He’s only seven years old. He needs me! I am not saying he doesn’t need his father, but I really believe he needs me more. I was his mommy for five and a half years and Ted took over that role for eighteen months. But I don’t know how anybody could possibly believe that I have less of a stake in raising that little boy than Mr. Kramer does. I’m his mother. I’m his mother.
Meryl Streep was asked to write her own dialogue for the court scene in Kramer Vs Kramer (1979) in which she justifies leaving her husband and son and fights for custody of her child. She wrote pages and pages on yellow jotting paper and presented it to the film’s director, Robert Benton, expecting him to cut it down to a few lines. He loved it so much that he kept all of it. The scene is regarded by many as the most heartbreaking scene of the film.