Ben Affleck Preps for Daughters' Dating

04/18/2009 at 04:00 PM ET
Revolutionpix/Fame

“I’m already planning on it – practicing the rocking-chair-and-rifle routine.”

State of Play star Ben Affleck to Today host Matt Lauer, who asked how Ben will cope once his daughters Violet, now 3 years old, and Seraphina, 3 months, are old enough to attract suitors.

Share this story:

Your reaction:

Add A Comment

PEOPLE.com reserves the right to remove comments at their discretion.

Showing 49 comments

Mary on

How come no one ever asks this of parents of boys??

heather lynn on

Ben is so funny! I always love to see what he says because he is so candid about parenting!

sinclair on

“How come no one ever asks this of parents of boys??”

Because women/girls are still ‘property’–i don’t care if it is 2009…feels like 1940.

K.H. on

Mary,
I think if you give this a *little* thought, you will be able to figure it out.

LoveBug on

As a mom of three boys, I wouldn’t mind sitting in a rocking chair and scaring off the little tarts with a shotgun. Sinclair, it IS 2009 and teen girls are as predatory as young males now. Since everyone assumes ALL teens are oversexed today, no one would think to protect teen boys but it’s still cute to let men pretend they’ll keep their daughters safe when the times comes. In the end, Ben and Jen’s girls will grow up in a state where sexual activity starts early and gets wild pretty quick. I wish them good luck. It’s why I left CA.

sfmom on

“Because women/girls are still ‘property’–i don’t care if it is 2009…feels like 1940.”

Oh for crying out loud! Good fathers worry about protecting their daughters…why is this bad? Look at what’s happening to girls today! They’re oversexualized from such a ridiculously young age, they have little to no self respect and look at the “role models” they have in pop culture! Rhianna!? Really? Goes back to her abusive boyfriend?
I say, more dads need to be doing the rocking chair and rifle routine (maybe not literally…although I don’t think it would hurt in some cases ;-)). It’s not about daughters/women being property, it’s about being an involved, protective father.

eternalcanadian on

That’s kind of sexist what Ben said regarding his children dating. I agree with Mary that fathers only say such things about their daughters, but never their sons.

If he and Jennifer talk to their daughters about sexual pleasure and responsibility they might find no need for the rocking chair and rifle. Oprah recently did a show on this (where two 14-year olds were wanting to have sex) and it was so educational and inspiring I hope all parents go to Oprah’s web-site and watch the show to learn about how important it is to talk to their children, both boys and girls, about sexual pleasure and responsibility.

webbster on

parents of boys are probably not asked that because, stereotypically, it is the boy that is wild, dangerous, sex-crazed one who coerces the innocent girl. it’s not always true, of course, but that’s the way society thinks…however, i know of many parents of boys who would say the same thing about the girls who come over. i think children dating is something that all parents are a little wary of…

Kayla on

Why haven’t there been any recent pics of them lately?

Nan on

I saw Ben on a talk show recently and he told them the new baby’s name is Sera. Guess they are calling her that for short, instead of Seraphina.

sinclair on

“Oh for crying out loud! Good fathers worry about protecting their daughters…why is this bad? Look at what’s happening to girls today! They’re oversexualized from such a ridiculously young age, they have little to no self respect and look at the “role models” they have in pop culture! Rhianna!? Really? Goes back to her abusive boyfriend?
I say, more dads need to be doing the rocking chair and rifle routine (maybe not literally…although I don’t think it would hurt in some cases ;-) ). It’s not about daughters/women being property, it’s about being an involved, protective father.”

well, how about fathers being protective of their sons’ sexuality, as well? how about fathers being as involved with their sons’ dating lives, as well? BTW, the rocking chair routine ain’t workin; teen pregnancy/”parenthood” [gotta include the young dads who make the babies, too] is at an all-time high.

Being involved with only daughters amounts to squat if sons are allowed to do as they please–not all, of course–and the double standard continues.

“If he and Jennifer talk to their daughters about sexual pleasure and responsibility they might find no need for the rocking chair and rifle. Oprah recently did a show on this (where two 14-year olds were wanting to have sex) and it was so educational and inspiring I hope all parents go to Oprah’s web-site and watch the show to learn about how important it is to talk to their children, both boys and girls, about sexual pleasure and responsibility.”

