'Big Little Lies' Star Laura Dern Discusses The Challenges Of Being A Single Parent

Laura Dern kids

Big Little Lies star Laura Dern recently opened up about the challenges of being a single parent as mom to Ellery, 18, and Jaya, 14, from her marriage to musician Ben Harper.

The pair got married in 2005 and Dern, 52 split from the singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist in 2013. In an interview, the star told Modern Luxury that at times single parenting can be quite “stressful,” but she cannot deny that it also brings a lot of happiness.

“On good days, I am kind enough to remember that there are growing pains, and it is all overwhelming and not easy or always fun,” she shared.

“On the hard days, it’s stressful and there is too much going on as a single parent – and it can be hard to carve out a minute for yourself. I have never had anybody else bully me in my single parenting life. I am lucky to have champions around me, but I can definitely do it myself.”

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It's not the first time the actress has talked about being a single parent. Back in May, Dern told InStyle that her single-parent status serves as motivation in her career and it helps her embrace her true self.

“The more I learn about my mistakes as a mother, the deeper I enjoy how fully I love my children. Because I can let them know I really screw up sometimes. I hide from blame in a lot of areas in my life, but I’m trying not to do that as a mom,” she said.


Throughout her dazzling career, Laura Dern, the daughter of actors Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd, has played an array of women, like in Foxes in 1980, as a girl in thick glasses trying to appear worldly. The versatile American actress has starred in films like Jurassic Park and earned critical acclaim for her work on the TV series Enlightened.

In two extraordinary recent roles, one for which she was nominated for an Oscar and another for which she won a Prime-Time Emmy and a Golden Globe-- Jean-Marc Vallée’s Wild (2014) and the TV show Big Little Lies (2017), Dern plays a mom, but these two women are completely different-- Bobbi, the cheerfully supportive earth mother living under the shadow of her former marriage to an abusive man and coping with cancer in Wild, in contrast to Big Little Lies’ Renata, a business executive with ferocious maternal instincts.

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Tags: Celebrities, Celebrity Kids

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