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Allison Janney is one of the most versatile actors in Hollywood. With over 30 years of acting experience, there’s almost no role Janney can’t nail down. The 62-year-old has earned acclaim over the years, and her role in Mom proves she’s worth her weight in gold. Although Janney has the role down pat, the actor isn’t a mom in real life for a simple reason.

Allison Janney got her start in soap operas

Allison Janney attends the 26th Annual Screen Actors Guild Award
Mom star Allison Janney | Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images for Turner

Janney began acting in the ’90s when she appeared in two episodes of the short-lived faux comedy Morton & Hayes. She then had a short-term role in As The World Turns and appeared on Law & Order.

In 1999, she landed her breakthrough role in Aaron Sorkin’s The West Wing. The Boston native played the White House Press Secretary C.J. Cregg, gaining critical recognition cementing her name in Hollywood. She also won several awards, including four Primetime Emmys, four Screen Actors Guild Awards, and a Satellite Award. Her performance on The West Wing also earned her a Golden Globe nod.

After the show went off the air, Janney held guest roles in popular shows like Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, Frasier, and Shameless. She also starred in Lost and Mr. Sunshine. Janney took a sabbatical from TV and returned with CBS’s Mom, which ran from 2013 until its cancellation in 2021 after eight successful seasons.

Janney starred as the titular mom, a cynical, selfish, recovering addict who tries her best to regain the affection and trust of her daughter, brilliantly played by Anna Faris. The role earned Janney critical acclaim and several nominations and awards.

Janney got six Primetime Emmy nods and won two of the awards and the same number of Critics’ Choice Television Awards nominations and wins. Janney has also appeared in Masters of Sex, The Kolinsky Method, and lent her voice to Disney Channel’s Phineas and Ferb.

Allison Janney didn’t have kids because the timing wasn’t right

Although Janney appears to have the mom thing down to a tee, she isn’t a mother in real life, and she’s OK with that. The 62-year-old star appeared on The Drew Barrymore Show in 2021 and shared that she was never sure if she wanted a family.

She told Barrymore, as Today reports, “I think if I’d found the right guy at the right time and wanted to have kids, I probably would have with the right partner. Because I wasn’t ever really confident that I wanted to have kids and I would rather regret not having kids than have kids and regret it.”

Janney, who has also never married, revealed she was OK with her decision. She also told Barrymore that she enjoys being single and getting to know herself. She said, “I really am at this time in my life getting to know who I am and what I want.”

Janney also revealed that while she has no love interest at the moment, she enjoys looking at her “virtual crushes,” naming Yellowstone’s Rip as her latest passion.

Allison Janney’s love life explained


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Although Janney has never walked down the aisle, she has been linked to several people in the past. In 1994 she and Dennis Gagomiros began dating and even had an interest in tying the knot. However, they parted ways in 2001 after nearly a decade together. 

In 2002, Janney and her Our Very Own co-star Richard Jenik started dating and got engaged in 2004, but it was never meant to be as they broke up in 2006. In 2012, Janney and Philip Joncas, the production manager on The Way, Way Back, began dating but ended their relationship in 2017.