For Yellowstone’s Matthew McConaughey, the success of his children's book, Just Because, highlights the immense joy and fulfillment he finds in fatherhood.
The Dallas Buyers Club star navigates the complex world of parenting alongside his wife, Camila Alves.
They have three children: sons Levi, 15, and Livingston, 10, and their daughter, Vida, 13. Their approach to raising these three unique personalities? A blend of trust, openness, and letting kids be kids.
Speaking with E! News, Matthew shared insights into how the philosophy behind Just Because" was cultivated.
The COVID lockdown provided a unique environment, giving Matthew an opportunity to deepen his bond with his children. This immersion into family life led him to some profound revelations.
"You start to see and make sense of the world through the lens of having children,” he reflected. “And evidently I have some dreams through that lens as well."
But with children transitioning into their teenage years, Matthew and Camila are bracing for some of the more challenging conversations, including the imminent "sex talk".
Matthew admitted: “We’re starting those discussions, and I think they come with the teen years."
He's not alone in feeling a bit lost about it. Conversations with friends revealed a shared uncertainty: "What do you say? Where do you go?" Matthew recounted, emphasizing the need for more safe and candid spaces for these essential conversations.
However, this couple's approach to parenting isn't just about guiding; it's also about granting freedom.
Eschewing the prevalent "helicopter parent" approach, they give their children room to breathe, grow, and even keep some secrets.
Matthew stressed the importance of respecting their children’s private spaces, "Every child needs a journal or a diary that they can trust. 'Mom and Dad aren’t going through that, that’s mine.'"
By nurturing this trust, Matthew and Camila hope it will create an environment where their kids will come to them voluntarily to discuss important matters.
He elaborated, "It's like saying, 'I respect your private world, and that makes me more inclined to share mine with you when I'm ready.'"
Their parenting journey has also been a two-way street in terms of life lessons. While they guide their children, their children, in turn, teach them valuable life lessons. For Matthew, Levi epitomizes the spirit of "consideration."
"He’s an extremely considerate young man, and I appreciate that about him,” he said, a note of pride evident in his voice.
Vida, whom Matthew fondly calls the "peacemaker," exemplifies the grace of "forgiveness," while Livingston, with his unparalleled ability to immerse himself fully in a task, teaches him about unwavering focus. "When he’s got a project... he zeroes in, and the rest of the world is gone.”
In a world teeming with parenting manuals and expert advice, Matthew and Camila's journey underscores the value of intuition, mutual respect, and learning on the go.
Their story offers a refreshing perspective, reminding us that sometimes the best lessons come from simply being present, listening, and, of course, "just living."