Now officially on the other side of their split—the couple announced their decision to divorce in 2015, officially filed for divorce in 2017 and finalized it the following year—Garner and Affleck have forged ahead in their separate lives, forever tied by the kids they co-parent and their shared history as husband and wife. While years have come and gone since their marriage formally ended, the Alias alum has not forgotten what it was like to live through it all.
"Going through it in public is not what's hard, going through it is what's hard, A," she told The Hollywood Reporter of their split. "And B, my children's eyes are on me." The former couple is mom and dad to daughters Violet, 15, and Seraphina, 12, and son Samuel, 9.
Even before their public uncoupling, Garner and their children had endured ceaseless paparazzi attention. "We lived down a street that was chock-a-block full of actors, much more successful and famous and decorated than me, including Ben, and they'd all go by one by one, no problem, and then I'd go do a school run and it'd be 15 cars going with me," she recalled to THR. "I never had a day without them, and if I did, if I made it to a park by hiding in the bottom of the pool man's truck or something, then a nanny would see me there and call a number and they'd swarm."
While Garner has since taken action against that treatment, their kids continue to grow up, making it more difficult to shield them from the headlines. Instead, they face them head-on. "When they were smaller and there were things out there that were shocking, my request to them was always, 'Let Dad and I talk you through whatever it is,'" she revealed. "I'd tell them, 'If you see an image on the front of a magazine, I'll look at it with you and we'll process all the scary feelings that come up together.'"
Though public interest in the family remains, with time, some things have changed for the better. Back in 2016, Garner told Vanity Fair, "Sure, I lost the dream of dancing with my husband at my daughter's wedding." Five years later, that concern has dissolved.
"When our kids get married, we'll dance, I know that now," she told THR. "We'll boogaloo and have a great time. I don't worry about that anymore."