Brad Pitt Was ‘Absolutely Tired’ Of Himself: How Brad Changed His Life Without Angelina Jolie [Opinion]


Brad Pitt was caught unprepared, to say the least, when an anonymous caller dropped a dime on him for his drinking and parenting. While the FBI and child protective services found no issue after a two-month investigation, Angelina Jolie took her cue to depart from Pitt’s life. The situation with child services could have made it necessary in order to retain custody during those months.

Brad Pitt confided to GQ that he believed he was safe from scandal before this happened. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie had such a perfect life, or so he thought about 18 months ago when he read about some other celebrity’s scandal.

“Something crossed my path that was a big scandal—and I went, ‘Thank God I’m never going to have to be a part of one of those again.’ I live my life, I have my family, I do my thing, I don’t do anything illegal, I don’t cross anyone’s path.”

Brad Pitt was certainly wrong about that. One little phone call, whether motivated by malice or concern, and Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s whole world came crashing down. Despite their money and prestige, the state of California and even the FBI investigated Brad’s parenting to the extreme.

Angelina Jolie chose to remove herself and the children from the situation. Brad Pitt explains to GQ he was powerless to do anything about it.

“I was really on my back and chained to a system when Child Services was called. And you know, after that, we’ve been able to work together to sort this out. We’re both doing our best.”

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie have reportedly decided not to rip each other apart in the divorce, but the fact remains that their family has been “ripped apart” by the investigation, and the children reportedly suffered according to Pitt. Brad describes the impact on his and Angelina Jolie’s children as “very jarring.”

Angelina Jolie made a dramatic, but perhaps necessary, departure. Jolie distanced herself from Brad Pitt. Angelina Jolie took the children from the airport in separate cars. Angelina Jolie reportedly left the airport with the children after being questioned separately according to Hollywood Life.

They let Angelina Jolie keep the kids, but Brad Pitt had to be denied until after the investigation. Angelina Jolie filed for divorce, perhaps with no other choice according to the Inquisitr.

Maybe, Angelina Jolie wanted away from Brad Pitt anyway, but she probably initially left Pitt to ensure the children would not go to foster care, even temporarily. Considering Pitt was under investigation, perhaps it was the only card left for Angelina Jolie to play.

Brad Pitt was alone and abandoned. Brad fell into self-recrimination according to his interview with GQ, accusing himself of “hubris.” Hubris is defined as “excessive pride” or “self-confidence” according to Merriam-Webster. Brad Pitt contends that his pride was “always” his downfall. But he is trying to “get better.”

Without Angelina Jolie and the couple’s six children, Brad Pitt was miserable, but it was misery with a purpose. Brad Told GQ he tried to understand his situation.

“Sitting with those horrible feelings, and needing to understand them, and putting them into place. In the end, you find: I am those things I don’t like. That is a part of me. I can’t deny that. I have to accept that. And in fact, I have to embrace that. I need to face that and take care of that. Because by denying it, I deny myself. I am those mistakes.”

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie Image by Kevin Winter/Getty Images]

Brad Pitt dove into his pain and faced it without alcohol or drugs. He examined where things went wrong, and why exactly Angelina Jolie is no longer with him and why he can’t see his kids. But he didn’t talk about Angelina Jolie or the children. He talked about the culprit from his point of view, and that is none other than Brad Pitt. His own drinking, and reaction to things.

Brad Pitt isn’t talking about Angelina Jolie because logically there is nothing he can do about Angelina Jolie’s absence. Brad recognizes that he can only change himself. Brad wants to change, and he isn’t doing that for a reaction from Angelina Jolie — at least he can’t afford to think that way.

Brad Pitt is in pain and he can’t afford to blame others: Angelina Jolie, the children, or his upbringing. That isn’t productive. He’s in therapy and it is apparently working. Pitt says he “loves” his therapy.

Brad Pitt, of course, misses Angelina Jolie and his children, but Pitt told GQ he wasn’t going to just avoid the pain.

“The avoidance of pain is a real mistake. It’s the real missing out on life. It’s those very things that shape us, those very things that offer growth, that make the world a better place, oddly enough, ironically. That make us better.”

Brad Pitt told GQ he was introspective and is owning his shortcomings.

“For me, this period has been about looking at my weaknesses and failures and owning my side of the street.”

