Don't mess with Mama Smith! Jada Pinkett Smith unloaded her thoughts to Net-A-Porter's The Edit regarding the recent controversy involving her daughter Willow as well as her buzzed-about marriage to husband Will Smith.
Asked about the viral picture of Willow, 13, lying in bed with a shirtless 20-year-old pal named Moises Arias, Pinkett Smith replied, "Just don't pollute something that's not dirty." The protective mother of two went on to explain that good parenting requires trust.
"I want my kids to be happy and I want them to be themselves," the actress, 42, told The Edit. "I was saying to a friend the other day, 'Remember, our kids are not us.' They're not. Sometimes we're trying to fix things that happened to us or projecting [onto them], and that's a terrible, terrible trap."
Pinkett Smith told Us Weekly last Monday, July 21, that she was proud of how she's raised her daughter. "I'm not a conventional parent, which I take a lot of pride in," she mused to Us. "I don't just sit with Willow and go, 'Hey, this is what Mommy thinks. Let me just bring in a little reality to validate what Mommy's been talking to you about.'"
Instead, her goal has been to challenge her daughter to be bold and independent. "What I do with Willow," she revealed, "is I give her the opportunity to be empowered by having herself first."
In return, her teenage daughter inspired Pinkett Smith to testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and work on a CNN documentary on the topic of human trafficking.
"When your daughter comes to you and is like, 'Hey Mom, do you know that there are people selling girls my age for sex in this country?' My first response was, 'Oh no, that doesn’t happen here,'" she recalled to The Edit. "Then I did my research and I thought, 'How could this be going on here and I not know?' I felt ashamed and, being a woman in an industry that has a voice, I just felt this enormous amount of responsibility to at least let other people know."
Another hot button issue for critics of the Smith household has been her 17-year marriage to her husband. "We used to have all these rules, [but] as you go on in your relationship, you just get into a flow," she said, squashing rumors of their allegedly troubled romance.
"Will, to me, encompasses everything," the actress gushed. "It's almost as if calling him 'my husband' is too small of a word for what he means in my life… I think I had a very stuck idea of what a husband looks like, what a wife should be. Once I broke all of that, a whole new world opened for me and man, oh, man, I got to see him in all his glory. And so that’s what it’s evolved into. And I'm just ecstatic about it."
As for the open marriage rumors surrounding their relationship? "The coping technique is knowing what the truth is," Pinkett Smith explained. "When you know that what’s going on in your house is so the opposite [of what’s being said], and you also know that when there’s mystery, people fill in the gaps, that's okay. And then you look back at it and look at how creative people can be, and it's kind of entertaining. We can laugh because it’s so ridiculous. But I get it. I don’t take it personally."