Charlie Sheen was a hot mess long before he married Denise Richards in 2002. By then, the hard-partying Two and a Half Men actor had an adult daughter from his high school girlfriend and had broken off his engagement to Kelly Preston. He also had a raging drug and alcohol addiction and was known for his violent outbursts! Despite it all, he and Richards remained married for four years, during which the stars welcomed two gorgeous daughters together. After their divorce, however, things turned tricky.

When Sheen, 53, split from third wife, Brooke Mueller — with whom he shares two sons — their custody and divorce battle got very ugly, very fast. Richards, 47, being the caring mom that she is, offered to take the boys, Max and Bob, in.

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“Nothing but praise for Denise Richards for taking in the two kids of her abusive, drug-addicted, violent, aggressive, unkind ex-husband… Think about that! There’s a special place in the world for someone like Denise Richards,” says lawyer Jill Stanley in a clip for REELZ’s new docuseries, Charlie Sheen & Denise Richards: Irreconcilable Difference.

At the time, Sheen was battling with drugs, debt, and various other crises. And after Mueller filed a restraining order from him, they were both unable to take care of their kids.

“People were shocked, although I think the world figured out, ‘Wow, Denise is a really good person when it comes to the kids, there’s pretty much nothing she won’t do,” recalls naughtygossip.com founder, Rob Shuter.

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Richards quickly proved to be a completely dedicated mother, even when the children weren’t actually hers.

“If it wasn’t for Denise, I just… I don’t know what would’ve happened to Charlie Sheen. Every mess that Charlie creates, Denise is there to pick up the slack. She’s a Wonder Woman! I just don’t understand why Denise is still, still giving to Charlie Sheen,” says Shuter.

Charlie Sheen & Denise Richards: Irreconcilable Differences airs Thursday, October 18 at 9 ET/PT.

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