Jennifer Lopez's 2 Kids: Everything She's Said About Parenting Emme and Max
Jennifer Lopez welcomed her twins with ex-husband Marc Anthony in February 2008
Jennifer Lopez holds the title of actress, singer, dancer and business mogul, but her most important job is being the mom of her 15-year-old twins, Maximilian "Max" David Muniz and Emme Maribel Muniz.
Lopez welcomed her kids with ex-husband Marc Anthony in February 2008, and it was love at first sight.
“It’s unconditional love,” she told PEOPLE. “I know everybody feels this way about their kids, but I just feel like they’re super special. I can’t wait to see what they do.”
As the years passed, the dynamic duo developed their own personalities, interests and talents. A hands-on mom to the pair, who were homeschooled when they were younger, Lopez enjoyed a front-row seat for all of it.
Related: Jennifer Lopez Says Her Kids 'Love' and 'Appreciate' Stepdad Ben Affleck: 'He's a Wonderful Father'
As the twins got older, The Mother star told PEOPLE, "They're venturing out, they're being their own people and it's us just trying to keep up."
“That's the journey of it [and] another path you have to go own," Lopez added. "It's a joy for me."
Read on to learn all about Jennifer Lopez’s twins, Emme and Max.
Emme and Max were born in February 2008
Lopez and Anthony welcomed their twins on Feb. 22, 2008. “Jennifer and Marc are delighted, thrilled and over the moon,” Lopez’s manager Simon Fields told PEOPLE exclusively after the singer gave birth.
They have a big, blended family
Max and Emme have grown up surrounded by lots of love. They have one older half-sister and three older half-brothers through their dad, and after the Hustlers actress and Ben Affleck got married in July 2022, they gained three new step-siblings — Samuel, Seraphina and Violet.
Before tying the knot, Lopez told Vogue that they were handling the transition of blending their families with “so much care.” "What I hope to cultivate with our family is that his kids have a new ally in me and my kids have a new ally in him,” she added.
To make that transition as easy and fun as possible, the kids enjoyed some outings together, including a group trip to the Magic Castle in Hollywood. "They are not trying to rush anything, but they want all the kids to get to know each other," an insider told PEOPLE of the outing. "They are making the last few days of summer as fun as they can. Soon it's back to school and work."
It didn’t take very long for them to bond. Affleck was all smiles with his kids and Emme at Universal Studios, and Lopez shared her excitement about their family Christmas celebrations in 2022. "We have blended families, doubled the people, doubled the fun, doubled the love, doubled the presents and tripled the chaos!!" she wrote in her On the JLo newsletter.
It helps that Affleck is “a wonderful, wonderful father,” Lopez gushed to Hoda Kotb on Today. “And a father figure to [Max and Emme] as well,” she said. "He's fantastic. He really steps up to the challenge of what that is and what that means … And they love him. They love him. And they appreciate him, and so do I."
Lopez admits it’s "tough" parenting teenagers
Lopez is incredibly proud of her kids, but admits that being a mom to teenagers comes with new challenges. "The teenage years are tough," she said in an interview on Live with Kelly and Mark. "It's challenging. You have this baby for a while and then it's like, your best little friend who loves being with you all the time, and then all of a sudden it's like, 'Get out of my room.' "
“They are challenging everything you say and everything you do and everything you are, and that's what it is,” she added. “You have to kind of just ride the waves."
But with “almost” five teens in the house, the waters have been a little rougher. “It's like, 'Oops, I just got knocked over!' Now, I'm back, I'm back!” Lopez joked.
Emme and Max handle fame "with a lot of grace"
As they’ve gotten older, the twins have come to fully understand the extent of Lopez’s fame. While they love sitting down to watch World of Dance with their mom, and she likes getting to “do [that] together,” Lopez knows there’s also stress that comes with being a famous kid.
"I think it's a lot for them. And they didn't ask for it,” she told PEOPLE at the premiere of her movie The Mother. “But they handled it with a lot of grace. And I try to make it as good as I can for them. But they're lovely. And they're lovely and I try to give them as great a life as I can give them."
She also added that the twins are “proud” of her career.