THANK YOU, eternalcanadian!! Boys are given a not-so-subtle pass when it comes to dating, along the lines of, “Respect your dates, (*wink, *wink) but you are a young man [with sexual needs].” Heaven forbid we talk to our daughters about owning their sexuality and not leaving it in the hands of their male partners! Well, it will take time; there are some mothers who cannot enough talk to their daughters about periods, let alone masturbation and vibrations!!! WHy are so many parents in denial about basic bodily functions and empowering their kids with simple knowledge?!

Megan on

I honestly cannot believe we are sitting here debating about boys’ vs. girls and whether it’s sexist or not…I mean honestly–I am as liberal as they come but it was a simple question from Matt Lauer and Ben was simply speaking as a loving father of two gorgeous daughters–I hardly think we need to read so much into it…and the debate is NULL AND VOID since Ben and Jen only have girls–so who the heck knows what would be said if they had boys or what not–and honestly who cares…lol IMO it’s such a small issue–it was cute to hear Ben talk about his girls and this family is simply lovely…JMHO

kris on

LOL! He’s pretty funny when he talks about his kids.

Wow to the path this thread has taken. I have boys BTW.

Natasha on

LMAO it’s a harmless comment.

Mrs. R. on

I don’t really know how a dad is supposed to respond to a question about his toddler aged daughter growing up and dating.

I mean what dad really WANTS to think about his daughter growing up and discovering a sexual identity, even if it’s as innocent as going out on a first date?

Kat on

Some of you need more fiber in your diets, seriously. He was joking around. To extrapolate from that comment that Ben Affleck is sexist or that he and his wife don’t plan to give their kids sex ed is unreal.

sinclair on

“Some of you need more fiber in your diets, seriously. He was joking around. To extrapolate from that comment that Ben Affleck is sexist or that he and his wife don’t plan to give their kids sex ed is unreal.”

sorry that some of us live in the real world and get a little too serious for the rest of you. if you don’t care for ‘other’ comments, keep it movin–maybe you need the fiber. that’s the beauty of this comment section, you know, letting people comment on the articles and pertinent social issues, as well. No one is calling him a sexist, don’t get it twisted. What some of us were getting at relates to how people–joking or not–are fiercely protective of their daughters’ sexuality yet not imparting the same messages to their male offspring. Guess what, it is a gender issue, and if it’s not up your alley, whatev.

“and the debate is NULL AND VOID since Ben and Jen only have girls”

oh, megan, since you declared it null and void, it is so? uh, not quite. having offspring of one gender does not mean that jen/ben should not care about how boys date. Who do you think their daughters will be dating?–most likely, BOYS.

Kat on

I think it’s because (and this is from the perspective of a mom with both boys and a girl) the female partner is still so much more at risk in the dating scene.

It is not boys who get pressured to do things to satisfy their boyfriends (and I’m not talking about all the way, either) in middle school bathrooms… and while there are cases of women raping men, the statistics show us that the numbers are much much much higher of men raping women.

Is the answer a shotgun and a rocker? NO… that’s kind of a joke/exaggeration of what a dad really means… what he means is that he’s going to watch out for his daughter and make sure any guys she dates are respectable young men who can be trusted and that his daughter only goes when she is the same.

I can educate my sons to be gentlemen and respect women… but I can’t do that with the other hundred billion guys out there… so yes, I worry more for my daughter… but, like my sons, I’m going to do all I can in terms of education to ensure that she knows how to choose dates and partners well.

brinna on

obviously the comment was a joke, and doesn’t reflect the actual environment in which ben and jennifer will raise their daughters. there won’t literally be a rocking chair and rifle…and anyways, this whole debate is kind of silly, since ben only has girls. it would be different if he had a son and a daughter, and he talked only about worrying about his daughter dating, and nothing about his son…but that’s not the case!

Rosy J on

I missed the interview but since the beginning of time, it has been about daddy’s making sure the boys come courting that they are gonna be accountable for taking advantage of their daughters virture. Today, the term “shotgun” wedding is still used and yet peoople get all uptight when a dad jokes about it. I think it’s cute and old fashioned. My father had 5 daughters and 3 sons and it was his girls he was most protective of. Double standard? Maybe. With today’s so called equal rights for women and sexual liberation crap, some girls are as aggressive as the guys. Sex education and respect for both should be taught.

And now I’ll get down from my soap box and say I love that Ben had the opportunity of his dream to be a father realized and wish him nothing but joy that only those kids can bring. xoxoxo

Zaida on

He should practice, that little girl is STUNNING!

Heather on

Good grief people. We wonder why our society is over stressed and at odds at every turn – it’s a man making a simple joke for crying out loud. My husband has sad the same thing a dozen times over about our two daughters. Pretty sure the reaction was laughter, as it should be.

