Ashton Kutcher highlighted some less-than-perfect moments from his life during an acceptance speech this weekend.
The 39-year-old actor was in Iowa on Saturday to receive the Robert D. Ray Pilliar of Character Award for demonstrating “good character as a role model.”
“I’m also probably the first person to get this award for character who had, like, his name splashed across every gossip magazine as an adulterer like five years ago,” he told the audience, referring to his 2013 split from Demi Moore.
“Character comes when those magazines tear you apart for something you may or may not have done and you gotta go out and perform tomorrow — with everyone looking at you like you might be an adulterer,” he added.
He also mentioned being arrested at 18 for “felony burglary for trying to break into his high school” — he was given a deferred judgment — and getting “pulled over by a state trooper while tripping on mushrooms,” — for which he escaped arrest.
He credited his family, including his twin brother, Michael Kutcher, for helping to shape his character.
“My brother was born with cerebral palsy and it taught me that loving people isn’t a choice and that people aren’t actually all created equal,” the actor said, fighting back tears. “The Constitution lies to us. We’re not all created equal. We’re all created incredibly unequal to one another, in our capabilities and what we can do and how we think and what we see. But we all have the equal capacity to love one another, and my brother taught me that.”
It’s his wife, Mila Kunis, who kicks his butt “on character every day,” he said, including that morning.
“I thought I was awesome because I got up early and helped with the kids before she woke up and I let her sleep a little bit and then she’s like, ‘Well, now you’re gonna act tired? I do it every day.’ But it was a character moment, right? Because she’s right!” he said.
He called his young children, 2-year-old daughter Wyatt and 4-month-old son Dimitri, “the greatest lesson in character in my life.”
“When my wife and I had these kids, and we got to share that amazing, amazing, amazing honor, my first response was I wanted to call my parents and say, ‘I’m sorry, because I never knew how much you loved me,'” Kutcher said.