Robert Downey Jr. Opens Up About His Son Exton: “It Seems Like He’s Always Been Here”

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Robert Downey Jr. shares his thoughts on fatherhood the second time around.

Turning 47 this month, the “Iron Man” actor is dad to sons Indio, 18, and newborn Exton Elias. He shared with the new issue of Esquire that despite being filled with fear over becoming a dad again, once Exton arrived everything felt right.

“There was all this trepidation, all this projection, all this anticipation and goodwill and a good vibe about it. But what you’re squeezing to the side — or what’s in the glove box — is these thousands of forms of fear. And then he was born and they’ve all just kind of scattered now. It seems like he’s always been here.”

“Am I going to know what to do with them? Does any new parent, even if you’re not a first-time parent, ever really know what to do? Only thing you have to do, the only requirement, if you can hack it, is to not transfer your own discomfort in the moment to this fresh soul, right? You got to be mindful.”

Robert says that even though he plays a “superhero” of sorts in the “Iron Man” films and in the upcoming “Avengers” flick, he’s not a hero, just a human.

“Every dad casts a shadow, you know? And that shadow is you’re disappointed, you’re resentful, or you feel so supported and loved you don’t understand why life is so hard anyway. Or, you know, it’s so long and so dark that you can never step out of it, so you might as well not even try. Right? So hero to me is not applicable to the human experience. I think that we all do heroic things, but hero is not a noun, it’s a verb.”

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Photos by WENN