Mom of four Annette Bening loves all of her kids equally. The 20th Century Women star, 61, went through a new experience in her life when her daughter began transitioning into a boy at the age of 14. Now, 13 years later, Annette says she’s “very, very proud” of Stephen for being so strong.

“He’s managed something that’s very challenging with great style and great intelligence,” she said in a recent interview with AARP the magazine. “He’s an articulate, thoughtful person, and I’m very, very proud of him.”

Annette Bening at the TIFF Premiere of 'The Report'
Todd Williamson/January Images/Shutterstock

As a parent, Annette wanted to shield her children — Stephen, 27, Benjamin, 25, Isabel, 22, and Ella, 19 — away from the ugly side of the world. “When I was younger, part of me thought I could save my children from having to suffer, which was, of course, ridiculous,” she explained.

Ultimately, she soon realized that it’s important for them to experience life on their own. “They have to go through their struggles,” the American Beauty actress said. “They’re very much their own people now.”

Annette shares all of her children with her husband, Warren Beatty. Now that they’re all grown up and have moved out of their house, Annette has been missing them more than ever!

“I really miss them, quite frankly,” she recently confessed to Closer Weekly at the Toronto International Film Festival premiere of her film Hope Gap. “I get that they’re adults, and they want to be off in their lives — I love that, and I’m really proud of them. I try to get them to text me as often as possible, which doesn’t always work.”

Annette Bening and Warren Beatty at the 2019 Tony Awards
Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, her kids might come back home to visit her. In the meanwhile, Annette has just been enjoying her time with her husband and their dog at home. “We got her as a puppy, and she’s a doll,” she said. “She’s huge now, and we love taking her on walks.”

But no matter what, Annette kids will always have a special place in her heart. “There’s love for your parents, your family, your spouse, your partner, your friends, but the nature of the connection you have with your children, there’s nothing like it,” she explained. “It has its own character — it’s so serious and so powerful, and it’s a prism through which I see everything.”

We love this Hollywood family so much!

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