In a new interview, actor Ben Affleck is opening up about his alcohol addiction and also who and what is to blame for his habit. Now, reportedly sober, while talking with SiriusXM’s The Howard Stern Show, Affleck revealed that he believes he still would be drinking if he was still married to actress Jennifer Garner.
Affleck and Garner were married for 13 years before they split in 2018. The former couple share three children together, 16-year-old Violet, 12-year-old Seraphina, and 9-year-old Samuel.
Shortly after their divorce, Affleck sought help through a rehabilitation center for his alcohol addiction. However, he believes that if he and Garner would have continued to work on their marriage rather than get a divorce, he would have never gotten help.
Ben Affleck told Howard Stern that “part of why I started drinking was because I was trapped.” At some point during the 10 years he was married to Garner, Affleck said he became unhappy.
“I was like, ‘I can’t leave because of my kids, but I’m not happy, what do I do?’ And what I did was, drank a bottle of scotch and fell asleep on the couch, which turned out not to be the solution.”
Affleck continued to tell Stern that he and Garner worked hard on their marriage, but in the end, decided that it was even best for their children if they went their separate ways. “Ultimately, we tried, we tried, we tried because we had kids, but both of us felt like we didn’t want this to be the model that our kids see of marriage.”
And while it may seem like Affleck is putting the blame on his ex-wife, the actor revealed that the divorce was an amicable decision. “Everything you read [in the tabloids about the divorce] was bullsh*t. The truth was we took our time, we made our decision,” Ben Affleck added. “We grew apart. We had a marriage that didn’t work. This happens. She’s somebody I love and respect, but to whom I shouldn’t be married any longer.”
In the end, Affleck said he and Garner worked hard to create a great life for their kids even though they are no longer together and part of that was maintaining a healthy relationship even if they are no longer together. “We did it amicably. We did our best.”
“Did we have moments of tension? Did we have disagreements over custody? Was stuff difficult for us? Did we get angry? Yes, but fundamentally it was always underpinned with a respect,” he continued. “I knew she was a good mom. I always hoped she knew I was a good dad. I knew I was.”
Although hitting rock bottom may seem like a difficult thing to endure, and Affleck even admitted it was the “worst day of his life,” but added that it is what he needed to ensure that he keeps his relationship with his kids.
“I’m lucky because I hit that point before I lost the things that were most important. Not my career or money — it was my relationship with my kids, and when I felt as if it impacted them, I recognized it. … I made amends. But since that day, I swear to Christ, I have not ever wanted to drink once.”
Ben Affleck Clarifies Original Statements Made on Howard Stern
Following his interview with Howard Stern, Affleck made an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel LIVE! It was there that he clarified the comment he made about feeling trapped in his marriage with Jennifer Garner and blaming his marriage for his alcohol addiction.
“I would never want my kids to think I would ever say a bad word about their mom,” he told Kimmel. “I had gone on and said how much we respect each other and cared about each other and cared about our kids and put them first.”
However, that wasn’t the portion of the interview that grabbed people’s attention and it “just made me out to be the worst, most insensitive, stupid awful guy.” And although he is used to the tabloid fodder, Ben Affleck says he draws the line at his family.
It was then when he was very clear with Kimmel, saying he doesn’t blame Garner for his habits. “That’s not true. I don’t believe that. It’s the exact opposite of who I am, what I believe.”
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