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Posted Tue, September 14, 2010 4:40pm EDT

EXCLUSIVE! Before Kate’s Solo Vacation With Her Bodyguard, She Went On 6 Other Trips With Him & Lied To Jon About It!

BFFs, Kate has been traveling all summer long with her bodyguard Steve Neild, but what’s most shocking of all, is that she allegedly doesn’t tell Jon where she’s taking the kids when they go with her!

Do you think it’s odd that mom-of-eight Kate Gosselin is now finishing up a four-day vacation in sunny Cabo San Lucas, Mexico with her hunky, ever-present bodyguard Steve Neild?

The silver-haired bodyguard and newly buff beach blonde have had to refute rumors of an affair and accusations by her ex-husband Jon Gosselin, of cheating, and yet they are spending more time than ever in extremely close proximity. The pair were spotted relaxing in Mexico with Kate in a cleavage- baring halter top and short shorts, just days after she accused ex-Jon of creating a lousy environment for their eight children during his visitation times with them.

Unprovoked, Kate went on Live with Regis & Kelly on Sept. 10, and said she waits by the phone for her children to call, so she can pick them up from their visits to their dad’s house. She also claimed that she’s always at home … unless traveling for work. Well, an inside source tells HollywoodLife.com that Kate left on her cosy trip, sans kids, with Steve, later that very same day, after throwing mud at Jon.

Their trip concludes a summer in which it appears that Steve and Kate took 7 trips together — some with the children and some without, including a trip to Bald Head Island, N.C., where they were spotted on the beach in bathing suits sitting alone with their legs touching, and taking strolls together at sunset.

But Kate tells PEOPLE that the rumors of her relationship with Steve are “absurd” and she’s “completely alone.”

All together, the pair took 7 trips between the end of May and early Sept., and were together during 10 out of the 16 weeks. Furthermore, Steve has clearly been taking on many of the responsibilities that used to be shouldered by Kate’s ex-husband Jon, including the landscaping in front of Kate’s house, carrying the kids, accompanying Kate to the grocery store, and escorting her down the red carpet at the Emmys.

Steve’s “duties” with Kate apparently leave him little time to see his own wife, Gina Neild, who lives three hours away from Kate in Potomac, Md.

Here’s the thing: Kate has claimed in the past that Steve’s wife Gina is one of her best friends, but Gina’s been MIA since being photographed at Kate’s Reading, Pa., home July 4. Kate also claims she needs a bodyguard because she’s pursued by several paparazzi at any given time. But HollywoodLife.com has been to Kate’s home in Reading, and we can tell you there’s only one main photographer that follows Kate around.

What’s even more shocking is that Kate allegedly lies to Jon about where she’s going. A source tells us there are times when Jon has no idea where Kate has taken the kids!

“When she went to Bald Head Island with Steve, she told Jon she was going to the Outer Banks,” our source tells us. “She doesn’t tell Jon where she’s going.”

We spoke to a child and family psychologist who reveals that this lying and sneaking around is incredibly harmful to the eight Gosselin children.

“In Kate’s mind, she feels she doesn’t need to tell [Jon] where they are because it’s her time with the kids, but I can bet she would expect him to tell her,” Dr. Jeff Gardere says. “It puts a real barrier between mom and dad, and the kids become uncomfortable. It makes for a divided family. This is bad; it causes division in the minds of the children.”

But Steve, who is never photographed wearing a wedding ring, has a family of his own, which he rarely gets to spend time with. In fact, body language experts have been telling us for over a month that there’s serious sexual tension between Kate and Steve! So we did some more digging, and we discovered just how much time Kate and Steve have really been spending together.

Here’s the timeline that shows Steve spending the entire summer with Kate!

  1. May 23: They were spotted in LA for Dancing with the Stars committments, for several days.
  2. June 8: Steve accompanied Kate to New York City for her television appearances
  3. June 14: Steve assisted landscapers at Kate’s home in Reading, Pa.
  4. July 7: Kate and Steve were spotted jogging together in NYC’s Central Park.
  5. July 23: Steve followed Kate to Alaska to film Kate’s new show Kate Plus 8.
  6. Aug. 3: Kate and Steve shared a limo to NYC for more appearances.
  7. Aug. 14: The two spent a week on Bald Head Island, N.C., with the kids to film Kate Plus 8.
  8. Aug. 20: They took a trip to Quakertown, Pa.
  9. Aug. 30: Steve was by Kate’s side for her big Emmys opening performance in Los Angeles.
  10. Sept. 12: The two were spotted alone together in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, without the kids.

What do you think, BFFs? Are Kate and the bodyguard just good friends or something more?

— Bonnie Fuller & Chloe Melas

Click For Pics of Kate’s Evolving Hairstyles!