It's been five years since Sandra Bullock filed for divorce from her ex-husband, Jesse James
, and now the former Monster Garage
star is opening up about their highly publicized split.
The 46-year-old reality star split with Bullock in April 2010, after several women claimed to have affairs with him while he was still married to the 51-year-old Oscar winner. James issued a public apology to Bullock at the time, stating, "There is only one person to blame for this whole situation, and that is me. It's because of my poor judgment that I deserve everything bad that is coming my way."
James now says the hardest part of the divorce was losing his relationship with Bullock's now 5-year-old son, Louis
, whom the two had initially adopted together in January 2010.
"I think losing my son that I adopted, for sure -- not being able to see him and see him grow up and all that stuff," James candidly says during his upcoming appearance on Yahoo Sports' In Depth with Graham Bensinger
. "Whether that's fair, whether I should've lost a kid due to infidelity -- which I don't think anybody ever does -- but I think with 'Hollywood law,' that's totally fair."
"I made mistakes and did stuff that I shouldn't have," he further admits. "I handled the situation not the way I should have, and you know what? I got divorced and lost a kid I adopted because of it."
Aside from losing Louis, James says dealing with constant paparazzi at the time was also very difficult.
"It got pretty bad. I beat the s**t out of a bunch of them," he claims. "Just wait till the night when they didn't see me coming or run their cars off the road. You know, it's fair game. They're trying to make my life miserable and make money off of it, so, I should be entitled to do the same. You just gotta be sneaky about it so you don't get sued."
Looking back, he says he accepts total responsibility for his tarnished reputation, yet still has hard feelings towards his ex-wife when it comes to allegations that he's a racist. Shortly after the cheating scandal, a photo surfaced of him in Nazi regalia.
"The photo shocked me and made me sad. This is not the man I married," Bullock told People about the photo in April 2010. "This was stupid, this was ignorant. Racism, anti-Semitism, sexism, homophobia, anything Nazi and a boatload of other things have no place in my life. And the man I married felt the same."
James says the actress didn't defend him enough.
"I think the adultery part was totally fair 'cause I made big mistakes and did stuff I shouldn't have, and so I deserved what I had coming -- I think the whole Nazi part of it wasn't fair, and I think it was fueled by her and her publicist," he says. "They could've, like -- they knew that stuff wasn't true ... her exact quote to Us magazine was, 'That's not the man I married,' so I'm like, 'oh God.' Just like, poured gasoline and made it erupt."
"That stuff kinda hurts me because man, I grew up in an all-black neighborhood and like, we adopted a black son," he laughs. "And not because he was black -- my requirement for the adoption was like, hey, I want the kid that needs us the most."
Bullock herself has remained tight-lipped about their split, except to say that she's clearly moved on. "We're all where we're supposed to be," Bullock told Vogue
in September 2013. "I am exactly where I want to be now. You can't go backward. I'm not going backward. I'm grateful that I'm here, blessed to have what I have. Nobody can be prepared for anything. If you end up in a place where you can look back and go, 'It happened, but I'm so lucky to be sitting where I am sitting .... '"
She also obviously has an amazing relationship with her son. "Louis has no idea that I'm in this film," Bullock told ET about her adorable son at the Minions premiere in June
, adding that she was first introduced to the popular animated characters by him. "He won't put two and two together -- at least not anytime soon. If he does, I'll be shocked. The kid surprises me all the time."
Still, she was adorably coy
about her reported new relationship when ET caught up with her earlier this month.
"Who says I have a new boyfriend?" she teased ET on the red carpet at the Toronto International Film Festival. "Everything in my life is great right now."