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Will Smith Breaks Down His And Jada’s Parenting Philosophy

It’s not secret that Will and Jada’s kids are a bit…different than the average child. Already both creatives with acting and song credits under their belts, well-known for their eclectic styles and artistic streak, and habits toward philosophying on even the simplest isht, Willow and Jaden were clearly cultivated to embrace their every thought and whim.

E! News got down to the nitty-gritty of Will and Jada’s parenting style with quotes from over the years detailing what they do as parents that might be just a bit different than the average Mommy and Daddy out here.

For one, the Smiths don’t believe in “punishment” for their kids in a traditional sense. As Will said in 2013:

“We don’t do punishment. The way that we deal with our kids is, they are responsible for their lives. Our concept is, as young as possible, give them as much control over their lives as possible and the concept of punishment, our experience has been—it has a little too much of a negative quality.”

“So when they do things—and you know, Jaden, he’s done things—you can do anything you want as long as you can explain to me why that was the right thing to do for your life.”

And they also give their minis an open forum to speak frankly with them:

“They’re allowed to tell us everything that they did [in the circle of safety], and they can’t get in trouble. The rule is, if we find out after the circle of safety that there was something you didn’t say, there was hell to pay.”

Granted, we aren’t sure what “hell to pay” really means when there’s no punishment. But he’s big on letting the kids be who they are:

“What I do with my children, that I feel that the greatest gift that I can give my children is the freedom to be who they are. [My wife] and I are very serious about finding what they are, and encouraging them to be what they are because you can never be happy being what you’re not.”

And ultimately, the Smiths don’t believe in treating their kids as possessions or extensions of them…but as individuals and equals:

“I think that, specifically in African American households, the idea coming out of slavery, there’s a concept of your children being property and that was a major part that Jada and I released with our kids. We respect our children the way we would respect any other person.

Things like cleaning up their room. You would never tell a full-grown adult to clean their room, so we don’t tell our kids to clean their rooms. We tell our kids, ‘You don’t have a room, that’s our room and we are letting you borrow it.’ So the same way you would say to an adult if you let them use your car, you say, ‘Yo man, clean my car! Don’t drive around all filthy like that!’ And it’s perfectly reasonable for you to want an adult to clean your car, so we feel it’s perfectly reasonable to ask our kids to clean the rooms that we are letting them use.”

Interesting! What do you think of the Smiths’ parenting practices??



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