Actor Philip Seymour Hoffman And His Partner Lived Separately To Protect Their Children But She Stood By Him Till His Last Day

November 28, 2019

In 2014, the world said adios to The Talented Mr. Ripley actor Philip Seymour Hoffman, a man who had entertained many through his stellar performances on screen. But outside the limelight, Phil was a troubled man whose substance use had separated him from his loved ones.

When Philip Seymour Hoffman’s death was reported, his fans were shocked that the cause of death had been intoxication from a mixture of substances. According to the medical examiners, his death was ruled an accident.

However, before things went from bad to worse, the trouble had started at home, where Phil and his partner decided that he should move out of the house, to protect their children.

Getty Images / Ideal Image

Philip Seymour Hoffman lived away from his children

Philip Seymour Hoffman was a great actor and whenever he could, he tried to be the best version of himself. But like most of us, he was weak too and for 20 years of his life, he was sober in an attempt to avoid any hurting those close to him.

Speaking to Vogue, his long-time partner, Mimi O’Donnell, shared that when he returned to substance abuse, he tried his best to stop and at one time, even took himself to rehab.

Watching him struggle with addiction was the toughest period of her life since while she loved him with all her heart, she could do nothing for him.

At home, he was behaving differently, and it was making the kids anxious. We both felt that some boundaries would be helpful, and tearfully decided that Phil should move into an apartment around the corner.

While Phil was in his apartment, just a corner from his house, he was able to still be part of the family and even made it to family dinners and walked the kids to school.

Getty Images / Ideal Image

But in time, albeit painfully, Phil returned back to drugs, something that made things worse for Mimi who was at her wit’s end.

I can’t monitor you all the time. I love you, I’m here for you, and I’ll always be here for you. But I can’t save you.

Not long after, Mimi would get the heartbreaking news that her beloved husband had passed away.

Forgiveness helped Mimi O’Donnell heal after Phil’s death

Every widow knows that losing someone close is the worst thing that can ever happen and for Mimi, Phil’s passing was a big blow to her and their children. As one would expect, she was angered by the circumstances of his passing but with time, she learned to forgive him.

Writing for TIME, Mimi said that to truly forgive her husband, she had to let go of her ego.

I had to fully accept that Phil’s death was final. I also had to accept that I was now a single mother of three, something I did not want, but that’s where I was.

According to Mimi, her kids became a crucial part of her journey as she was able to set aside the blame and raise her kids in a way that Phil would definitely approve. After all, life had to move on.

While the healing process never ends, being aware of the facts helped Mimi to become the best mom to her kids, who are a wonderful outcome of their relationship together.

YanLev /

How to help someone suffering from addiction

Dealing with addiction is one of the toughest challenges anyone can ever face and for family members, the pain is even deeper. However, as the closest kin or family member to someone with addition, knowing how to deal with addiction can help them to overcome their weaknesses.

To help someone who is in recovery or is relapsing, these steps can help:

  • Don’t enable: While watching someone struggling is tough, draw the line between supporting and enabling. Let them do their chores, responsibilities, and restrain yourself from gifting them with money.
  • Be compassionate: Be understanding and welcoming of the person suffering since this will encourage them to seek help. Avoid tough love since this creates negative outcomes.

Vasin Lee /

  • Don’t focus on guilt or shame: Someone might be addicted and however much they look comfortable; they are ashamed of their past. Even though you were hurt, don’t focus on the pain, guilt, and shame since this is counterproductive.
  • Encourage healthy habits: People suffering from addiction often suffer from declines in physical health so ensure that they follow helpful habits. If possible, create a nurturing environment.
  • Take care of yourself: Caring for people with addiction is hard and tasking so always ensure that you give yourself time to process your feelings. You can’t take care of someone if you are hurting too.

Addiction is tough but with support from family, it can be overcome. Have you dealt with a family member who was struggling with addiction or recovery? Do you agree with Mimi O'Donnell that forgiveness goes a long way?