Tina Fey Feels Gwyneth Paltrow's Pain

Being a working mom and comedian isn't always funny, the 30 Rock star admits


As a multi-tasker, she puts even James Franco to shame. But actress, book author, screenwriter, producer, mother, youngest-ever Mark Twain Prize for American Humor honoree and seven-time Emmy winner Tina Fey has one more label she’s ready to add to her resumé: life coach to Gwyneth Paltrow.

“Any time you talk about being a working mother and you complain about it in any way, people eat your face,” Fey tells InStyle for its April issue, on sale Friday. “I remember reading some interview where Gwyneth Paltrow said something like, ‘I missed my kids on the set one day and I was crying.’ And I thought, Yeah, I’ve totally done that.”

Continues Fey, 40: “But on the Web site where I read it there were these furious comments. ‘But you’re a movie star!’ Yes, it’s much worse for a mom serving in Afghanistan. Of course. But there’s just no forgiveness.”

Exercising her formidable talents is still a stretch, given the time constraints in a day. Yet, as Fey admits, “You need a lot of help, and you need not to be afraid to ask for help.” She credits a great nanny and husband (since 2001) Jeff Richmond, musician and 30 Rock co-producer, who is also “a full participant” at home.

“But even still,” she says, “every 12 weeks or so, you just kind of lose it. Then you gather it back up.”

Daughter Alice’s Showbiz Instincts

Fey, on the promotional trail for her new memoir, Bossypants (“I thought for a minute about calling the book Having It All: Love, Work, Jaw Pain,” she says), is able to flex her muscle as 30 Rock boss by occasionally bringing her daughter, Alice, to the set.

There, the 5-year-old likes to play with actor Jack McBrayer, says her mom, who adds: “She’s also figured out that it’s funny to show people your butt.”

Revealing something of the Alice-Tina dynamic, Fey, tells InStyle: “Kids are definitely the boss of you. Anyone who will barge into the room while you are on the commode is the boss of you. And when you explain to them that you’re on the commode and that they should leave but they don’t? That’s a high-level boss.”

Which leads to the obvious question. Asked if she’d like more kids, Fey responds to interviewer Henry Alford, “If you’re asking me to do that with you, I cannot.”

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