‘Her Tears Were So Offensive:’ Jada Pinkett Smith Says She Didn’t Like When Daughter Willow Cried or Showed Vulnerability


Jada Pinkett Smith talked about her past mothering style in the latest episode of “Red Table Talk.”

The discussion centered on mother-daughter relationships, and the actress Demi Moore was a guest, as were her daughters Rumer and Tallulah Willis.

At one point, Pinkett Smith’s daughter Willow Smith said her mom doled out a lot of tough love as she was growing up, and whenever she became emotional, it would really bother the “Set It Off” actress.

“Back in the day if I would be crying or have an upset, the energy was always like, take that somewhere else and deal with it on your own,” Willow explained.

Pinkett Smith said that approach wasn’t just used on her daughter, it was used on herself as well, because she blocked off her emotions.

“That’s how I was treating myself, I didn’t want to be with my own feelings,” she explained. “There’s this wall, this armor, and I was thinking about how it does a disservice to everybody we love, including ourselves.”

“That was the place that I got to, getting to a place of vulnerability where I could cry in front of Willow,” added Pinkett Smith. “It took me a long time because of that forging, there’s this wall, there’s this armor.”

Jada Pinkett Smith (left) said she used to be offended by tears from her daughter Willow Smith (right). (Photo: Rochelle Brodin/Getty Images Entertainment via Getty Images)

The 48-year-old then apologized to Willow for the way she used to parent, and the two embraced.

The “Girl’s Trip” star also attached her former parenting style to her upbringing and wanting to teach Willow strength from a very young age.

“The way we grew up, the way my mother grew up, you feel like you have to be strong, and the first thing you want to do is teach your girls how to be strong,” Pinkett Smith explained.

“As we come into our healing, as we come into our softness and our vulnerability, there was a time when her tears were so offensive to me,” she went on. “I was like take that over there, we can’t afford that here. Not realizing, bitch, you can afford it here. You’re not in Baltimore anymore, OK? You absolutely can afford it here.”

By the comments people left, it was easy to tell that a lot of them connected to the episode, and they related to how Pinkett Smith used to deal with Willow.

“I just watched the show! It was so powerful and brutally honest. I cried and thought about how many people these conversations help every week,” one person wrote. “Thank you for talking the real talk. I love you all so much!❤”

“I completely relate to not showing your children vulnerable moments,” wrote someone else. “I’ve always been the strong one that holds everything together for my family. That’s all I knew growing up. But now that my children are grown I’m learning to show them that you can be vulnerable and it’s not weak of you to be that way.”

You can see the conversation below beginning at the 23:53 mark.

Demi Moore and Her Daughters

For the first time, Demi Moore and daughters Rumer & Tallulah Willis come to the Table to share intimate details about Demi’s best-selling memoir “Inside Out,” the difficulties of their traumatic mother-daughter relationship, Demi's life threatening addiction, as well as the men in her life and why their family didn’t speak for three years.

Posted by Red Table Talk on Monday, November 4, 2019
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