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When Ben Affleck thanked Jennifer Garner in his Oscar speech, it should have been an "aww" moment. Unfortunately, it came off as more of a "whaa?" moment.
When Ben thanked his wife for "working on our marriage for ten Christmases" and added that "it is work, but the best kind of work" -- well, let's just say it wasn't the usual "I'd like to thank my lovely wife" speech. It seemed to hint at some very specific troubles. But according to Jen, Ben's heart was in the right place.
"I know Ben, I knew he meant it as the hugest, warmest compliment in the world," Garner told the UK Telegraph. "I think he was saying, 'Look, what we have is really real and I value it above all and I’m in it with you and I know you are in it with me.' That’s the way I took it.'"
Maybe Garner should write her husband's speeches from now on, because her version sounded way better than what he actually said! Even those close to her, she admitted in the interview, weren't sure how to interpret Ben's words.
"I had a friend call and say, 'Are you okay?'" Garner recalled.
While the unusual Best Picture speech inspired some divorce rumors, it certainly could have been worse. It seems obvious that Affleck was speaking from the heart, not just coughing up a rehearsed line. Also, he spent a decent portion of the speech talking about Garner -- unlike some Oscar recipients, who have managed to forget their spouse entirely as soon as that statue is in their hands. (We doubt that Chad Lowe will ever forgive ex-wife Hilary Swank.)
And the truth is, marriages do take work. The parents of Violet, 7, Seraphina, 4, and Samuel, 1, have been together for a decade, and in the pressure-cooker of Hollywood, it's rare for celebrities to celebrate double-digit anniversaries. (They've actually only been married for seven years, eight on June 29th, but still.)
We can appreciate Jen and Ben not pretending that their marriage is fun and sexy and glamorous every minute of every day. Putting on a front is exhausting, and probably led to the demise of quite a few high-profile relationships. If they keep up the honesty and humor, we bet Jen and Ben will be celebrating many more Christmases together.