Big Bang Theory star Mayim Bialik, 40, has been divorced for three years (which I didn’t realize until now but apparently it’s not a secret) and has two sons, aged 7 and 10, with her ex. Bialik has been outspoken about her somewhat conservative beliefs. She’s an Orthodox Jewish woman who has spoken out against sexist children’s programming, revealing advertising aimed at children, Hollywood’s obsession with appearance, and more. She’s opinionated, and her thoughts on coparenting with her ex come across that way too. Mayim recorded a video revealing how she gets along with her ex, and it’s like she’s lecturing us instead of explaining what works for her. You can see the video above, there are so many jump cuts it made my head spin, and in case you’re at work or otherwise can’t listen to it for some reason, here’s some of what she said.
This is something I’ve never spoken about publicly… However I’d like to talk about it in a way that might help some of you that are going through something similar, or might educate people as to what divorce could look like in some families. So what does it mean to create the healthiest possible environment for children in the context of a divorce?
Number one, we do things together. We celebrate holidays together like Passover, Hanukkah, Thanksgiving. We go to synagogue together for major holidays. Is it always perfect and exactly what I want? Of course not. Do my kids sometimes complain that they’d rather have Passover at their dad’s house instead of mine? Of course they do. But we all end up being together and that’s literally what’s more important.
Number two, we continue to be part of each other’s families. I still talk to my ex-husband’s mother and father and grandparents and aunts and uncles. I still send them pictures of my kids throughout the year. My ex and I have attended funerals for each other’s families…
Number three, we try to model good behavior. We don’t trash talk each other… marriage can be really awesome and it’s a lot of work. Being divorced is lame, it’s bad, it’s not a fan way to raise kids. Things my ex did when we were married that annoyed me then annoy me still. So why put the effort in? Well, life’s not a dress rehearsal. My kids get one chance to be kids and this is their situation. I have to put them first because I’m their mom and he’s their dad. Their dad has given over his life to care for them completely and so courageously.
I’m the working mom and when I’m the one working, he’s the one [caring for them] I miss them a lot and I miss that life a lot. So the best thing I can do is be tremendously grateful what a wonderful ex husband I have and what a great dad he is and to continue to shatter the image of the perfect family that I thought my intact family would be.
We get to make the most of what we have and in some cases we get to make the most of what we have left. That’s what families do…
I guess that’s how life is a lot of the time, it’s not what you picture. The less time you spend wondering what might have been and the more time you spend being present with what is, the bigger potential for that happiness to grow.
She came across as somewhat preachy and know-it-all, but I guess that’s just her personality and she did win me over at the end, when she expressed gratitude for her ex and talked about how you have to let go of expectations. There were some moments when I thought that she was saying that this is how everyone should deal with a divorce with kids involved, like this was the mature way and the best way for the kids. It does sound admirable on the surface, but not everyone is in her situation and not everyone agrees with this approach. If she personalized it a bit more and added some more caveats about how this works for the two of them and may not work for everyone, I think it would have been a better message. Also, did anyone else get the impression that this wasn’t necessarily her choice but she’s dealing with it?
photos credit: WENN.com