Considering James Van Der Beek is “five kids deep” at home with wife Kimberly Brook, he isn’t afraid to share some friendly tips and tricks with fellow overwhelmed dads and moms. Instead, the Dawson’s Creek alum offered some of “the best” parenting advice he ever received.
“All I can conclude is there’s no one ‘right way’ to raise a tiny human,” James, 42, captioned a social media post on Wednesday, February 26. “But, the good news is … kids will totally teach you how to raise them. I swear. It’s not about how you think they ‘should’ be raised, or how that book you read says to raise them, or how your parents raised you, or even how you raised their sibling — ‘cause each kid is different.”
The Varsity Blues actor — who is the proud dad of kids Olivia, 9, Joshua, 7, Annabel, 6, Emilia, 3, Gwendolyn, 1 — explained how children “come out the box with different strengths, different challenges, different personalities and different needs.”
“But if you listen with an open heart … they’ll totally make it clear what all those needs are. And then they’ll change them,” he jokingly continued. “That’s why I feel like the best #parenting advice I ever got was: Connect with them every chance you get. Because it’s all an opportunity for connection.”
The handsome hunk’s heartfelt advice comes months after he and Kimberly announced they sadly suffered a miscarriage. James — who tied the knot with the auburn-haired beauty in 2010 — candidly revealed the heartbreaking news during an episode of Dancing With the Stars in November 2019.
“My wife Kimberly went through every expectant parent’s worst nightmare. We lost the baby,” he announced on the show at the time. “The little soul that we had expected to welcome into our family took a shortcut to whatever lies beyond. You never know why these things happen. That’s what I’ve been telling my kids.”
View this post on Instagram
Still in repair. Discovering that healing happens at its own pace. Not the pace you’d like, and definitely not the pace at which the world keeps on moving… But it happens. And there’s beauty in allowing yourself to be exactly where you’re at. (Plus, it’s not like you really have a choice, anyway 💜)
After reluctantly sharing his news with the world, James praised his wife for being a rock in his life. “Kimberly, from her hospital bed, said to me, ‘I am not done watching you dance.’ Kimberly, I love you,” he gushed. “When words fail, you sing. When there are no words, you dance. Kimberly, I’m dancing for you, I’m dancing for us.”
Weeks following their tragic loss, James gave an update on how they were holding up. “Still in repair,” he penned in mid-December 2019. “Discovering that healing happens at its own pace. Not the pace you’d like, and definitely not the pace at which the world keeps on moving… But it happens. And there’s beauty in allowing yourself to be exactly where you’re at.”
James and his wife have such a beautiful family.