Ben Affleck helped former fiancee Jennifer Lopez decide what to do when her marriage hit the rocks.

The 38-year-old actor - whose engagement to the singer-and-actress ended in January 2004 - allegedly received an email from J.Lo's mother Guadalupe Lopez asking him to help her daughter when she was contemplating whether to stay with her spouse Marc Anthony.

A source told Us Weekly magazine: "Guadalupe reached out to Ben over email. She wanted advice for Jennifer.

"She always liked and trusted him. [Ben] replied back on email, wished her well and offered what he could."

Three days after receiving an email from Ben - who has daughters Violet, five, and two-year-old Seraphina with wife Jennifer Garner - J.Lo announced the end of her marriage.

However, friends insist the 'American Idol' judge - who has three-year-old twins Max and Emme with Marc - is better off without the singer-and-actor.

An insider said: "It was a very bad marriage, and Jennifer got the courage to end things. Marc was a terrible husband."

Those close to Jennifer cite her spouse's jealousy and controlling nature for the problems in their relationship.

One friend said: "Jennifer actually has low self-esteem. And Marc really played into that insecurity. That's why she put up with his abuse for such a long time."