Mark Wahlberg is currently starring in Joe Bell, where he plays a grieving father who raises awareness about bullying after his gay son commits suicide. Because of the themes of the film, Wahlberg is opening up about being a father more than ever. Wahlberg shares four children -- Ella, 17, Michael, 15, Brendan, 12, and Grace, 11 -- with his wife Rhea Durham, and he shared a rare photo of his kids on Instagram. Wahlberg posted a photo of himself in a pool with his three youngest with the caption "They never got me under!"
During an interview with Entertainment Tonight to discuss his new film Joe Bell, Wahlberg confessed that while being famous has its perks, it also has its cons. One of them is the fact that his kids requested that he watch their sports games from the car instead of cheering from the sidelines.
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"Me being in the public eye, there are pros to that, but there's a lot of cons," he explained. "My kids wanna have their own identity, you know? I'm not allowed to get out of the car at football practice or a game. I gotta sit in the car and watch." When his kids made the request that he stay in the car during their games and practices, he admits that at first he was crushed and took it "personally" but realized that in order to support them and their needs, that's a sacrifice he would have to make.
"At first I took it personally because I wanna be there to support them, but supporting them is by making them feel comfortable in what they're doing and them having their own identity too," he added, before saying, "It's very difficult." While he's a father in real life, he's also playing a father in his new role in Joe Bell. The film is based on a true story about a father who walked on foot across the United States to raise awareness about his son, Jadin Bell (Reid Miller), who was bullied for being gay.
"There's nothing more heartbreaking than somebody who's being bullied or picked on, or not accepted for who they are," he said. "And that's gotta start in the home, I think. Making sure that you are talking to your kids, communicating with them, and first and foremost they understand that you love them unconditionally. you cheer for them and support them for being who they are but they have to be able to communicate."