Life After Ben Affleck: 20 Ways Jennifer Garner Had To Change The Way She Parents

It’s without a doubt that if there is one role that Jennifer Garner loves the most, it’s her role as a mother. She’s done a fantastic job of branding herself as a mom who likes to run her errands with less than perfect hair, perhaps a spot on her top, and several kids behind her. In other words, she’s got great mom hustle and quite frankly, she doesn’t care if the photographers are catching each and every move she makes. All she cares is that her children are taken care of, safe, happy and above all, loved by her and her ex-spouse, Ben Affleck.

With all of that being said though, there are several different ways that Jennifer Garner has had to change her approach to how she raises her family and, of course, parents her children. Now that she is doing parenthood on her own, she’s forced to make some pretty important executive decisions by herself. Sure, Ben Affleck is still there and is still willing to help along the way, but it’s not the same when the kids are living in two different households. Here are 20 different ways Jennifer was forced to change her life ever since she and Ben Affleck split up.

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20 Living The Solo Life

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When it comes to her personal life, Jennifer doesn’t like to reveal too much, and especially not to the media. As a celebrity, she knows that there are certain elements that she needs to reveal about her life. After all, she’s always in the spotlight. But when it comes to who she is dating and having a ‘special someone,’ in her life, Jennifer stays quiet. For now, she is simply living the solo life. But if she does end up finding someone who will end up with her heart again, don’t expect to see him out and about with her. Instead, Jennifer will make sure that he is well hidden behind closed doors, or at least as far away as possible from the prying photographers.

19 Protecting Her Children’s Hearts And Privacy

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For years Jennifer Garner has worked very hard to ensure that her children grow up having a normal life, despite the fact that their two parents are huge Hollywood A-listers. It hasn’t always been easy, but Jen makes sure that the paparazzi and the photographers keep their distance from her three children. As a mother, she not only wants to protect her children’s privacy but their hearts, too. That’s why she wants to make sure that they also grow up with both their mother and their father by their side at all times. She knows that her family only feels complete when Ben is around.

18 Her ‘Grin And Bear It’ Approach With Ben Affleck

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Even though Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck pulled the plug on their marriage back in 2015, it took them several years to finalize their separation. During that time, Jennifer transitioned from being Ben’s wife to a new solo mom who had to take care of everything on her own. And to put it simply, it wasn’t always easy. As a matter of fact, there is a photo of Jennifer trying her best to take care of her former spouse while handing him takeout food in a brown bag in the back of a car. Clearly, Jen wants to do what’s best for her kids and that’s why she is tolerating what he can with Ben, despite his personal issues.

17 Doing Things Together, But Separately

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With the above being said, Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck are still doing things together, even though they are living separate lives. As a matter of fact, the former married couple was spotted taking their children to church together on a Sunday afternoon in Santa Monica. They also often drop off or pick up their kids from school or take them to their extra-curricular activities. Clearly, Jen won’t let Ben just fade away. She’s making sure that he stays involved in everything that their family does, regardless of what else he might have going on in his life. For Jen, it’s important that her children see their mom and dad cooperating at all times.

16 Having Her Kids Abide By The Same Rules And Regulations

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Now that Ben Affleck no longer lives in her guest house, her children are being shuffled from one home to the next. And as a result, she needs to make sure that they abide by the same rules and regulations, although it’s not always easy. “My daughter is demanding a phone and she’s 11. Jen is not as supportive as I am of the phone. I feel like she should have it to be able to call or whatever,” says Ben. “She goes to her friend’s house and they have less computer supervision over there so she reads stuff. There’s only so much you can do to staunch the flow of information. It’s better to help them contextualize it.”

15 Making The Kids A Priority

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Sure, a lot of things can be said about Jennifer Garner, but if there is one thing that’s for certain, it’s that she’s a mom that always puts her kids first. She wants them to grow up happy and healthy, just like she did as a child in West Virginia. Jen told Southern Living, "It's really important for my kids to see that everyone doesn't have the lives they see in Los Angeles. That doesn't reflect the rest of the world. I want them to grow up with the Southern values I had—to look at people when they say hello and to stop and smell the roses. If I could do half as good a job as my mom did, I'd be pretty happy."

14 Chasing Her Own Heart And Dreams

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One of the hardest parts about being a solo mom is not having enough time in the day to not only take care of your kids, but yourself, too. Unfortunately, all of your personal needs go to the wayside. You kind of forget about your own dreams and what your heart wants. Luckily, Jen has managed to change that. She’s now paying attention to some of the things that have been lacking in her life. “I definitely put a lot of time towards my marriage that I will now have for myself,” she says. “I don’t know how I will use that.”

13 A Happy Mom Equals A Happy Family

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As many people would agree, a happy mom equals a happy family. But for Jennifer Garner, she’s too often busy to work on her happiness. The actress told Us Weekly, "There's an internal battle. I need to work, I need to work, I need to work, and I need to be home with my kids and the kids win. It's about getting the kids up and fed, getting one to school, getting the other down for a nap, going to the grocery store, picking one up from school, getting the other one down for another nap, cooking dinner . . . I live my life at these two extremes. I'm either a full-time stay-at-home mom or a full-time actress."

