Jessica Chastain says no one in her family noticed when she didn't graduate high school.

The 45-year-old actress was raised by her grandmother and her very young mother and she revealed that the drug addiction issues of her younger sister - who died by suicide when Jessica was in her twenties - took up most of the attention in their household, so Jessica dropping out went unnoticed.

She told The Guardian newspaper: "I dropped out of high school. In my family, no one stopped me, no one was like, you can’t be an actor. But I’m sure they’d rather I’d fallen in love with being a dentist.

"But my sister was having a lot of difficulties, and everyone was very stressed. So the focus was on that. When I didn’t graduate, no one even noticed.

"Yeah. It wasn’t even a conversation of, ‘Uh, are we going to your graduation?’ Nothing."

Jessica - who has two children with her husband Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo - also revealed she believes it is important for women to be able to choose if they want to have children or not.

She explained: "The problem is that my mom, my grandmother and all the women in my family were pregnant when they were 17, because they were never given that choice. Birth control is expensive. And they couldn’t rely on men to do their part, to be responsible. So it’s very important to me that women have access to contraceptives and freedom over that. Because I know a lot of people are freaked out when women decide not to have children. But I think that’s great!"

Jessica's mother later had two more children with Jessica's stepfather and she said: "There’s almost 20 years between me and my youngest sibling."