Matthew McConaughey Offers Rare Glimpse Into How He's Raising His Children

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Camila Alves, Matthew McConaughey, Family
Camila Alves, Matthew McConaughey, Family

Matthew McConaughey takes being a dad very seriously.

Speaking with Town and Country, the Oscar winner and wife Camila Alves opened up about how they have been raising their three childrenLevi, 11, Vida, 10, and Livingston, 7—out of the spotlight.

"Sometimes loving your kids means giving them just what they want," he explained to the outlet. "Other times it means tough love. Affluent people can give their kids everything they want, but they're not usually going to get what they need. Loving a child is a lot harder if you really give a damn. ‘No' takes a lot more energy. It's a lot easier to say ‘yes.'"

Much to his surprise, Alves hinted that McConaughey is actually the one to give in when push comes to shove. He quipped, "From the snicker that my wife's giving me, it seems that I'm more consistently the yes guy. She's probably right."

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Still on the topic of kids, the longtime couple revealed that their eldest son played a major role in helping them launch their Just Keep Livin' Foundation, which strives to empower high school students by giving them the tools to lead active lives and make healthy choices for a better future.

"When you have your first child and you're in the position that Matthew is, whoever gets that first photo will make a lot of money," Alves explained. "When we found out that the person was going to make over a million dollars on a photo, we were like, ‘No. We're going to do an exclusive and get the money and put it into the foundation.'"

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Speaking to the organization's mission statement, McConaughey chimed in, saying, "I always knew I wanted it to be kids, because I wanted the entire foundation to provide prevention before we needed a cure."

"High school's the last place you can catch somebody and get them on the right track, before they no longer have to listen to a teacher or parent," he continued. "If they're screwing up in high school and do some of the same stuff after they graduate, they may go to jail—or worse."

In the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, McConaughey and Alves have been stepping up to give back to those in need. Back in April, the parents of three teamed up with disaster relief organization Bstrong to donate PPE equipment to the first responders in their hometown of Austin, Texas.

While discussing how the pandemic has changed the way they look at philanthropy, The Wedding Planner actor said, "There's going to have to be more self-reliance on staying true to your voluntary obligations. It's already tough; we humans love to procrastinate. In our foundation, one of the things we're trying to teach is self-reliance, saying, "Why do you do it? Do it for you.'"