I hate to say this finally (as I’ve been thinking it for months) but I’ve lost a good amount of respect I used to have for the CBB boards. What used to be so lighthearted and fun has turned into borderline nasty. So sad.

Thought this was adorable, Ben clearly loves his girls.

CelebBabyLover on

Kayla- Per CBB, Ben and Jen’s reps have asked them to take a break from posting photos of the girls online, and they’re trying to respect that. :)

melissa on

man alive at least i can come here for some good laughs! i knew the minute i read what he had said someone would find something wrong with it!! and as a parent of both boys and a daugther quite frankly i worry more about her then i would the boys.. perhaps becuz she is 5 foot nothing and weighs about 100 pounds and has quite the little figure on her and my oldest is 6 foot 2 and weighs in at 200 pounds and i am pretty sure he can take care of himself if some chick hits on him.. but again that is JMO.. but thanks for the laughs!!
as for ben.. that made me laugh..what down to earth parents him and jenn seem to be! good for them!

CelebBabyLover on

sfmom- As far as Rihanna’s concerned…Haven’t you heard of second chances? People can and do change, and it sounds like Chris is making an effort to do so (he has mentioned that he regrets what happened and that he is recieving consuling from his pastor and his mother. I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of male celebs who do similar things and actually admitt that they made a mistake AND are working on changing their behavior).

If Chris were to abuse Rihanna again, then I’d certainly hope that she leaves him. However, so long as he’s willing to work on changing his behavior and this is the one and only time he’s done something like that (well, that we know of, but you can bet that if he’d done something like this in the past, it would have made the news just like this incident did), I see no problem with her giving him one more chance.

Getting back on topic…I want to add to all that’s already been said that fathers just naturally seem to be more protective of their daughters than their sons (and mothers seem to be more protective of their sons than their daughters).

J on

“that’s the beauty of this comment section, you know, letting people comment on the articles and pertinent social issues, as well.”

Sinclair, if that’s the case then you should be ok with what Kat said since, you know, she’s just commenting as well, it’s ok for you not to care for some comments yet Kat can’t? How is that fair in regards to “the beauty of this comment section”?

Are there any articles where there isn’t an argument anymore?

sinclair on

J, THAT IS MY POINT.I am okay with what Kat wrote, but Kat does not have to like with or agree with the more SERIOUS discussions at hand.

sil on

come on people! he was J O K I N G!!!! I think he is funny and I too feel the same about my daughters, and I’m a mom! so I guess is normal for dads to be worried about the future of their girls. He is jealous of his princesses, what’s the problem??? he is a good dad.

Amelia on

I don’t think that being protective of your daughters is taking a step backwards in terms of gender equality. Girls have a much higher chance of catching an STD from a guy than the other way around (as much as I hate it, that’s just how anatomy works). Plus, it is pretty easy (and common) for a guy to completely disappear when he gets a girl pregnant, leaving her completely alone to deal with it. If I ever have daughter, I’M going to be the one with a shotgun by the door!! lol

Lucy on

He doesn’t even have a son. Only daughters. Why would he talk about protecting his hypothetical son? You all need to grow up and take some chill pills. It was a harmless, cute comment regarding his daughters’.

UggaMugga.com on

My kids have the same big sister and big brother shirts: http://uggamugga.blogspot.com/2008/05/pluto-sibling-shirts.html

Lee on

I think the reason why fathers,(both parents actually) are more protective of their girls because in the case of a teenage girl getting pregnant, it’s almost always the girl sacrificing her life for the kid while the boy has the option of not being in the childs life and it happens more than you think. We all know of girls in this situation so I’m surprised no one mentioned this factor in their comments.

Lee on

(oh I read one comment above talking about teen pregnancy, thanks Sinclair ) And the thing with Rihanna it doesn’t matter if Chris Brown is getting help, she should have left him alone in the process because she needs to get help to heal from the abuse.

Marie Snyard on

He was talking to Matt Lauer when he asked about what he would do
when his daughters start dating Ben gave that smile and ‘JOKED
THAT HE WOULD SIT IN A ROCKIN CHAIR WITH A GUN VERY 60’S THING TO
DO’

Mirella on

that was hilarious! :-)

Alex on

This is just a dad worrying about his children, and since he only has girls, that’s why it is biased.

