Helen Mirren Never Wanted Children, Only Mourned the Loss of That Possibility for 20 Minutes of Her Life: 'I Sobbed'

Not everyone wants to have children. It can be hard for people to come to terms with that. Some may regret later that they didn’t have kids. Some regret for all of 20 minutes! One of these people includes actor Dame Helen Mirren, who says she does not regret not having kids.

The Queen actor only regretted it for 20 minutes of her life after watching the movie Parenthood. Here’s what you need to know about Mirren’s choice.

Helen Mirren’s acting career came first

Mirren has had an extraordinary career spanning decades. The Oscar-winning actor is married to director Taylor Hackford. The couple started their relationship back in 1986. They married in December 1997. Born Ilyena Lydia Mironoff on July 26, 1945, in England.

Mirren is well-known for her role in the British drama series Prime Suspect. In the series, she played Detective Jane Tennison. The actor is also renowned for her role as Elizabeth II in 2006’s The Queen, earning her an Academy Award.

Mirren’s father was Russian, while her mother was Scottish. Her last name was Mironoff, and her father Anglicanized it when she was 10 years old. Mirren joined National Youth Theatre when she was 18 years old.

She joined the Royal Shakespeare Company the following year where she spent most of the next 15 years of her career. Mirren later appeared in roles like Cleopatra in Anthony and Cleopatra and Cressida in Troilus and Cressida.

Helen Mirren on why she never had children

Mirren loves her career and never really wanted to have children. When asked if she ever wanted kids, she told ABC News, “I was always too engaged in my life as an actress. At that time, I couldn’t comprehend that you could incorporate a child into that without letting a child down somehow.”

She continued to state, “It was never an absolute conscious decision, it was just, ‘Oh, maybe next year, maybe next year, until really there was no next year.”

“I love children, they are so funny and sweet, but I never wanted my own,” she said, according to the Mirror.

Having children of her own never appealed to Mirren, who has two stepchildren from her husband’s previous marriage. The only time The Debt actor admits to having mourned not having had children was when she watched the 1989 family comedy-drama film Parenthood.

“I have never had a moment of regret about not having children. Well, I lie. When I watched the movie, Parenthood, I sobbed for about 20 minutes,” Mirren explained, according to the Mirror.

She was sad that she would never experience motherhood: “I realized I would never experience that, and for about 20 minutes, I sobbed for the loss of that and the fact that I never experienced it.”

Tragedy strikes Mirren’s beloved stepson

Helen Mirren and her husband released a joint statement after his son, Rio Hackford, died on April 14, 2022. The 51-year-old was Hackford’s child from a previous relationship.

Known for his roles in films like Raising Helen, Jonah Hex, Fred Claus, and Swingers, Rio’s most recent appearance was in The Mandalorian on Disney+ and Pam & Tommy on Hulu. The businessman also owned a bar.

Rio’s cause of death was uveal melanoma, a rare and aggressive eye cancer. In People magazine, Mirren and Hackford urged everyone to get tested, “We would beg everyone reading this to get their eyes tested at least once a year, which might save their loved ones from this cancer.”

The couple said they “are both inspired by the life of our son and stepson, Rio Hackford, and heartbroken by his loss.” What a sad loss indeed.

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