Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt were one of Hollywood’s most popular power couples for nearly a decade. Yet, in 2016, Pitt and Jolie unexpectedly decided to go their separate ways. During an interview with Vogue India, Jolie explained that she decided to divorce her ex-husband to focus on the “wellbeing” of their children.
“I separated for the wellbeing of my family,” Jolie said. “It was the right decision. I continue to focus on their healing.”
Together, Jolie and Pitt share six children—Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh, and twins Vivienne and Knox. The couple began their relationship in 2004, but it wasn’t until 2014 that they wed. Two years later, Jolie filed for divorce. At the time, she cited irreconcilable differences as the motive, telling the media that she was doing “what’s in the best interest of taking care of her family.” Since then, Jolie has shied away from the topic. This has left room for public speculation and hearsay, which Jolie says has impacted her family.
“Some have taken advantage of my silence, and the children see lies about themselves in the media, but I remind them that they know their own truth and their own minds,” she further shared with Vogue India. “In fact, they are six very brave, very strong young people.”
On the other hand, Pitt has remained open about his battle with alcoholism and other struggles he faced during their marriage. Reports also surfaced claiming that the actor had a strained relationship with his son, Maddox, resulting in a near physical altercation. In an interview with NPR, Pitt alluded to the end of his marriage and how he’s learning to accept his hand in the situation.
“A breakup of a family is certainly an eye-opener that as one—and I’m speaking in general again—but as one needs to understand, I had to understand my own culpability in that, and what can I do better,” he said. “Because I don’t want to go on like this.”