"They didn’t have the vocabulary. And they were so racked with self-loathing and guilt"
Editor’s note: This article was originally published on December 10, 2021. It has since been updated.
Today, Tom Hanks is one of the biggest names in the Hollywood industry. He is known for being a kind man who has helped several people in need. Through his films, he's made a life for him, one where he and his wife can live comfortably, but his upbringing and his childhood were not always that smooth.
In a 2016 interview, Hanks revealed that he had a lonely childhood, living a rather nomadic life with his chef father, Amos. The duo moved 10 houses in a period of 10 years, he revealed, according to The Guardian.
He added that he never really had a lot of belongings because they moved from home to home. "What it was, it was the vocabulary of loneliness,” he said.
His loneliness also stemmed from a rather traumatic upbringing he had. The Concord, California native was only five years old when Amos, and his mother, Janet, parted ways. The New York Times reveals that he and his older brother and sister went to live with his father, while another brother lived with their mother.
“No one told me how to brush my teeth,” he said. “I never flossed until I was out of high school, because dental hygiene was handled by a filmstrip that we saw in second grade that said, really, try to eat an apple, and that cleans your teeth. So, hey, I had an apple last week, so my teeth are kind of clean.”
His parents weren't there for him when he was growing up, but he doesn't hold a grudge against them for it, because now he knows, “it’s because they didn’t have the verbiage."
"They didn’t have the vocabulary. And they were so racked with self-loathing and guilt and et cetera, all that stuff that went along, and there were four of us, for God’s sake, and they just, you know, couldn’t do it. Now, I’ve got four kids myself, and as soon as you start having your own kids, you go, like, oh, I get it.”
His first marriage also didn't last long. The Cast Away actor reportedly got married to Samantha Lewes in 1978 when he was 21 to "quell the loneliness." The former couple shares two children—Colin and Elizabeth. But getting married early worked for him, in a way. “Having a kid at 21 was the greatest thing that ever happened to me because I didn’t smoke pot. I didn’t do drugs, I was not a party boy.”
But since he got married to get rid of being alone, and not out of love, it didn't last. The two got divorced in 1987, but life really had other plans for him. He met Rita Wilson and, the two got married in 1988. “I don’t think I’ll ever be lonely any more, that’s how I felt when I met my wife.”They have been inseparable ever since!
Tom Hanks may never have experienced joy as a child, but his life changed for the better and he's had happy days since. Here's hoping his future is also filled with nothing but love and laughter.
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Rich Fury