Jennifer Aniston Turns 51, Thanks ‘Unsafe’ Household for Happiness

Jennifer Aniston just turned 51, and it seems that before the Friends actress was making us laugh as Rachel Green, she had some tough times off-screen.

In a sit-down with Sandra Bullock for Interview magazine, Aniston revealed that growing up in an “unsafe household” helped to shape her into the positive person that she is.

Aniston was asked by Bullock, 55, “What is it that allows you to stay buoyant and keep from getting discouraged when things don’t go the right way?”

Aniston responded, “I guess I have my parents to thank,” in reference to her father, actor John Aniston, and mother, actress Nany Dow.

She continued:

“It comes from growing up in a household that was destabilized and felt unsafe, watching adults being unkind to each other, and witnessing certain things about human behavior that made me think: ‘I don’t want to do that. I don’t want to be that. I don’t want to experience this feeling I’m having in my body right now. I don’t want anyone else that I ever come in contact with ever to feel that.”

Aniston’s parents split when she was just 9 years old

Aniston has been through her own divorce, and also witnessed the divorce of her parents. In a 2011 interview with James Lipton, the then 42-year-old actress gave a candid account of her childhood. She spoke about the day her father John Aniston left her mother Nancy Dow.

Jennifer shared, “It was pretty crappy, I came home from a birthday party and he was moved out.”

Jennifer also revealed that she used her own emotional response from her divorce with actor Brad Pitt in her film “The Break Up”, which was filmed shortly after the ex pairs’ separation.

Surprisingly, Aniston was not put off by acting in the movie after her divorce and stated, “I enjoyed it. I really enjoyed it. You would think otherwise, because even the producers were like, ‘I don’t know if we should ask you to do this,’ but I was like, ‘why not? Turn the page, let’s move on.'”

Jennifer Aniston at the 4th Annual Patron of the Artists Awards

Kathy Hutchins/Shutterstock

Anniston’s father John Aniston has been a cast member on the soap opera Days of Our Lives for quite some time. Her mother Nancy Dow also starred in some movies and TV shows, including The Ice House, Pure, and Hard Copy. Dow passed away in 2016.

Aniston’s interview was published on her 51st birthday

“I had no idea this would be coming out today,” she stated on Instagram. “Feeling proud and honored to be celebrating with this cover. Thanks to the Interview team for celebrating women at every age… turns out 51 is pretty fun.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/B8cPQLjBdYY/

Aniston received some very sweet birthday posts from friends via Instagram, including her The Morning Show co-star Reese Witherspoon.

Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston appear at a promotional event for "The Morning Show"

JStone/Shutterstock

And of course, she celebrated in the best way that one can — a birthday party! Aniston’s party was held at Sunset Tower Hotel, and stars including Chace Crawford, Elisabeth Moss, Jennifer Meyer, and Aniston’s Friends co-star Courteney Cox all showed up to celebrate the Friends Alum.

On behalf of all the Friends fans everywhere, happy birthday Jennifer Aniston!

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