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The COVID-19 pandemic has created its fair share of difficult farewells — but in the case of Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor, it proved a moment of reconciliation.

The couple, who were married for 17 years, separated in 2017. But in a recent interview with Esquire, Stiller confirmed the couple have since got back together.

He explains that their reconciliation stemmed from their mutual decision to have him move back into the family home — the couple had been living apart — in the early days of the pandemic and subsequent lockdown. Taylor and Stiller agreed that it was the best way for him be able to see their children, Ella and Quinn.

"Then, over the course of time, it evolved," he said. "We were separated and got back together and we're happy about that. It's been really wonderful for all of us. Unexpected, and one of the things that came out of the pandemic."

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor
Credit: Bruce Glikas/WireImage

Stiller likens their ability to work things out to his own realizations about horseback riding in an eccentric analogy. "A few years ago, I realized I don't like horseback riding," he said. "If there's an opportunity to go horseback riding, I'm probably not going to do it. Now, I like horses! I think they're beautiful. I like petting them. I like watching people ride horses, I like watching my kids ride horses. I just don't really love riding horses. And once you know that, it just saves a lot of energy."

"So, yeah, I think we have a respect for the ways that we're similar and the ways we're different," he continued. "And I think accepting that, you can really appreciate someone more because you're not trying to get them to change for you. Once you accept that, you save a lot of energy. 'This is something that works for me; this is something that doesn't work for me.' If you have that trust level with your partner, you know that me saying 'I don't like doing that thing' is not me saying 'I don't like you.' "

The couple married in 2000, after meeting on a never-aired Fox pilot, Heat Vision and Jack. They've worked together a lot onscreen, including in Dodgeball, Zoolander, Tropic Thunder, Zoolander 2, Arrested Development, and Curb Your Enthusiasm.

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