Jennifer Garner Says That Married Life and Raising Kids With Ben Affleck Was a ‘Total Circus’

CBS Sunday Morning

For those of us who aren’t celebrities, it is probably impossible to completely understand what it’s really like to be famous. From the outside, it seems like a dream life with the money, the career success and the ability to mingle with other celebrities.

Being a celebrity is not always a dream, and nobody knows that better than Jennifer Garner. The actress became a household name after the success of the show “Alias,” but she never really understood how hard it could be to be famous until she started dating Ben Afflack.

Affleck was probably used to the attention from the paparazzi by the time he went on his first date with Garner. His previous relationships with Gwyneth Paltrow and Jennifer Lopez were very much in the public eye, but the media simply couldn’t get enough of Bennifer 2.0, the nickname for Affleck and Garner.

Things did the opposite of calm down when Affleck and Garner got married. Then they had children and that became, in Garner’s words, “a circus.”

During an interview with PBS’ Kelly Corrigan, Garner described how hard it was to do something as simple as attend their daughter’s soccer game. “Anywhere that we went, it was a total circus. My one daughter tried to play soccer, and it was such a zoo for the families that they just said, ‘can you please not.'” 

Even when Garner needed to take a sick child to the doctor’s office, the paparazzi was following her. She explained, “For 10 years there were at the very least six cars, and often 20, outside of our house, and outside of school and at the pediatrician’s, and you’re begging them, ‘Please step aside from the pediatrician’s door. I have a sick kid, please.”

Garner felt helpless, overwhelmed and protective of her children. She desperately wanted something to change but didn’t know what to do until she commiserated with actress Halle Berry. The actresses worked together to push for legislation to protect the children of celebrities from the paparazzi, but Garner gives most of the credit for the law passing to Berry.

When the new law passed, that certainly helped their children, but it didn’t help protect Garner and Affleck’s marriage. Watch the video below to hear Garner explain what it is like to be in the public eye and how the paparazzi may have been partially to blame for her marriage to Affleck ending.