Women aren’t the only ones to experience societal pressures of starting a family by a certain age; men also struggle with the stigma. As he nears his 40th birthday next year, actor Andrew Garfield got honest about the trajectory of his life and how he’s learning to accept the ebbs and flows of each chapter without judgment.
In an interview with British GQ, he discussed that after a busy season in tv and film, he is enjoying some much-needed time off, sharing, “I’ve been thinking about this a lot, the reason for this weird peace I’ve been experiencing. I think the loss of my mum was a big thing. That cataclysm is a forever-reverberating shift into a deeper awareness of reality. Existence. The shortness of this window we have. I think that’s working on me in profound ways that I’m probably not even aware of.”
“I’m here with you, eating a burger, just contemplating existence,” he told to GQ’s Alex Pappademas. “Trying to fill my days with as much nonsense as I possibly can. So that’s interesting. Releasing myself from the societal obligation of procreating by the time I’m 40 has been an interesting thing to do with myself.”
“It’s more about accepting a different path than what was kind of expected of me from birth, he continues. “Like, By this time, you will have done this, and you will have at least one child – that kind of thing. I think I have some guilt around that. And obviously, it’s easier for me as a man…”
When Pappademas comments that there’s still time for him to be a father, he says, “Yes. No, we’ll see. [Laughs] Life seems to be a perpetual practice of letting shit go. Letting go of an idea of how a thing should look, or be, or feel. And that one’s a big one [to let go of] because, of course, I would’ve loved my mum to have met my kids if I’m going to have kids. And she will, in spirit. She’ll be there for it. I know she’s there for all the big ones.”
Andrew’s mother, Lynn Garfield, passed away in 2019 from pancreatic cancer.