The notoriously private duo announced the news in a statement. And while the couple said that they are splitting on amicable terms and are still committed to co-parenting their children, they gave no real reason for the split.
But here are some of the factors we think could have led to the Hollywood stars ultimately growing apart.
1. Affleck became Batman
Garner told reporters back in March that she and Affleck switch working so one of them can be at home with the kids. But since Affleck landed the huge role of Batman, his schedule, no doubt, hasn’t allowed for much time off, which means Garner has probably been doing most of the parenting, hasn’t seen Affleck much and also hasn’t been able to grow her own career in the process.
2. Garner wants to focus on her career again
A source close to the couple told Fox News, “Jen is excited to get back to work. She took a step back to focus on her marriage and family but wants to return to making more movies.”
She is currently filming a project called Nine Lives, and it could be that getting back to work this year has made her re-prioritize.
3. There has been trouble for a while
Another insider, reportedly friends with Garner, who spoke with Radar Online, said there has been trouble in the relationship for a really long time. It just finally reached a breaking point.
“Often, when Ben and Jen have a problem, they just agree to ride it out and be miserable together until they can get some time apart.”
4. They were tired of all the rumors
Of course they aren’t separating because of tabloid gossip. But it could be why they decided to announce their divorce sooner rather than later. No one would blame the two for being tired of all the stories about the impending end to their marriage. For the sake of their children, they might have made the announcement sooner than they otherwise would have to give the gossip time to die down so they can more quickly move on with their lives in peace.
5. Alimony changes after a decade of marriage
Under California law, “The court automatically retains jurisdiction over a divorced couple who were married for more than ten years,” according to Gawker. Again, the two obviously didn’t get divorced because of alimony payments. But it could be a key reason why the announcement came now rather than down the line. The couple’s 10-year anniversary was on June 29.
6. The marriage became work
Affleck was criticized for calling his marriage “work” during his 2013 Oscar acceptance speech for Argo. And while most just thought the comment was taken out of context, now it could be a sign that problems were brewing between the two.
7. Affleck has a poker problem
According to OK! magazine, Garner was none too happy when Affleck ditched his daddy duties to play in a high-stakes poker game in Las Vegas. Affleck was banned from playing poker at the Hard Rock Casino & Hotel in Vegas in May 2014 and admitted to counting cards that September.
8. Affleck’s lies revealed in Sony hack
Thanks to Sony hack e-mails, it was revealed that Affleck was involved in a cover up to keep details about his slave-owning ancestor out of a PBS documentary he was featured in. Though Affleck apologized for his part in the censorship, it still may not have impressed Garner.
9. They just aren’t forever
People grow and change — and sometimes that growth and change leads them apart. So as tempting as it is to want to search for a gossipy reason behind the divorce, the truth might be really simple: They grew apart.
Hopefully the decision leads to a happier future for both of them and for their three children.