Actress Jennifer Garner says despite what everyone else may think, her ex-nanny had nothing to do with her divorce from husband, actor Ben Affleck.
In a no-holds-barred interview with Vanity Fair magazine, the 43-year-old actress has opened up about her relationship with Affleck and his alleged affair with their children’s nanny, 28-year-old Christine Ouzounian.
“Let me just tell you something. We had been separated for months before I ever heard about the nanny. She had nothing to do with our decision to divorce. She was not a part of the equation,” Garner said.
Garner admitted that “nannygate” wasn’t easy, especially for their three children, Violet, 10, Seraphina, 7, and Sam, 4.
“Bad judgment? Yes. It is not great for your kids for (a nanny) to disappear from their lives. I have had to have conversations about the meaning of ‘scandal’ (with my children).”
In June 2015, Affleck and Garner announced their plans to divorce, which immediately sparked a media frenzy around the beloved couple.
“I turned on CNN one day and there we were. I just won’t do it anymore. I took a silent oath to myself last summer to really stay offline. I am totally clueless about all of it.”
The actress insisted that despite what has been reported, she was in a “real marriage” with Affleck, also 43.
“It was a real marriage. It wasn’t for the cameras. And it was a huge priority for me to stay in it. And that did not work. I didn’t marry a movie star; I married him. And I would go back and remake that decision. I ran down the beach to him, and I would again.
For Garner, Affleck is still the “love of her life”.
“You can’t have these three babies and so much of what we had. He’s the love of my life. He’s the most brilliant person in any room, the most charismatic, the most generous.”
That being said, the mother-of-three doesn’t deny that her estranged husband is a “complicated guy.”
“When his sun shines on you, you feel it. But when the sun is shining elsewhere, it’s cold. He can cast quite a shadow,” she said.
While Garner speaks highly of Affleck, 43, she doesn’t offer any hope that her marriage can be salvaged, though she understands why outsiders remain hopeful.
“When Jen Aniston and Brad Pitt broke up, I was dying to see something that said they were getting back together,” she said.
Garner said she has now accepted a future without Affleck as her husband.
“The main thing is these kids. Sure, I lost a dream of dancing with my husband at my daughter’s wedding. But you should see their faces when he walks through the door. And if you see your kids love someone so purely and wholly, then you’re going to be friends with that person.”
Garner didn’t shy away from giving her opinion about Affleck’s post-split tattoo of a rising phoenix that covers his entire back.
“A phoenix rising from the ashes. Am I the ashes in this scenario? I take umbrage. I refuse to be the ashes.”