Even as Mel Gibson is embroiled in a nasty legal battle with his former girlfriend Oksana Grigorieva and faces fall-out from a series of rage-filled leaked audiotapes, the embattled actor can count on at least one thing: his family.
“He has a good support system in his friends and family,” a pal tells PEOPLE, adding that his kids are “absolutely” standing by their father.
Gibson regularly speaks to his soon-to-be-ex wife, Robyn, with whom he has seven children from their nearly 30-year marriage. “They are continuing to raise their kids together,” a source says of the former couple, who split in April 2009.
It was Robyn who came to Gibson’s defense, filing an affidavit last Thursday swearing he was never abusive during his ongoing custody battle with Grigorieva, who is accusing the actor of hitting her.
According to the source, “Mel didn’t ask Robyn for the affidavit, where she says that he never engaged in any physical abuse towards her. Robyn just felt that enough is enough and stepped in to show that she still values her marriage to Mel and that she is sick of the media portraying Mel as a heartless and abusive monster.”
“Robyn feels that Mel was and is an amazing dad,” the source says, “and she is still very protective of him.”
A Gibson family source says the actor’s family has long seen Oksana as calculating. She pushed him over the edge,” the source says. “While they do think he needs help for his anger issues, Mel’s family is supportive of him.”