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Busy Philipps almost got divorced — and then her husband stepped up

Sharing parenting responsibilities made their marriage more equitable.
/ Source: TODAY

Busy Philipps came thisclose to divorcing her screenwriter husband Marc Silverstein — but dropped the idea after Silverstein began taking on his share of the parenting.

The "Cougar Town" alum, 40, and her hubby, 48, opened up to Harper's Bazaar about how their 12-year marriage was saved when Silverstein realized he didn't contribute enough to the care of their daughters, Birdie, 11, and Cricket, 6.

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Busy Phillips and husband Marc Silverstein in May 2019. The couple saved their 12-year marriage when Silverstein began helping more with the care of their two daughters.Kevin Winter / Getty Images

Exhausted by raising Birdie and Cricket alone, Philipps told Silverstein she wanted out of the marriage. The news hit him hard.

"Marc was like, 'I'll do anything.' And I was like, 'OK, then do everything. Because I have done it all, all by myself, and I’m done, dude,' the actress recalled.

The couple began a conversation about how they could more fairly divide childcare duties.

"And he made the call: He should be the one to stay home with the kids," the actress remembered. Silverstein quickly took over the morning and bedtime routines for Birdie, and also began preparing meals throughout the week.

“I was fully out the door,” Philipps admitted. “I wasn’t expecting anything from him, but what we ended up doing was creating our own system.”

Sharing parenting responsibilities more equitably not only saved their marriage, it also made Silverstein happier.

"He now loves his mornings with the girls,” Philipps said. “He’ll make my Bulletproof coffee and bring it into the bedroom while I’m still sleeping, and then leave to take the kids to school. He has conversations with them that I’m jealous of. The closeness he now has with these girls, it’s really special."

For his part, Silverstein says he used to leave the parenting solely to Philipps because he lacked confidence.

“I like being good at stuff,” he shared. “And I didn’t feel like I was good (in the home), so I stayed away.”

Once he was faced with the prospect of his family breaking up, he began seeing things differently.

"I realized that deep happiness comes from my family,” he said. “And once I figured out what I could bring to the table, things changed. I wanted to do more.”