“I don’t think I ever really got comfortable with all of it,” Duhamel, 50, said of the fame that came from being with Fergie, 48, during a Wednesday, October 4, clip from his In Depth With Graham Bensinger interview. “I just missed the simplicity of who I really am, you know?”
Looking back, Duhamel noted that he and Fergie didn’t see eye to eye on their forever home. Duhamel was from North Dakota, while the former Black Eyed Peas singer was born and raised in Southern California.
“I made peace with that part of my life. She and I have a great relationship,” he explained. “There wasn’t anything wrong with it. We had a great time. I think we kind of outgrew each other and had very different interests.”
Duhamel remembered wanting to come back to North Dakota as he got older, pointing out that “this is not” the right life for Fergie. “I’ve got no hard feelings for it. I truly don’t,” he continued. “I’m very lucky that she’s a kind human.”
The Shotgun Wedding actor — who shares 10-year-old son Axl with Fergie — noted that despite his aversion to the limelight, he eventually acclimated to Hollywood. However, that didn’t change his desire to move back to his home state one day.
“It just took me a long time to really feel like I belong, like I fit in,” Duhamel said of Los Angeles, sharing that his move to North Dakota has been good for his soul. “Having this place out here, really allows me to get back to that kid that fell in love with nature. Fell in love with the outdoors and being creative and just being active.”
Following his divorce, Duhamel found not only a second love with Mari, 29, but he found balance within his career by moving to the Midwest.
“Having this place out here almost helps my career because I can get back to being who I really am,” he said of his lake house. “If I’m there and I get caught up in that world, you start to lose track of who you are. And I don’t think I’ve ever done that, thankfully.”
Duhamel added: “That’s why Audra’s so great for me. We’re both hardcore North Dakotans. We both love lake life.”
The choice to live a simpler lifestyle has also extended to his coparenting relationship with Fergie. “[We] had to be a positive example for Axl,” the actor shared. “We just both wanted the same thing — and that is to create an easy place for him that isn’t awkward, or uncomfortable or pressure filled.”
Duhamel’s full interview on In Depth With Graham Bensinger airs across the U.S. this weekend.