Christina Ricci Opens Up: Ex-Husband’s Lack of Support During Son’s Baby Years


Christina Ricci has opened up on the difficulties of balancing a career with raising her children.

She shares her son Freddie, 9, with James Heerdegen. They were married between 2013 and 2020. She also shares her daughter Cleopatra with her husband Mark Hampton.

During a Monday appearance on “Let’s Be Clear With Shannen Doherty”, the “Yellowjackets,” star explained why Freddie wasn’t “sleep trained” as a child.

“I had no choice but to return to work after he turned two months. Ricci said Heerdegen at the time, was not helpful at all.

She said, “I was on camera for 14 hours. I had to get up at night and do all of the night stuff.”

Ricci continued, “The only way I could get enough sleep was to sleep with him. He would nurse whatever he desired and sleep with us. I needed him to sleep in my bed just so I could go to work the following day.”

“Now that again, it set me up for him not to be sleep-trained which isn’t good. It was tough because I did it all by myself. But I believe we will get through. Just keep going.”

I repeat it to myself constantly: “It’s only temporary.” It’s temporary.'”

After seven and a half years, Ricci and Heerdegen divorced in acrimony. A judge granted Ricci restraining orders against Heerdegen in January 2021 after she claimed that he was abusive. He denied all allegations of abuse at the time.

They settled their divorce after a bitter custody fight in December 2022. The star of “Addams Family Values”, was given primary custody over Freddie.

After the divorce, Ricci and Hampton began dating and announced their pregnancy in September 2021. The couple married two months later and welcomed Cleopatra into the world in December 2021.

Ricci said that it was “much simpler” for her to return to work after Cleopatra’s birth.

Ricci stated, “Now, I have a wonderful spouse who does more than — again because I returned to work when her daughter was only two months old.” She said, “I shot Wednesday in Romania when she had just turned two months. Mark worked every night for the entire duration of that shoot.”

Ricci added, “It was like I slept the night before and went to work the next morning. It made a big difference.” It was much easier the second time. You have to be a supportive partner.

The Emmy Award winner admitted, however, that at times her busy work schedule hurt her relationship with children.

Ricci told Cleopatra that she didn’t even know her last year. “We had no bond.” “That was very upsetting.”

She added, “My children do not like when I travel.” “When I travel, I take my son as much as possible.”


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Ricci did note that traveling as a four-person family can be “expensive.”

She said, “If you are a regular on a show, you will have to pay for everything. So, every time I travel, I cannot pay for four passengers, four flights, and rooms.

Ricci replied, “It is difficult.” “I manage it. I just try to get back as much as possible. The thing I learned, particularly with my son was to mix him into my professional life. Why can’t you bring him to a convention for a weekend and let him experience it?”

She added, “I’ve been able sort of to mix him into my working life in a good way.”