Brad Pitt reached a point of at least relative self-loathing, but with one huge difference. Brad believes he can make a change, and he makes it clear this change isn’t for Angelina Jolie. It isn’t even for the children. Pitt is changing because he has chosen to change, and recognizes his own need for a change.

Brad Pitt quit all his other vices, pot for example, before he became involved with Angelina Jolie, because of the children. Pitt changed, and he can change more.

Brad Pitt And Angelina Jolie happy together years ago at World War Z premiere
Brad Pitt And Angelina Jolie [Image by Ken Ishii/Getty Images]

Brad Pitt has been listening to a lot of Frank Ocean music and Marvin Gaye’s Here, My Dear. Pitt is not drinking at all, as he misses Angelina Jolie and faces the music — his failures, problems, and shortcomings — head on. Brad Pitt says he has been stone cold sober for the last six months.

Brad Pitt expressed the conclusion of his six months of his sober meditations to GQ without naming Angelina Jolie once.

“I do remember a few spots along the road where I’ve become absolutely tired of myself. And this is a big one. These moments have always been a huge generator for change. And I’m quite grateful for it. But for me, personally, I can’t remember a day since I got out of college when I wasn’t boozing or had a spliff or something. Something.”

When asked the question, “You’ve played characters in pain. What is pain, emotional and physical?” Pitt responded with a strange, almost unimaginable story. It is a mystery of a different culture that he may have seen in Angelina Jolie’s company, but again he made no reference to Angelina Jolie. This journey is Brad Pitt’s alone.

“Yeah, I’m kind of done playing those[kinds of roles.] I think it was more pain tourism. It was still an avoidance in some way. I’ve never heard anyone laugh bigger than an African mother who’s lost nine family members. What is that? I just got R&B for the first time. R&B comes from great pain, but it’s a celebration. To me, it’s embracing what’s left. It’s that African woman being able to laugh much more boisterously than I’ve ever been able to.”

Brad Pitt has embraced what’s left, but for Pitt, that isn’t alcohol. Though Brad confesses he was always a heavy drinker, he has completely abandoned the bottle. Not even a sip of wine has passed his lips since that awful evening when he lost Angelina Jolie and his children.

“I’m running from feelings. I’m really, really happy to be done with all of that. I mean I stopped everything except boozing when I started my family. But even this last year, you know—things I wasn’t dealing with… And I’m really happy it’s been half a year now, which is bittersweet, but I’ve got my feelings in my fingertips again. I think that’s part of the human challenge: You either deny them all of your life or you answer them and evolve.”

Brad Pitt is renovating himself after Angelina Jolie’s departure. Pitt describes himself as if he were a house in structural distress.

“Yeah, you start by removing all the decor and decorations, I think. You get down to the structure. Wow, we are in some big metaphor here now.… [laughs] You strip down to the foundation and break out the mortar. I don’t know.”

Brad Pitt has been torn down to the foundation. Losing his family life with Angelina Jolie and the children has taken its toll. He knows what’s missing from himself. It is the people who are important now, not the work, not the denial of his own discomforts. Brad told GQ about his own emotional disconnects as a strong man, following the example of his own strong and quiet father.

Brad Pitt has never been forthcoming about his inner struggles, even with his family. Now he’s ready to stop covering up his feelings according to GQ. Brad Pitt now believes his and Angelina Jolie’s children deserve a more realistic representation of their father’s inner self.

“I gotta be more. I gotta be more for them. I have to show them. And I haven’t been great at it.”

Brad Pitt reportedly has very little joy in his life now. Pitt is alone and somber without Angelina Jolie and the children. A home once full of life, happiness, and the laughter of children is now his baneful sorrow. Brad now avoids the home he once shared with Angelina Jolie and their six children.

Brad Pitt slept on the floor at a friend’s house, then retreated to a sculptor’s studio, rather than be home alone without Angelina Jolie and his children. Brad says he lights a fire because it emulates a sign of life in some way.


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Angelina Jolie and the children are far away now, always traveling, and it is hard to arrange visits. The situation has gotten a little better but it is far from the same. Parenting is difficult but it doesn’t get much harder than losing one’s children.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie’s separation, perhaps largely due to a phone call, is difficult on six months sober Brad and “jarring” for their children.

[Featured Image by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images]