Although homosexual, Maugham entered into a relationship with Syrie Wellcome, the wife of Henry Wellcome, an American-born English pharmaceutical magnate. They had a daughter named Mary Elizabeth Maugham, (1915–1998). Henry Wellcome sued his wife for divorce, naming Maugham as co-respondent.
In May 1917, following the decree absolute, Syrie Wellcome and Maugham were married. Syrie Maugham became a noted interior decorator who in the 1920s popularized "the all-white room." Their daughter was familiarly called Liza and her surname was changed to Maugham.
The marriage was unhappy, and Syrie divorced him in 1929, finding his relationship and travels with Haxton too difficult to live with.