Women’s Health, Hudgens seemingly hinted that marriage wasn’t in the cards for them any time soon.

“I want to get married, travel, then have kids — probably in my late 30s,” she admitted.”We both respect, trust, and admire each other,” she shares about what makes their relationship work. “It’s so solid now because I feel strong as an independent woman. I am very self-reliant, but it’s nice to have a best friend you can share victories with as well as losses.”