“A lot of the things that you learn in the process of dealing with addiction are good life lessons anyways,” he says. “Be honest, take responsibility for your mistakes and help other people.”
He shares this philosophy with his three kids along with ex-wife Jennifer Garner. His notes how Violet, 14, Seraphina, 11 and Sam, 8, are resilient.
“Kids are resilient,” he says. “They appreciate the truth. Kids, if you’re honest and open with them, can forgive failings and setbacks, and they want to love you and respect you. That’s my approach to fatherhood.”
“I’ve talked to my kids pretty honestly about tough times,” he went on. “I try to be honest with them and say the most important thing is to be open and honest about how you’re feeling and when you’re not feeling good, to say this is difficult for me and to reach out to their parent and teachers.”
He also shares how he does his best to be present with them.
“It’s trial and error,” Affleck says. “You have to be able to forgive yourself as parents and say I’m not always going to do this perfectly. I’m going to do my best. I’m going to try my hardest. Sometimes I’m going to say and do the wrong thing but, like I said, kids are okay with that. If you’re honest and love them.”
And when it comes to his sobriety, he attempts to teach them by taking it day by day.
“It’s important not to obsess and get into a bunch of negative thinking around relapses and setbacks because that isn’t helpful. What’s helpful is to stay positive and focus on the fact that I’m just the guy who’s doing good today.”
With a background in the creative and educational fields, Amelia Finefrock is freelance writer, singer-songwriter and nanny based in Chicago.
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