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Jennifer Lopez and Felicity Huffman: Men Don’t Feel ‘Mommy Guilt’ With Their Kids

Jennifer Lopez and Felicity Huffman found a maternal common ground during their conversation for the fourth season of Variety and PBS’ “Actors on Actors” series. The two actresses, who are starring in “Shades of Blue” and “American Crime,” respectively, struggle with juggling motherhood and work — something they say many men don’t experience.

“They asked working moms, they said ‘What percentage of you guys feel guilty about working outside the home?’ And it was 98%. And they said, ‘Even part-time moms, what percentage?’ And it was again like 98%,” Huffman said. “And then they asked working dads, both full-time and part-time. And guess what percentage of working dads feel guilty about their kids?”

“Was it zero?” Lopez asked.

“Goose egg! That’s exactly right; not at all. It’s just so different!” Huffman replied.

“You know when it was over for them,” Lopez added.

The two successful actresses said they simply can’t escape the “mommy guilt.”

“If I get lost in my work for a little while. I feel so guilty when I come out of that haze. Like, ‘Oh god, it’s been seven hours and I haven’t even checked on them. What is wrong with me? What kind of mother are you!?'” Lopez said.

Lopez said one of the keys to maintaining the balancing act is having the right people around her.

“It’s having good people to help you take care of those kids. You know, my kids visit me at the set. They have a room on the set so after school they come right there. I try to shoot this show in the summer so it’s only a couple of months that I’m doing the show when they’re in school. We work it out and have a life and this is their life,” she said.

“It’s about people understanding that when I say ‘no,’ it’s ‘no’ and when I can’t, I can’t. And that’s it,” she said.

The two-part fourth-season premiere of “Variety Studio: Actors on Actors” airs June 12 and June 19 on PBS SoCal. Presented by Shopbop/East Dane, the episodes will also be available to stream on Variety.com.

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