On a heartfelt Father’s Day edition of Red Table Talk, Bad Boys star Will Smith sat down with his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith for a candid conversation about the “real weight of parenting,” influences from his dad, why divorce from his ex-wife was the “ultimate failure,” and a pivotal parenting moment he shared with his daughter, Willow Smith.
Will shared that he knew he wanted to be a dad at a very early age, at a “gentle” 6-years-old to be exact. However, due to “massive critical deficiencies” in his father’s parenting and punishment-style, Will knew that when it came to fatherhood he could “do it better than him.” It wasn’t until he had his first son with his ex-wife Sheree Zampino until he understood the “real weight of parenting.”
“I brought him (Trey) home, and I remember we put him in the bassinet and it was like stark terror. It was like, ‘I’m totally responsible for this life.’ I just cried so hard. It makes me teary right now,” a tearful Will shared.
Unfortunately, Will divorced from Sheree after 3 years of marriage when their son was just two-years-old. Describing this as “a really difficult time” in his life, he said “divorce was the ultimate failure for me. I’ve been hurt a lot in my adult life, but I don’t think anything touches the failure of getting divorced from my 2-year-old son’s mother.”
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Dear Will, There are so many things that I haven’t and don’t get right but there is one thing I got really right and that’s choosing you as the Father of my children. I didn’t know much about Fathering when we had children but our parenting journey together has taught me so much about the need and the importance of having a present, courageous and loving Father available. You taught me that a Father’s place is intricate and extremely specific and looks very different from Mothering and that’s the part I had to learn to respect. Thank you for respecting and ALWAYS supporting my Mothering which I have found to be one of your greatest super powers. I’m deeply grateful to you Will. I love you and Happy Father’s Day! I hope you guys will watch the Red Table Talk Father’s Day special as Will and I explore his Fathering journey. And I hope that there are Father’s out there that will feel more understood and appreciated after watching. STREAMING NOW. LINK IN MY BIO❣️
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In addition to teaching their kids the value of working, Will talked about a transformative time in fatherhood that he shared with his daughter Willow when she wanted to quit her 30-city tour back in 2010. Admitting that he used an inherited “military mindset” from his father to convince a then 9-year-old Willow to finish the tour, it wasn’t until she shaved her hair off in protest that he realized his “desire for her was overriding her desire for her” and that “a person will hate you if you keep forcing your wishes onto their life.”
What do you think of Will’s candid conversation about fatherhood and his failures in life? Tune in below for the full episode.
Jada And Will: Their First One-On-One Conversation
On this special Father's Day episode, Jada sits down with Will for one of the most intimate and vulnerable conversations the couple has ever shared. Will and Jada reflect on their 23 years of parenting, including the lessons they've learned, the failures they've overcome and how Will's divorce from his first wife shaped his approach as a father and husband. Plus, never-before-seen Smith family home videos and Father's Day surprises from Trey, Jaden & Willow.
Posted by Red Table Talk on Tuesday, June 16, 2020