It looks like Jennifer Garner got dealt with a stroke of rotten luck when it comes to marriage.
Before she settled down with her now ex-husband, Ben Affleck, in 2005, the Alias star was married to actor and director Scott Foley for four years. Unfortunately enough, the pair decided to go their separate ways due to “irreconcilable differences,” which was also more or less the same reasoning Garner proffered after divorcing the Dawn of Justice star.
But while Garner’s divorce from Affleck had been heartbreaking for her, at least it didn’t obliterate her to the point of seeking therapy. That’s certainly more than she could say about her relationship with Foley.
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Jennifer Garner on Breaking Up With Scott Foley
Jennifer Garner and Scott Foley’s love story dates back to 1998 when the ex-couple served as co-stars in J.J. Abram’s television series named Felicity. The two hit it off almost instantly on the show’s set, soon after which they started dating. Two years into their relationship, Garner and Foley tied the knot in 2000, only for them to break up within three years of marriage, with their divorce finalized in 2004.
According to their divorce papers, the duo had to part ways due to irreconcilable differences. But at some point, both of them believed that they’d never truly been ready for that serious of a commitment, to begin with. In an old interview with Parade, The Adam Project actress revealed how she felt partly responsible for her split with her first ex-husband. Garner, 50, felt that her lack of communication and inability to express her unfiltered emotions acted as a thorn between her and the Scandal star.
“I had a lot of growing up to do. I’m still conflict-averse. I don’t like to argue. But back then I couldn’t have a fight. I couldn’t work things out because I wasn’t able to say what I needed to say. I didn’t have a voice. I didn’t dare to express myself. It was a huge heartbreak for me to have something fail like that.”
But as painful as it was for her to pick herself up after the split, Garner made the conscious choice of channeling her anguish into more productive things instead, with the goal of becoming a better version of herself.
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Jennifer Garner Needed Therapy After Her First Divorce
Garner’s divorce from Foley indeed rendered her devastated, but pain is also often the greatest motivator. This is why, the 13 Going 30 star decided to work on herself instead of pointing fingers at The Unit star. Somewhere along the way, she realized that taking responsibility for her actions and behavior was way more valuable than attributing blame to her ex-partner. And that sense of culpability was what encouraged her to seek professional help.
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“I knew that this was either an opportunity for growth or I would sink. It’s easy when you’re hurt and angry to just say, ‘Oh, it’s them.’ But I had to come into my own. I thought, ‘Why did this relationship not work? What part of the failure is my responsibility?’ So I went to work on it. I started therapy.”
So, if you want to become a better person, a gut-wrenching heartbreak will probably do the trick.