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Christopher Meloni’s Kids Turned Him Into a Big Softie! Meet the ‘Law & Order’ Star’s 2 Children

Christopher Meloni has portrayed the badass role of Detective Elliot Stabler in Law & Order since 1999, but he’s a big softie when he’s around his two kids. Though fans are familiar with watching the actor fight crime on TV, Christopher can’t help but let his guard down when he’s around his children, Sophia and Dante.

The Law & Order: Special Victims Unit star is the father of his kiddos with his longtime wife, Doris Sherman Williams. The couple has been going strong for longer than Christopher’s tenure on the iconic drama series, having walked down the aisle together in 1995.

Two years after saying “I do,” Christopher and the Hollywood production designer started their family and welcomed their first child, daughter Sophia, in 2001. The lovebirds later completed their brood when son Dante was born in 2004.

Though Christopher’s dedication to Law & Order has gone unwavered over the years, he’s been even more committed to his role as a dad. It certainly seems like Sophia and Dante couldn’t be more grateful for their famous father, as it’s not uncommon for his daughter to praise the Happy! alum on social media.

For Christopher’s birthday in April 2019, Sophia posted a touching tribute and credited her dad with being the best role model. “Happy birthday to a legend. Your wise father-ism guide me, your creativity inspires me and your fashion sense (as pictured) is absolutely incendiary,” she gushed in the caption. “I wouldn’t want to be anyone else’s mini-me.”

Even if it’s not a special occasion, Sophia loves sharing the cutest snapshots with Christopher on her Instagram page. “Hi dad,” she captioned a black and white photo booth pic. The brunette beauty also posted a snap of her parents hanging out at home amid the coronavirus pandemic in early 2020, writing, “Notes from the inside.”

While it’s obvious Sophia and Dante feel so lucky to have the Emmy nominee as their father, Christopher joked his parenting isn’t always a walk in the park. Speaking to USA Today in 2014, the handsome hunk said he actually considers himself a “crazy” parent.

“I think my kids would call me a little crazy,” he explained. “I’m very physical, very affectionate. I’m also very disciplined and focused on education. That’s one thing that was instilled in me, one place in life where there’s no compromise.”

When they first started working together on Law & Order in 1999, Christopher and his longtime costar, Mariska Hargitay, built a strong friendship both onscreen and off. He later chose the Emmy winner as Sophia’s godmother after she was born. They have had several reunions over the years, giving fans of the show nostalgia after watching them work so well together portraying their respective characters. 

“The birth of his first child and being privy to his amazing, solid relationship with his wife, before I had that for myself — I think that Chris and Sherman played a really big role for me, to see this really stable couple that loved each other,” Mariska recalled in a February 2021 interview with People about the early days of their friendship.

To learn more about Sophia and Dante, keep scrolling!