As a child-free woman in Hollywood, Jennifer Aniston is no stranger to tireless media speculation as to why she has not had a child. The star has remained dignified, rarely addressing the topic, but in a recent interview she has hit back at critics, sayings it's "insulting and ignorant" to analyse her child free status.
"I don't like [the pressure] that people put on me, on women—that you've failed yourself as a female because you haven't procreated. I don't think it's fair," she said in an interview with American Allure magazine. "You may not have a child come out of your vagina, but that doesn't mean you aren't mothering—dogs, friends, friends' children."
"This continually is said about me: that I was so career-driven and focused on myself; that I don't want to be a mother, and how selfish that is," she continued.
"I have a lot of friends who decided not to have children, who can't have children, or are trying but are having a difficult time. There's all sorts of reasons why children aren't in people's lives, and no one has the right to assume. It's quite rude, insulting and ignorant."
The actress, 45, says after years of hearing such comments she can't ignore them: "No. Even saying it gets me a little tight in my throat."
The actress spoke of how she's also tired of the close attention paid to the physical appearance of actresses in the film industry.
During filming of her upcoming film Cake, Aniston stopped wearing make-up, shaving and wore a large prosthetic scar on her face. "A woman going physically unattractive is where you get recognition and some sort of respect. You read things like, 'Oh, finally, she's acting!'"
"[It's] quite sexist, to be honest, because men don't get that," she added.
Speaking on why the word feminism has become so complicated, Aniston replied: "Because people overcomplicate it. It's simply believing in equality between men and women. Pretty basic."
She says fiancé and actor Justin Theroux, 43, whom she's been engaged to since in 2012, is protective of her. "We're equals. He's a nurturer. He is so fiercely loyal. Beyond protective. I mean, the way he takes care of our dogs, he takes care of me, he takes care of friends."
While Aniston remained quiet about their wedding plans, she added: "We do talk about it all the time."