On a more general note, girls are just as predatory as boys are these days, more so sometimes, which is why I agree with the sentiment of the complaints here. Boys are just as likely to get hurt in teenage relationships, and while many of us understand that and respect it, things will never be equal until boys can get pregnant. The single parent stats amongst teenage parenthood are still high and are the prevalent group in the UK. That essentially means that in many cases, girls are the ones left with the responsibilities and the repercussions that come from having sex. And as long as that is still true, the gender bias that comes with parents worrying about their children’s sex lives will never be neutral. That was kinda longwinded, but I hope I’ve explained myself okay!

sinclair on

“He doesn’t even have a son. Only daughters. Why would he talk about protecting his hypothetical son?”

LOL. wow, do ppl read? no one said he had a son. i think you missed the original points of the discussion.

bre on

Who cares if he can’t speak of a hypothetical son. Mary asked why does no one ever ask this question to parents of boys. I certainly have never heard it posed to a father of only sons, so I think the question was valid.

Lucy on

Sinclair, yes, people do read. I just think this whole discussion is ridiculous and BASED on irrevelance. He has daughters, he talks about and jokes about his daughters. Why boys were brought into this conversation, Lord only knows… *eye roll*

Erika on

Wow, Am I the only one that thought this comment was cute/funny rather than offensive? My father said and still says the same thing about my sister and I, so maybe I just learned to have a sense of humor unlike some?

chester1428 on

Lucy, if the whole thing is ridiculous to you, then ignore it! wow…

Just because you don’t see the point in their discussion does not make it irrelevant. And Erika, it was a sorta cute comment (the shotgun and chair spiel), but it’s kinda dated, to me, at least.

Thank you, Bre!

chester1428 on

melissa, your son is tall and a solid weight; yes, he can take care of himself of a ‘chick’ hits on him, but I think this is more about teaching young men how to respect/treat women, so their parents won’t be so up in arms when they start dating. Maybe you would not have to worry about your “five foot nothing daughter” if our culture expected the same level of decorum from young men as it does from young women. (*and i am not saying all young women live up to this expectation). We ask our daughters to be chaste and “save themselves” but the guys still expect to ‘get some’ one way or another without the same stigma that’s attached to young girls. Rosy, even if girls are more aggressive these days, the sexual double standard remains, which is what I think some of this conversation alludes to.

collette on

OMG get a grip, he is just joking why is everyone so quick to jump on what he says he was asked this question he didnt just come out and say it so surely is it not down to the interviewer asking the question about “potential suitors” than Ben just coming out with it. Seriously i cant believe some idiotic people are thinking there is more to this than just a tounge in cheek comment.

Courtney on

WOW…..does EVERY posting need 40+ comments pointing out every non politically correct way of doing something??? Or saying something??

I have 3 girls and 1 boy. My husband and I joke around all the time about when our girls are old enough to date. We don’t talk about our son’s dating days in the same way. Like it or not, I do worry that my girls won’t be able to stand up for themselves, or are more likely to be talked into or forced into something. They are also the ones who carry babies for 9 months. So we can talk all we want to that we should be concerned about both, and while I am, I will always be more worried about my girls simply because of the fact that a getting pregnant will affect a girl more than the boy…And while I cringe thinking about my kids having sex, we are a very open family and already teach our children about love, marriage, sex…etc.

Lucy on

ITA with Collette.

chester1428 on

courtney, chill–some people just had an issue they wanted to talk about. no one complained about ben not being PC. Wow, some rabid people on here!

Shannon on

I don’t know why I even read the comments on here anymore. Oh no, wait, I remember now. You people are always good for a laugh. It’s amazing the how people can turn even the simplest things into an all out war over something that they made up. He wasn’t asked about boys at dating age, now was he? No. He was asked about his girls. Every man I know will make the same kind of goofy comment about his daughters dating. I make those comments. I also joke around about scaring the heck out of any potential girlfriends my son might have, as any mother I know also does. Why do we have to take something like a loving father making a joking comment on the spot, and turn it into a big debate about the human race being sexist, etc, etc. I understand everyone has the right to make comments and express their own opinions and all, but geesh! This are getting ridiculous!

Now on to the original topic, I love this family! I think that Ben and Jen seem like really attentive, caring, normal parents, and it’s obvious that Violet is a happy thriving little girl. I can’t wait to see pictures of Seraphina! I love the names they chose for their girls!

D on

Shannon, nicely said. I couldn’t agree more about the comments.

As for this family, I totally adore them too. They are so cute!

kmf on

Shannon- well said!

advertisement

From Our Partners

From Our Partners

Sign up for our daily newsletter and other special offers.
    Choose your newsletters
Thank you for signing up! Your request may take up to one week to be processed.
    see all newsletters