Jodie Foster feels she has "freedom" since splitting from her long-term girlfriend.

The 48-year-old actress-turned-director - who has sons Charles, 12, and Kit, nine, with an unknown father - separated from Cydney Bernard almost three years ago and though she admits it was one of the most "horrible" events that could have rocked her life, she embraced the opportunity it gave her.

She said: "There are three Terrible Things that happen to most people. One is your parents face death, the second is your kids grow up and leave you and the third is that the relationship you've been in forever disintegrates and you're alone.

"They're three horrible things, but they are also these three freedoms like, 'You're free!'. It's an opportunity, it's a sliver of opportunity. I feel like you have 10 seconds to really embrace the freedom, or just get stuck. Ten seconds to Take That sliver and change your life."

Jodie is currently caring for her mother, who is battling dementia, and insists she will never admit her into specialist care as she wants her parent to eventually die with dignity.

Asked if she would consider seeking residential care for her mother, she told Psychologies magazine: "Oh God no way. I'm going to feel good - I'm going to feel that the end honoured her and that she didn't have to lose her dignity.

"Dementia is an interesting thing. It's the hardest thing I've been through and yet also strangely sacred... I'm just here to care for her. I have no axe to grind. Mine will be the last face she sees."