Naomi Watts says Nicole Kidman helped her to believe in herself.

The 'While We're Young' star admits she couldn't have carved out a successful career in Hollywood without the support of her best friend.

She said: ''I was lucky that Nicole Kidman was always there to support me, console me, keep my spirits up and help me believe in myself. She's been such a good friend over the years.''

The 46-year-old beauty, who has sons Alexander, seven, and Samuel, six, with long-term partner Liev Schreiber, admits she is reluctant to take on traumatic roles these days because she is so happy in her personal life.

She said: ''Early in my career I was drawn to darker material. But now I have so much joy in my family life that I don't want to spoil that mood.

''I feel such a warmth with Liev and the boys. I look forward to everything now. I've always had a happy nature, it was just a matter of getting to a place where I could let that side take charge again.

''Me and my men have such fun together.''

But the Australian star admits she will never forget how it felt to be a struggling actress and doesn't take her success for granted.

She told US' OK! magazine: ''It was scary trying to find work and having no money and no medical insurance. I had very few friends and would spend days alone, sitting in cafes and feeling miserable.

''Even when I started becoming famous, I never forgot what it felt like to worry about making ends meet.''