Mindy Kaling always wanted to be a mom, but one event in her life pushed her to take having children more seriously.
On the Tuesday, September 19, episode of the iHeartPodcast podcast “Table for Two with Bruce Bozzi,” Kaling, 44, said that her mother’s death in 2012 impacted her in more ways than one.
“I feel blessed because equal to my desire to find a man, I wanted to have children,” Kaling said. “And that intensified when my mother died. I didn’t want to be on my deathbed … and not have anybody around my bed. I want there to be kids and I want there to be grandkids.”
The star also opened up about the relationship she envisioned having with her children as they get older.
“The thing that was the most important thing to me was this relationship to these phantom children that I didn’t have,” Kaling continued. “I pictured I would live in New York City and they would come visit me and we’d walk to see plays together and we would have lunch at the Polo Lounge for dinner. They would hang out with me in my 60s and 70s.”
Kaling had her first child, daughter Katherine, in 2017 and welcomed her son, Spencer, in 2020. She has not publicly confirmed the identity of her daughter or son’s father.
While she decided to have children as a single mom, the actress admits that she was “always obsessed with romantic love.”
“I was never someone that boys wanted to date or do anything, so it sort of made the passion and interest more intense,” she told Bozzi. “And there is also a desperation to it that makes you incredibly unhappy. In my 20s, [I wanted] to find someone, anyone, to settle down with.”
As she entered her 30s, Kaling says she grew tired of the dating scene in Los Angeles and was itching for a change.
“I started to really despise going to parties [in LA]. I started to really like the vibe of going to friends’ houses when they have kids,” she said. “On one level I wanted to have children, on another level I wanted my social life to change. I wanted it to look different … I didn’t need to be going to some house in the Hills in, like, Outpost or the Bird [streets], where there is no parking and you walk into a party that is just a bunch of dudes my age who are interested in women [younger].”
For now, Kaling — who has repeatedly denied that she and ex B.J. Novak are anything more than friends — continues to keep her romantic life out of the spotlight and focus on her upcoming projects. While the writer’s strike has put a pause on the new Legally Blonde movie she’s writing with Reese Witherspoon, she says her goal is “writing something that is incredibly funny and is a great role for Reese, but is saying something about feminism now.”