Angela Kinsey Starts a New Chapter

As she prepares to clean out her desk at “The Office,” the actress talks about her plans and how she and her ex-husband work together to nurture their daughter

by Ilyssa Panitz • Celebrity Reporter
angela kinsey image
Photograph: Jeff Bottari/AP Images for Clorox

AK: I have had paint everywhere! I don’t even understand how it gets on Isabel from head to toe. When that happens, she is not allowed to touch anything. I won’t tell you how I have had purple footprints in my home. But I do have a four-year-old, and things are bound to get messy—like the walls she painted green because green is Mommy’s favorite color. You just have to laugh.

More: Speaking of family, you went through a divorce [Kinsey was married to Warren Lieberstein from 2000 to 2009]. How are you handling your current situation?
AK: We are doing great. Warren is a great parenting partner. We have a terrific open dialogue, and we do a lot of family activities together. Look, my situation may not work for everyone, but for me, maintaining a friendship was so important. At the end of the day, it is all about our kid, and if we can come back to that, then we are standing on common ground. We both agree this child is the light and love of our lives. If you try to see everything through her filter, then you can get along. I will never speak negatively about her father. I want my daughter to grow up loving and respecting her father. It is my duty to treat him with respect and see him through her eyes.

More: Is it all smooth sailing?
AK: Even if we are going through a rough patch, I have to ask, How does my daughter see the situation? It is also important to have boundaries that work, to standup for myself when I have to and talk about what’s working and what’s not working. We have those conversations, so our family functions well. We may not be your traditional family, but we are her family. We also do something together almost every Saturday, like going for lunch or on a trip to the farmers’ market. What’s important to me is that I know she is secure and happy.

More: Are things amicable?
AK: We have an open-door policy between our homes. My ex-husband sees her every day that I have her, and I get to see her every day he has her. We have joint custody, and because of that, we help each other out. Our working arrangement is, I have evenings and he has mornings. That translates into him helping me out in the morning and me helping him out in the evening. We decided early on we were making a commitment to make this work. I am sure things will change as our lives evolve, but for now it’s working.

More: They say divorce is incredibly painful. You had to do something so private in the public eye.
AK: It hasn’t been easy, but I have such strong family support. I have my parents and my sisters behind me. Look, no one enters into anything thinking they are going to fail. I never wanted to fail at my marriage, and it is so incredibly painful and hard when you do.

More: What strikes me is that you seem at peace with your situation.
AK: My situation has given me such compassion for people that I never had before. I think I used to judge people who got divorced, because my line of thinking was, That will never happen to me; we’ll never grow apart. When I see people now, I approach them from a loving place and just think, Maybe they are doing the best they can. I have grown a lot from this whole experience, by learning how personal, raw and vulnerable it can be.
Click here to read New Cop on the Block: Donnie Wahlberg.

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