Brian Cox was “far too young” when he married his first wife.
The ‘Succession’ actor was just 24 years old when he tied the knot with Caroline Burt – the mother of his kids Alan 51, and 44-year-old Margaret– because he was looking for stability and “normality” after a troubled childhood which had seen his dad die when he was eight and his mother hospitalised after a breakdown, but he thinks he should have waited until later in life to settle down.
Brian – who writes openly about his infidelity in his new memoir, ‘Putting the Rabbit in the Hat’ – said: “‘I was just in my twenties when I got married to Caroline. Far too young.
“But I wanted the stability of marriage and kids. I wasn’t one of those middle-class actor-types, taking drugs and letting it all hang out.
“After what I’d been through, I craved the normality of a home and a family.
“Caroline and I managed 18 years and we had two children, so it wasn’t so bad.”
However, the 75-year-old star admitted he “struggled” with parenthood because his career kept him away from home for so long.
He added: “Having said that, I always struggled with fatherhood because, well… to be honest, my job meant that I was hardly ever there.”
But Brian hopes he’s a better parent to his younger sons, Orson, 19, and 17-year-old Torin – who he has with second wife Nicole Ansari – because he was “better prepared” for fatherhood in his 50s.
He said: “I remarried in 2002, to Nicole [Ansari, a German-born actor] and became a dad again at 56.
“With our two sons, I’ve tried to make up for all the things that happened before. These days, my career doesn’t always come first. Maybe I was better prepared for it the second time around.”
Nicole is 23 years younger than her husband but Brian doesn’t care about their critics.
He said: “What do they want me to say? Love is love, and Nicole is the love of my life.
“I had a relationship before this one where the age gap was 26 years and it started when she was 18. Although we had a great time together, I knew there were limitations because she still needed to find herself.
“Nicole was in her thirties when we met, and she’d already had a pretty amazing life. She’d been all over the world.”
Tagged in Brian Cox