Gwyneth Paltrow Reveals The Parenting Milestone That Is Giving Her a “Nervous Breakdown”

“It’s sort of putting things into turmoil.”

Gwyneth Paltrow attends the Saint Laurent x Vanity Fair x NBCUniversal dinner and party to celebrate “Oppenheimer” at a private residence on March 08, 2024 in Los Angeles, California.
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Actress and mom Gwyneth Paltrow is getting real about the more stressful aspects of parenthood.

While speaking at the entrepreneur's "Ask Me Anything" session during her 11th In Goop Health Summit hosted at the Park Hyatt Aviara Resort Golf Club & Spa in Carlsbad, California, the mom of two revealed the big parenting milestone that is seriously messing with her head: Becoming an "empty nester" when her 18-year-old son, Moses, heads off to college at Brown University this upcoming fall.

"It’s kind of giving me a nervous breakdown, if I’m honest," Paltrow admitted, according to The Hollywood Reporter. "I started being like: ‘Oh my God, and I need to quit my job and I need to sell my house and I need to move.’ It’s sort of putting things into turmoil."

The Iron Man actress went on to say that her "identity has been being a mother," adding that her oldest, Apple, is about to turn 20 in May.

A post shared by Gwyneth Paltrow

A photo posted by gwynethpaltrow on

"I’ve oriented my whole life around them and their schedules and when school starts," she continued. "You start to let go in increments when they’re driving themselves around or doing certain things. It is a slower process. I feel really lucky because I have a close group of mom friends and we all raised our kids alongside one another. So we’re kind of in it together."

Paltrow shares two children—Apple and Moses—with her ex-husband and Coldplay frontman Chris Martin. The pair were married for 13 years before they announced their "conscious uncoupling" in 2014 and became officially divorced in 2016, People reported at the time.

"In a way, my relationship with Chris is better (now). So, I do think that it can be done," Paltrow said in an interview with television host Drew Barrymore in 2020. "I really wanted my kids to not be traumatized if it were possible. Chris and I committed to putting them first, and that's harder than it looks."

A post shared by Gwyneth Paltrow

A photo posted by gwynethpaltrow on

During the same recent Q&A, Paltrow was also candid about her mental health and how often she goes to therapy—not just for her sake but for benefit of her relationship.

"I speak with my therapist once a week and then I also have an executive coach I work with," she explained. "When my husband and I need it, we jump in and do couples therapy, which I think is super helpful if you want to be in a good long-term situation."

She went on to admit that her and her husband, Brad Falchuk, don't go to couples therapy "that often," in part because she says they "only really ever fight about" the kids.

"We’re here in this body and mind one time; let’s get as close to ourselves as possible and maximize that relationship," she continued. "The only way to do that is through the hard truth with yourself and vulnerability with someone else, and therapy is a good place to start.”

Danielle Campoamor
Weekend Editor

Danielle Campoamor is Marie Claire's weekend editor covering all things news, celebrity, politics, culture, live events, and more. In addition, she is an award-winning freelance writer and former NBC journalist with over a decade of digital media experience covering mental health, reproductive justice, abortion access, maternal mortality and mental health, gun violence, climate change, politics, celebrity news, culture, online trends, wellness, gender-based violence and other feminist issues. You can find both her work in The New York Times, Washington Post, New York Magazine, CNN, MSNBC, NBC, TODAY, Vogue, Vanity Fair, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, InStyle, Playboy, Teen Vogue, Glamour, The Daily Beast, Mother Jones, Prism, Newsweek and more. She currently lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband and their two feral sons. When she is not writing, editing or doom scrolling she enjoys reading, cooking, debating current events and politics, traveling to Seattle to see her dear friends and losing Pokémon battles against her ruthless offspring. You can find her on X, Instagram, Threads, Facebook and all the places.