Christina Ricci opens up about her first marriage, how motherhood helped her out of a nihilistic streak, and why she tried to avoid tabloid attention about her appearance as she transitioned from child star to star young woman.
“I didn’t like it,” says the actress, now 42. Sunday style attention to his changing body. “I’ve never worn clothes to get sexual attention because I’ve always felt that kind of attention in a very threatening way.”
As she reached adulthood, the Addams Family star – who will appear in the new Netflix Wednesday series – leaned into bolder roles, with a “wild and wild” lifestyle to match. Looking back, Ricci sees this period as a “reaction” to his “chaotic” upbringing. Although the Sirens star, who has been estranged from her father since she was a teenager, hasn’t shared many details about her family, she tells the Time that she “grew up in a very chaotic home”. As the youngest of four children, she learned early on how to use her precociousness to her advantage. “My ability to be adorable could diffuse things or distract people,” she notes.
Being “emotionally tuned” as a youngster helped his career take off. But over the years it became “exhausting”, so Ricci learned to ignore his feelings.
“I just didn’t feel any passion, any care,” she says. “I made a lot of big decisions in a completely unbiased way, which ended up being a problem later on – so please note everyone, don’t make big decisions in life when you go through periods of nihilism But it was really a reaction. It was exhausting to be so upset and in pain all the time.
The birth of her son Freddie eight years ago changed everything.
“The birth of my son really shattered my nihilism and it was quite a surprising change,” she says. “I thought I would really like him and feel a lot of emotions towards him. I didn’t realize it was all or nothing.”
Freddie’s father is Ricci’s first husband, James Heerdegen, whom she accused of physical and emotional abuse while she was granted a restraining order last year. Although Ricci is reluctant to talk about this marriage, she did address her struggle to see things as they were.
“Well, I can’t speak for everyone, but it took me a long time to admit what was going on, what it should be called,” says Ricci, who welcomed a daughter with her second husband. Mark Hampton last December. “Denial is very strong. Of course, you don’t want to accept the worst possible thing happening and you put yourself in that situation. So it took me a long time to realize that.”
Beyond its emotional impact, the split also hurt Ricci’s finances, leading her to sell some of the Chanel handbags she had amassed over the course of her career.
“Some of life’s trauma goes hand in hand with financial trauma, protracted court situations, police custody situations, restraining orders,” she says. “That said, I’m fine, no problem. But I learned to use these investment pieces in different ways. I also had a Chanel Joaillerie collection that I put to good use. “
With a new husband, a new baby, and an Emmy-nominated role on yellow jackets, Ricci looks to the future, does not seek pity.
“I think it’s important to say that I don’t feel like a victim in any way,” she says. “I don’t feel sorry for myself. I don’t even want to say, ‘Well, that’s been a really tough road for me.’ Everyone has their personal issues and this was mine, and it was about finding my own value, position, strength and power.
“I tell my story only because I know that, having been in situations like the one I was in, I looked for success stories, stories of people who could get out of it, could recover from it. and just be okay. And so the fact that now I’m in this place where I’m so much better than OK, that’s what makes me be honest about it. Today I’m not ready to talk about it in more depth, but I think it’s important that we have examples for other women – that, as scary as it sounds, changing your life and saving you is the only choice.
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