Two years after announcing their separation, Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner’s marriage has come to an end. On Thursday the couple — who married in 2005 — officially filed for divorce, according to TMZ.
The pair reportedly filed without attorneys, with both actors seeking joint custody of their three children Violet, Seraphina, and Samuel. Garner’s petition for divorce and Affleck’s response not only mirrored each other, according to TMZ, but were filed simultaneously, which suggests an amicable split.
Garner told Vanity Fair in March of last year that, despite their split, the parents still hold mutual respect for each other, referring to Affleck as the “most brilliant person in any room” and “the love of [her] life.” “I didn’t marry the big fat movie star; I married him,” she said at the time. “And I would go back and remake that decision. I ran down the beach to him, and I would again.”
Since then, the couple has reportedly been working on their relationship with a source telling E! News as recent as last month that “They have been working at their relationship for the past few years.” “They are co-parenting,” the source added. “The most important thing in all of this are their kids.”
One possible reason the pair waited to officially file for divorce is the frenzy around their high-profile relationship, as Garner explained to Vanity Fair in her 2016 cover story. “I turned on CNN one day,” she said, “and there we were. I just won’t do it anymore… Ben says, ‘Oh, you just don’t care,’ and I say, ‘No, it’s the opposite.’ It hurts me so much, and I care so much,” she says, choosing to not “give a shit” how the divorce looks to the outside world. “I cannot be driven by the optics of this. I cannot let anger or hurt be my engine. I need to move with the big picture always on my mind, and the kids first and foremost.”