Lopez homeschooled her kids
Lopez’s top priority is “being there with” her children as they grow up. In order for them to join her on tours, at residencies and on trips for appearances and filming, she turned to homeschooling, when they were younger, and admits not everyone agrees with her decision.
“Everybody’s like, ‘You should have them in school, they need friends,' " she told Fox 5 New York. “It can drive you crazy.”
Regardless of anyone's opinions, Lopez added that her kids were thriving. “They are super happy, well-adjusted, loving, caring kids, and that’s the most important thing,” she said.
Lopez wants them to know the importance of self-love
Lopez loves her kids more than anything, but she wants them to know that “loving yourself is so important,” too.
"Little key things like your thoughts create your life so to think positive, that all their feelings are okay and that people should always treat you well, and you're not a victim to anybody,” she told PEOPLE about the values she’s trying to instill in her kids.
She wants them to love themselves first in hopes that they’ll be able to have “healthy relationships” with not just herself and each other, but with their friends and eventual romantic partners as well.
"I want [the kids] to know where I got to very recently: If you're good on your own, you really can have a beautiful relationship," she added. "But until then, you're probably going to struggle through it and try to find it."
Max inspired his mom to speak out about injustice
Lopez may inspire her kids to express themselves, but she also gleaned inspiration from her son amid the George Floyd protests in 2020.
"He wanted me to make sure I realized that I had power and that I should use it, and I thought that was very insightful," she told Elle in 2021. "It was one of those parenting moments when you're like, 'Oh, maybe I'm raising a conscientious, kind, loving kid here.' "
She attended a protest in Los Angeles alongside her then-fiancé Alex Rodriguez, carrying signs that read "Black Lives Matter" and "Let's Get Loud for Black Lives Matter," which her kids helped her make.
Related: Jennifer Lopez Says Her Twins Are Like 'Little Adults' as They Turn 14: 'They Have Their Own Lives'
"Max told me a few days ago: 'You know mom, since you have a following like some of my YouTuber gamers and they ask us to support things and we do, you should do that for George Floyd,' ” she wrote on Instagram at the time.
"We talked about how if one person doesn't have justice then no one does," continued Lopez in her caption. "That this country was built on the belief of freedom and justice for all. We must take a stand for what we believe in and fight against the injustices in this world. So we continue to peacefully protest until there is change."
Emme is a singer and author like Lopez
Emme is quickly following in Lopez's multi-talented footsteps. When Lopez performed at the Super Bowl halftime show in 2020, Emme stunned fans by taking the stage and belting out Lopez's hit, “Let’s Get Loud.”
Lopez was thrilled to have the support of her mini-me on such a huge stage. "My lil' coconut gave me all the energy I needed to go out there ... " she wrote on her Instagram Story along with some flashback footage from the big show.
As for Emme’s nerves? "I just don’t overthink it," the 15-year-old told PEOPLE. "I get up there and do it."
Lopez has also written several children’s books, and Emme wrote one as well, titled Lord Help Me.
"I really hope children are able to learn to pray, share the book and spread the power of prayer after reading it," Emme explained to PEOPLE, adding that Lopez and Max are “all really proud of me.”
Emme and Max have a special bond
Many twins share a unique type of bond, and Emme and Max are no different. While chatting with PEOPLE about their family dynamics, Emme explained, “Max and I have a special relationship.”
“Since we were very little, I could always understand him when no one else could,” Emme added.
They played a big role in Lopez and Affleck’s wedding
When Lopez and Affleck finally tied the knot nearly 20 years after calling off their engagement in 2004, they made sure the event was a union of their families as well as themselves.
Related: Jennifer Lopez Celebrates Twins Max and Emme's 15th Birthday with a Video That Includes Ben Affleck
To do that, they enlisted the help of their kids during their nuptials. In her newsletter, she revealed that Marc Cohn made a surprise appearance at their wedding, playing the song “The Things We’ve Handed Down” as she walked down the aisle. Lopez described the track as “a song about the wonderful mystery of children," adding that it was "the perfect choice as our five children preceded me on the walk."
“We weren't only marrying one another; we were marrying these children into a new family,” she added. “They were the only people we asked to stand up for us in our wedding party. To our great honor and joy, each one did.”
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