Ben Affleck Said Press Attention Surrounding Jennifer Lopez Relationship ‘Didn’t Help’ Him ‘Live a Normal Stable Life’

Ben Affleck opened up to Larry King in a 2004 interview on the heels of his broken engagement to Jennifer Lopez. He admitted that the intense press attention surrounding the couple’s relationship “didn’t help” him “live a normal stable life.”

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck were first engaged to be married in 2002

Ben Affleck put a ring on it with Jennifer Lopez in 2002. He proposed with a custom-made Harry Winston pink-diamond solitaire ring.

The couple planned their wedding, which was to be held in were scheduled to get married in Santa Barbara on Sept. 14, 2003. However, the couple postponed the nuptials just days before they were set to tie the knot.

They later released a joint statement to the press, citing excessive media attention surrounding the day as the reason for the ceremony delay. Then, the couple decided to split permanently.

Affleck discussed his relationship with Lopez in a 2004 interview with CNN’s Larry King. He revealed that the media attention surrounding their relationship never allowed it to grow as it should have.

“You know, sometimes it’s as simple as one person breaking up with somebody else, and sometimes it’s more complicated. And this was — the latter was the case with this one,” he revealed.

He continued that being under constant media attention “Certainly doesn’t help you live a normal, stable life. And, you know, look, relationships are difficult propositions under any circumstances.”

He concluded, “They involve a balance between two people trying to navigate and negotiate and, you know, love one another. And there are a lot of difficulties in everyday life. Those are magnified when it’s that degree of scrutiny all the time.”

Why did Ben Affleck believe his relationship with Jennifer Lopez wasn’t successful in the early 2000s?

Ben Affleck looked back in 2004 at his relationship with Jennifer Lopez through the lens of hindsight. He maintained that the press pressure was too much for the couple to survive. Although they appeared happy in an interview with Access Hollywood, just months later, their relationship would come to a sudden end.

“Here’s what I think happened. This relationship coincided with the situation in the media where you have, say, a surplus of outlets. You have an excess of magazines and television programs catering to a customer that they think wants entertainment news,” he began.

“And then as you have more people competing for the same piece of pie, they get more strident, and the headlines get splashier, and things get bolder in an effort to get attention. And you know, we just happened to be the couple around while they were this was sort of happening,” Affleck deduced.

Did Jennifer Lopez give Ben Affleck back her engagement ring?

Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez in 2022
Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez in 2022 | Valerie Macon/AFP via Getty Images

After their engagement ended in 2003, Jennifer Lopez gave Ben Affleck back the engagement ring he proposed with. The solitaire 6.10 carat radiant-cut pink Harry Winston diamond was worth a reported $2.5M.

Larry King asked Affleck if he would want the ring back. Affleck responded that he considered the ring a gift and wasn’t thinking about whether or not she should return it.

“It’s not an experience I’ve had before, Larry. I couldn’t tell you. I expect that anything you give somebody, you give them with the idea that it’s a gift. And so I don’t believe in expecting anything back.”

Jennifer Lopez and Ben Affleck rekindled their romance in April 2021 and wed in July 2022.

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