Jada Pinkett Smith tells ‘Red Table Talk’ viewers critics thought it was ‘dangerous’ for her to let her Black teenage son wear a skirt.
When it comes to mom-shaming, Jada Pinkett Smith says that she experienced way more criticism for the mothering of her son Jaden than her daughter Willow.
The 49-year-old actress made the revelation during the Oct. 13 episode of Red Table Talk.
Jada – who has Jaden, 22, and Willow, 19 with husband Will Smith, 52 – confessed that some members of the Black community judged her in 2016 when her son modeled a skirt as part of a Louis Vuitton campaign.
“I got shamed a lot for Willow but Jaden was like, that was hardcore,” the actress said. “I think as Jaden got older, you know, when he did the Louis Vuitton thing, when he was wearing a skirt. And then he isn’t what people consider your typical Black man, which is like what is that supposed to be?”
“Even in the community we create stereotypes around ourselves and it’s something that we as a community, really have to learn how to let go of,” she added in the episode that you can see above. “I know that people felt like it’s dangerous. ‘No, you cannot afford to raise your children this way, because it’s dangerous. You know what it’s like to be a Black or Brown person in this world. You are doing your kids a disservice.’ I understood where that fear came from, but I also understood – from having been on the street and having had been not your ‘conventional Black girl’ in the streets of Baltimore – I knew that self-confidence is what helped me survive.”
Nearly three years later a post of a photo of the campaign is still on Jaden’s Instagram page and so are the negative comments. One person wrote in disgust, “He is a good kid and has talent but this is clearly some rich kid bullsh*t…surrounded by rich white kids…try this nonsense in the hood [sic].”
Jada wasn’t the only celeb mother to discuss mom-shaming during the Oct. 13 episode. Actress Jessica Alba also joined the Red Table Talk ladies to discuss how she has been slammed for sharing photos of her three children – Honor, 12, Haven, 9, and Hayes, 2 – wearing face masks. After she shared the pictures on Instagram in July one fan accused her of “child abuse.” “It’s just absolutely ludicrous that we’re living in a day and age where health is politicized. My mind is blown,” Jessica, 39, told Jada, Willow and Jada’s mom Adrienne Banfield Norris (aka Gammy).
New mom Ashley Graham, 32, also revealed that she hasn’t been immune to criticism even though she has only been a parent for eight months. The model – who was slammed for breastfeeding her baby son Isaac at a restaurant – admitted that the criticism hurts. “I knew that it was coming and I was ready to combat it, but it never feels good to have someone tell you that you’re not doing a good enough job, that you’re doing something wrong,” she said on the Facebook Watch show. “I can sit here and tell you that I just brush it off, but I don’t brush it off.”