Ben Affleck: ‘Parenthood Has Been a Positive Force in My Life’
Fatherhood has changed Ben Affleck’s world view. The Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice star is dad to three children with his estranged wife Jennifer Garner, but prior to his marriage to the Dallas Buyers Club actress he was in a series of failed relationships with actresses Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Lopez. He also starred in flop movies Gigli and Daredevil and checked into an alcohol rehabilitation center in 2001.
Affleck explains fame attributed to some of the mistakes he made earlier in his life and career. “I’d always had a strong idea about my values and the direction I wanted to be headed in, then I ran into getting famous and it totally spun me around and I flailed around for a few years,” he told The Guardian. “When you’re a young man in your 20s, part of that is making mistakes and learning from them. I just made those in front of everybody, rather than privately. “There’s stuff I look back on and kind of cringe at but I always tried to treat other people well. My parents imbued that in me and the mistakes I made were mostly just of the embarrassing kind.” Affleck began to see a positive change in his life and career after he married Garner in 2005, and while the couple is currently separated, they enjoy a friendly co-parenting relationship. Affleck’s career has also taken off again following his box office bombs, and he has directed and starred in critically-acclaimed films The Town, and Argo, for which he won the Oscar for Best Picture in 2013. He also starred in David Fincher’s Gone Girl. He will next be seen as Batman in Justice League and is slated to direct a stand-alone film about the superhero. Affleck explains parenthood has been the positive driving force in his life since his daughter Violet was born in 2005. “I think becoming a father makes you see the world differently and it’s good,” he continued. And while he is grateful for all the opportunities that have been afforded to him, the 44-year-old is protective about his children’s privacy. “I’ve been lucky,” he said. “I’ve had my wildest dreams come true, but the price is the Faustian exchange you make where your identity is not your own. You become a public figure and it changes all the rules. “The press can become invasive and dishonest, and you have to put up with inconvenient stuff like that. I’m at peace with paying my own price, what I’m not at peace with is when it invades on my kids’ space and time. They didn’t make any bargains. I try to shelter them as best I can. That’s my only real gripe.”