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Hugh Jackman Opens Up About Devastating Day His Mother 'Abandoned' Him At Age 8

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Oct. 24 2012, Published 10:00 a.m. ET

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By Staff

Hugh Jackman has opened up about the devastating day his mother walked out on the family and never came back.

The Wolverine star shared the heart-wrenching details of the day his English-born mom left him and his four siblings without saying goodbye, to return to her homeland for good.

Aussie Jackman was just eight when his mom Grace, who had suffered post-natal depression, upped and left him, his two brothers, two sisters and his dad.

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She broke the tragic news to them by telegraph the following day and Jackman said that it took him until he was about 13 years old to fully accept that she wasn’t coming back.

However Jackman, told Australia’s Women’s Weekly magazine that he is now reconciled with his mother but that as a child he was terrified that people treated him differently because his mom had walked.

The hunky 44-year-old Real Steel star told the magazine: "At the time it was difficult. One of the main things I remember is that horrible feeling that people were talking about you and looking at you because it was odd for the mother to leave.

"For many years, I thought it was not going to be forever, so I clung on to that. Up until that age of about 12 or 13, I thought Mum and Dad would get back together.

“Finally realizing it wasn't going to happen was probably the roughest time to be honest."

After Jackman's parents divorced, his sisters, Zoe and Sonia, went to live with his mother in England while he and his brothers stayed in Sydney with their father, Chris.

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But although his mom's leaving scarred him, Jackman, a father himself now, says he never felt she stopped loving him.

He said: "But the thing I never felt, and I know this might sound strange, I never felt that my mum didn't love me.

“I've spoken about it at length with her since and I know she was struggling. She was in hospital after I was born, suffering from post-natal depression.

"And then you add five kids into the mix and the fact she had emigrated from England and there wasn't a support network for her here, plus the fact that Dad was at work all day - and you realize that as parents we make mistakes."

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In recent years, Jackman and his mother have reunited and he has forgiven her. He has two children of his own with his wife, Australian actress Deborra-Lee Furness, and says that becoming a father helped him understand the pressures his mother was under.

"There comes a certain point in life when you have to stop blaming other people for how you feel or the misfortunes in your life. You can't go through life obsessing about what might have been," Jackman said.



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