From the hot girl in town to America’s sweetheart to a model mom, Jennifer Garner has held plenty of roles in the public eye.
For the 25th anniversary issue of InStyle, the 47-year-old actress and mother of three opens up about her transformation in the spotlight.
“When you’re one of the ‘hot girls’ of the moment, you’re making choices that define you,” she explains. “I was defined first by choosing to go on hiatus, and then I was very quickly defined by pregnancies and babies. Now my choices are defined by different things.”
Fame is something that Garner has grappled with for decades, especially now that she has kids.
“I even stopped going to the farmers market because I was being photographed there constantly. I realized, ‘I’m ruining the farmers market for everyone; this is selfish,’” she admits.
She’s constantly deciding how much of her children’s lives she should share with the public. Garner and her ex-husband, Ben Affleck, are parents to daughters Violet, 13, and Seraphina, 10, and son Samuel, 7.
“I guard my kids’ privacy as much as I possibly can, and I’ve never posted pictures of them on Instagram,” she says. “I’m sure there are times my kids would really love to see themselves reflected on social media in a fun way and to have the attention they would get from that. But I’ve fought too hard against it. It would feel hypocritical.”
These days, Garner is encouraged by the female support she’s received in Hollywood.
“I used to see Reese [Witherspoon] mainly because we have sons the same age. But she was really the only person in that kind of position in Hollywood that I could call,” she notes. “Now there are so any other women in the industry I can reach out to. Feeling like part of a whole instead of thinking, ‘Oh my gosh, I’d better hold on to my spot as tightly as I can or we’ll all be subsumed,’ has been the hugest gift and the biggest game changer.”
The 25th anniversary of InStyle is on sale Aug. 16.
For more from Garner, watch the clip below: