Anyone who has co-parented with an ex knows exactly how hard navigating that journey can be, and for many couples that experience is not always the easiest to figure out. The same goes for celebrity exes who are also manoeuvring the world of co-parenting, one that is in most cases a winding and often unconventional one to working out what works best for you and your family.
Angelina Jolie & Brad Pitt
Since their 2016 split, Jolie and Pitt have been working together to find a way to co-parent their six children – Pax, Zahara, Maddox, Shiloh, Vivienne and Knox.
Speaking to Vanity Fair in 2017, the actress said of her children: “They’ve been very brave. They were very brave. We’re all just healing from the events that led to the filing…we care for each other and care about our family, and we are both working towards the same goal.”
Khloe Kardashian & Tristan Thompson
Khloe Kardashian always ensures her daughter, True Thompson, comes first, even after it became public that her partner, True’s father Tristan Thompson, had cheated on her. Speaking to Ryan Seacrest, the Good American founder said the process was initially “really hard”, especially given True’s first birthday was a few weeks following the scandal.
“I always wanted that to be obviously a mummy and daddy thing. In my family it is everyone who is going through this breakup,” she said on On Air With Ryan Seacrest. “So I knew in my family it was going to be a lot of high tension, but I still wanted to do what was best for True.”
The reality star later asked her mother Kris Jenner for co-parenting advise on an episode of Keeping Up With The Kardashians. “Co-parenting’s hard and you also have to, like, respect both parents,” she said. “But I don’t know what I feel comfortable with. I’m sure he won’t make me do anything I don’t feel comfortable doing, but then is that even fair for True to not see her dad? Because that’s going to be a long however many months.”
Gwyneth Paltrow & Chris Martin
The couple, famous for their ‘conscious uncoupling’ in 2014, has been open about co-parenting their two children Apple and Moses, with the Goop founder admitting their method was “definitely imperfect.”
“We’re a family,” Paltrow said during a 2016 TODAY interview. “Even though we’re not in a romantic relationship, we’re a true family and we like to do things to reinforce that we’re a family for the children and for each other. He’s like my brother. I’m very close to him.”
The couple regularly holiday together, with Martin even joining his ex-wife for her honeymoon with new husband Brad Falchuk following their 2018 wedding.
Kourtney Kardashian & Scott Disick
“I think the hardest part [of co-parenting] was when we both started new relationships,” Kourtney said, adding, “Because that caused fights between you and I about introducing the kids…We had to literally go to therapy to talk to get through it, to be able to communicate together.”
The former couple added they’ve been able to share parenting duties without getting lawyers involved. “We just did it on our own, came up with our own schedule of what made the most sense with the kids,” the eldest Kardashian sister said.
“I think we also knew that if we ever got into something like that, I don’t think you and I would have the relationship that we have,” Disick added. “That’s huge. I don’t know that other people have what we have, they’re fighting with each other and they’re not looking to compromise, they’re not looking to make exceptions or work with each other and the only way they can go is the legal route…I think we are very, very, very lucky how we have everything.”
Rachel Bilson & Hayden Christensen
“We’re still kind of trying to figure it out,” the actress told People. “It’s a tricky one. And I don’t know that there is any right way, necessarily.”
The O.C. alum added, “We say mummy has a house and daddy has a house but she’s pretty young to have an in-depth conversation. Most important for me is that Briar is okay and secure and stable. No matter what I’m dealing with or how much it hurts or how much anger there is, it’s just about her.”
Reese Witherspoon & Ryan Phillippe
While it’s been over a decade since the two Hollywood stars split, the former couple has shared how they make co-parenting of their two children, Ava and Deacon, work.
Witherpoon previously told ABC News, “I always tell my kids, you’re so lucky cause it’s not just your mum and dad who love you. You have grandparents that love you, a stepdad that loves you and it’s always such a great opportunity to have as many people in your life nurturing you and carrying you and guiding you in this life.”
Phillippe also told Entertainment Tonight, “You have to get to that point as a divorced parent, as any parent, where you’re not putting yourself first.”
Channing Tatum & Jenna Dewan
The couple, who split in 2018 following nine years of marriage, has spoken out about how they’re handling co-parenting their daughter Everly.
Speaking to Harper’s Bazaar U.S., Dewan said: “We’re just getting used to it. We’re in a very positive energy together, trying to be the best parents to Everly. We support each other.”
Anna Faris & Chris Pratt
The two actors split in 2017 after eight years of marriage, and share son Jack together.
“We are great and there’s so much friendship and love, and we surround Jack with love, and funny, kind, happy people, and as a result, he is really happy,” Faris told Extra about figuring out co-parenting. “We constantly reinforce what a great kid he is,” she added to E! News. “[We] try to discipline when he’s being a little bit naughty. I think the key is surrounding him with a lot of joy and happiness, which he has a ton of.”
Noami Watts & Liev Schrieber
The couple, who dated for 11-years before announcing their split in 2016, has previously spoken about how important maintaining their friendship is for the sake of their children.
Speaking to Sunday TODAY in 2018, Schrieber said: “It’s important to support each other. I was making some jokes at breakfast about mummy with the boys and their eyes light up when I talk about her. You can see how important it is to them that their parents care about each other.”
The couple shares two sons, Alexander and Samuel.
Drew Barrymore & Will Kopelman
After four years of marriage, the couple’s divorce was finalised in 2016 and since then the actress has shared what she believes is the “secret” to their co-parenting.
Speaking to Entertainment Tonight of her two daughters Olive and Frankie, she said: “I think plans, constant plans. So you just be a family. Families are many different definitions in this day and age.”
In a reflective Instagram post, Barrymore added: “Will and I continue to marvel at what we made and try to be the best co-parents we can be. It’s not always easy and the point is…nothing in life is. But it doesn’t mean that any bitter outweighs the sweet!”
Ben Affleck & Jennifer Garner
The couple, who announced their divorce in 2015 after a decade of marriage, continue to co-parent their kids Violet, Seraphina and Samuel, together.
Speaking to CBS, the actor said: “We’re doing our very best and we’re putting our kids first and that’s how we’re focusing on our day to day lives and we don’t know what the future’s going to hold, but each step that we take is one where we prioritise our children and everything else comes second,” adding Garner is “somebody that I admire and respect and remain excellent friends with.”
The actress has also spoken of their “modern family”, telling TODAY: “Ben was working in London, on Justice League, and I felt like, ‘Well, the kids should have that experience.’ And he and I are great friends, and we just all went en masse.”
Jennifer Lopez & Marc Anthony
The couple, who share twins Emme and Maximillian together, are not afraid to share how they work together on co-parenting their children.
J.Lo told HuffPost 2014: “Marc and I are very good friends, we’re very supportive. I feel it’s my responsibility as a mum when their dad is not there to let them know that their dad loves them very much because that’s the doubt that they have when he’s not around or they haven’t seen him. That’s my job to do that the same way it’s his job when he’s with them.”
However, the singer admits it was not always an easy journey for the pair, telling W magazine, “When my marriage ended, it was not easy to find forgiveness. It wasn’t the dream that I had hoped for, and it would have been easier to fan the flames of resentment, disappointment, and anger. But Marc is the father of my children, and that’s never going away. So, I have to work to make things right. And that is, by far, the hardest work I do.”
Miranda Kerr & Orlando Bloom
The Australian model and American actor share son Flynn together, and have previously opened up about working together to figure out what’s best for him – and according to Bloom, the pair are pretty good at it.
“With Miranda, there was a sense that I don’t want my son to go back through the internet where people have made up lies [about us],” he said to ELLE UK. “Miranda and I have a remarkable relationship. We co-parent really well.”
He added, “It’s good. We’re all grown-up. She happens to be someone who is very visible, but I don’t think anybody cares what I’m up to. Nor should they. It’s between us. It’s better to set an example for kids and show that [break-ups] don’t have to be about hate.”