Appearing on an episode of The Howard Stern Show, the 49-year-old actor opened up about his 13-year marriage to Garner, what led them to announce their plans to divorce in 2015, and how his alcoholism played a part in this.
“We had a marriage that didn’t work. This happens. It was somebody I love and respect but to whom I shouldn’t be married any longer,” Affleck told Stern in the interview that aired on December 14.
Ben Affleck talks to Howard Stern about how being "trapped” in marriage to Jennifer Garner led him to drinking:
“I was like, ‘I can’t leave because of my kids, but I’m not happy, what do I do?’ And what I did was [I] drank a bottle of scotch and fell asleep on the couch, which turned out not to be the solution.”
The two-time Oscar winner then noted how both he and Garner didn’t want their three kids, daughters Violet, 16, Seraphina, 12, and nine-year-old son Samuel, to see them in an unhappy marriage.
“But both of us felt like we don’t want this to be the model that our kids see of marriage,” and guessed what would’ve happened if the pair had stayed married and added: “We’d probably be at each other’s throats.”
However, the comment that is prompting backlash is when Affleck blames his alcoholism on his “trapped” marriage - and added he most likely would still be drinking if he remained married to Garner.
“I’d probably still be drinking. Part of why I started drinking alcohol was because I felt trapped,” he admitted.
Affleck is now dating his ex-fiancee Jennifer Lopez who were previously together from 2002-2004.
His words sparked quite the reaction on Twitter, as many have slammed Affleck over his comments on his marriage to Garner.
Jennifer Garner’s friends telling her not to read Ben Affleck’s interview with Howard Stern… https://t.co/QNtWoLYtsv
While others defended Affleck’s comments and said that the Justice League actor was simply expressing how he felt and wasn’t actually criticising Garner, they also praised him for his candid honesty.
Some also highlighted the fact that Affleck also praised Garner in the very same interview where he said: “We did our best. I knew she [Garner] was a good mom, and I hoped she knew I was a good dad. I had to get sober, and I acknowledge that.”