Jennifer Lopez held onto hope after she split from Ben Affleck in 2004.
17 years since the superstars rocked the world as Bennifer, a source close to Page Six has admitted that Lopez, 51, has always held a special place in her heart for Affleck, 48, after their publicized breakup. "Jennifer always saw Ben as the one that got away,” an insider told the celebrity gossip outlet. “She was crushed after they broke up, though she felt at the time that she had no other choice but to call off their engagement."
While the entertainer and actor made waves before and during their 2002 engagement, they postponed their wedding the following year and separated afterward. "As hot and heavy as their relationship was, they were on very different paths at the end of it," the source continued. "Jennifer was ready to settle down and have kids, but Ben wasn’t keen on giving up his bachelor lifestyle just yet. In the end, she got tired of waiting for him to come around — even though it broke her heart to end things."
Lopez previously referred to the split as her "first real heartbreak," which eventually led to her romance with her future husband, Marc Anthony, who helped her believe in love once again. "Marc came back into my life three days after I should have been at the altar saying ‘I do’ to another man," she wrote in her 2014 book, True Love.
Meanwhile, it seems Lopez’s former flame, Alex Rodriguez, has come to terms that a reconciliation with the triple threat is no longer in the cards. "When they first split, he wanted to work things out, and still held on to hope that he and J.Lo would get back together. He's come to terms with the fact that it's over now," an insider revealed. For the time being, Rodriguez has pivoted his attention to "trying to focus on himself and what's in store for his future."