12 Realizing That Things Will Never Be The Same

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If there is one thing that Jen knows, it’s that things will never be the same between her and Ben Affleck. Sure, they are good friends and so far they are doing a good job of co-parenting, but that family nucleus is gone. That’s why she works extra hard to make sure that her kids are not negatively affected by their separation. Jen told Well and Good, “My kids are used to the strange rhythm of production —I’m either very much home and available, or I’m working a bunch and leaving notes everywhere for them to find during the day. I have great help at my house and it all works out.”

11 Letting Ben Have His Time With The Kids

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When two people separate, it can often get very difficult to “share” the kids, so to speak. A lot of moms would agree that the moment they see their children spend the weekend with their father, their heart breaks a little bit inside. You can’t help but miss them. But for Jen, she knows that she has to let Ben have his individual time with the kids. After all, he is a parent and a father that needs to work on his relationship with his kids, too. It might not always be easy to let go of your children, but at least Jen knows that they are in good, loving hands with their dad.

10 How She Is Reshuffling Things At Home

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Whenever Jennifer Garner has a little time on her hands, she manages to put her extra energy into something useful. As a matter of fact, Jennifer recently posted on social media that she is purging and tidying up her home after she was inspired to do so by Netflix star and master home organizer, Marie Kondo. Even Jennifer knows that the best way to get rid of some ‘negative energy’ is to reshuffle a few things at home and of course, start the new year off right by keeping things both tidy and neat. And so far it seems to be working well for her.

9 Learning Forgiveness And Moving On

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One of the hardest parts about separating is learning how to forgive and move on. And for Jennifer Garner, it’s something she’s still working on. Jen told Vanity Fair, “It’s not Ben’s job to make me happy. The main thing is these kids—and we’re completely in line with what we hope for them. Sure, I lost the 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.”

8 Answering All Of The Tough Questions

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Now that her children are a little bit older and on the cusp of their teenage years, they certainly have more questions about their mother and their father and why their marriage didn’t work. For Jen, it’s not always easy to answer all of their tough questions, but she definitely tries her best. As a matter of fact, the Hollywood actress recently admitted that she had to explain to her children why their beloved nanny was no longer working with their family. We can only imagine how hard that was for her.

7 Taking Care Of Both Her Mental And Physical Health

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As a mother, your number one concern is to make sure that your children are always happy, healthy, and above all, loved. But what about yourself? Jen Garner now knows more than ever before that she needs to take care of both her mental and her physical health. She also realizes that happy endings only happen in Hollywood movies and unfortunately, not in everyday life. Jennifer recently said, “I don't have this fantasy about marriage anymore. Everyone says it takes hard work. Well, it kind of does - and I'm much more pragmatic about romance than I used to be.”

6 Realizing There’s Very Little ‘Me’ Time

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Jennifer Garner is a mother-of-three who is always on the run. There isn’t a day that doesn’t go by that we don’t see the Hollywood actress shuffling from one place to another while taking her kids to all sorts of places near their home in Santa Monica, Calif. It didn’t take Jennifer very long to realize that there is very little ‘me’ time in her life and that is something that she has learned to accept. After all, she’s like so many regular moms out there who don’t have the time in their schedules to go to the spa for a pedicure, wax their eyebrows or even blow dry their hair in the morning.

5 Dealing With Public Opinion

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While this isn’t something that the everyday mom deals with, it’s a tough matter for Jennifer Garner. One of the hardest things about her marriage and separation was the fact that it was all played out in front of the paparazzi cameras and of course, the media. Privacy is just something that Jen will never have in her life. A lot of the opinions that she heard about her marriage definitely hurt in more ways than one. “It was a real marriage,” Garner told Vanity Fair in an interview. “It wasn’t for the cameras. And it was a huge priority for me to stay in it. And that did not work.”

4 Realizing That She And Ben Will Always Be A Team

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“I didn’t marry the big [...] movie star; I married him,” she says. “And I would go back and remake that decision. I ran down the beach to him, and I would again. You can’t have these three babies and so much of what we had. He’s the love of my life. What am I going to do about that? He’s the most brilliant person in any room, the most charismatic, the most generous. He’s just a complicated guy. I always say, ‘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.”

3 Being The Mom And Dad At Home

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While Jennifer Garner can count on Ben Affleck to always be there for her, she can’t count for him to be available during every second of the day. That’s why she’s learned how to be the mom and the dad at home to their three children. If there is someone who needs to create French braids for her daughter’s hair, Jen will do it. If her son needs help with his math homework or creating a new Science project, Jen will do it, too. In other words, she’s the mom, she’s the dad, and she’s the ultimate parent. It’s no wonder that she often looks exhausted and ready for a break.

2 Learning How To Compromise

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Jen has done her best to cooperate with Ben, even during difficult times. At the end of the day, they have a common goal an that’s to do what’s best for their kids. “You have to be on the same page. You have to cooperate," Ben told The Today Show. "If you recognize that you both have the best interest of the kids at heart, it’s quite a special connection. We’re the only two people in the world who care this much about these three kids. We don’t always agree. I tend to be more permissive about video games, for example. I played video games when I was a kid.”

1 Reuniting For Family Events

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One of the best things that Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck can do is to show their kids that they can be in the same room at the same time, while also celebrating important family functions with one another. There aren’t a lot of celebrity parents that are willing to do that for their kids as it takes a lot of maturity on both sides to make it happen. Luckily, Jen and Ben are smart enough to know that it takes two to successfully co-parent children together. And so far they are doing a stellar job of making it work.

source: people magazine, hello magazine, page six, etonline, E! online

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