"I think we were shocked," Seal told Ellen DeGeneres on Monday's show. "You go into these things with the greatest intentions when you say 'I do' and you say ''til death do us part.' Those vows hold value ... These things happen."
The pair, who married in 2005, announced their split Monday, stating: "We have had the deepest respect for one another throughout our relationship and continue to love each other very much, but we have grown apart."
Seal also explained to the talk show host why he was still wearing his wedding ring. "I think it's just pretty much a token of how I feel about this woman," he said. "Just because we have decided to separate doesn't necessarily mean you take off your ring and you're no longer connected to that person ... Will we wear the ring for the rest of our lives? Who knows? But right now it feels really comfortable on my hand so I have intentions of taking it off anytime soon."
Seal, whose new album dropped Tuesday, also appeared on Tavis Smiley, which airs Friday on PBS. "What one has to do in this situation is remain civil and to retain one's dignity and to be professional and to understand that we are not the only people on this planet that go through this," he said. "It is just unfortunately a chapter of life."
Watch a clip of Seal's interview with Smiley: