Debra Messing on Boys, Baths & Being a Mom

debra messing the mysteries of laura

On her new show, The Mysteries of Laura, Debra Messing, 46, plays both an NYPD homicide detective and a single mom to mischievous twin boys (her philandering ex is played by Josh Lucas). Off screen, she's a spokesperson for Zyrtec allergy medication and a single mom to 10-year-old son Roman (Messing split with his dad Daniel Zelman two years ago).

The Stir recently chatted with Messing about how she's managing to juggle it all. Here's what she had to say.


Both on The Mysteries of Laura and in your personal life, you're juggling parenting and work. How do you do it?
One hour at a time. Being a full-time mom is a nearly impossible feat to do gracefully all the time. I try to look at it day-by-day and week-by-week and know that there are times when I'm going it fail.

You had Roman when you were on Will & Grace. How did that change your day-to-day life?
It was the biggest shock of my life. Everything changes in the most beautiful way. You don't sleep and it's going to be harder. You have to go to friends and family for support. As they say, "it takes a village." And do not be afraid to tell people that you're having a hard time and need some help. I think it's important to know that we can't be superwomen because that's an impossible thing to accomplish. Then finding a balance isn't as treacherous.

Was it hard admitting you needed help?
I had this misconception that if I were a good mother, I could do it all on my own, I wouldn't be tired, and I wouldn't go to work. And I think that those are things that go through women's minds. I know that took a toll on me, and finally, I just hit a tipping point and I realized that I can't do it alone. And that's okay! And as soon as I said to myself, "You don't have to do it all, and you don't have to do it all by yourself," everything evened out.

How do you find time for yourself?
For me, I'm a big bath person. That's my big luxury. It's something that's quick, but has a huge relaxing impact and feels like an indulgence. It's my time to myself to be really quiet and reflect. I take a bath every night at the end of the day.

You have a son in real life and twin boys on the show. What's it like being the mother of a boy?
If you're a mother of a son, you have to be prepared for boundless energy. Just when you think they won't get more energetic, they will. I have a love affair with my son. He's the best thing I've ever done in my life and he's funny and sweet. I was scared of having a son because I was like, "What am I going to do with a son?" I'm not athletic. But you learn, as soon as the baby comes, you all of a sudden want to play baseball and you want to play soccer. Mostly, you just want to spend time with your child.

What fun thing have you done with him lately?
We just went to the US Open together. He had never been to a professional tennis match before, and he had been taking tennis lessons, so it was really exciting to see him taking it all in. It was a wonderful day.

Messing's new show The Mysteries of Laura premieres Wednesday, September 24, on NBC at 8 p.m. EST.

Image via Andrew Eccles/NBC

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