Mum-of-two Jada Pinkett Smith has opened up about the moment her son asked for legal emancipation at the age of 15.
Jada Pinkett Smith and her husband, Will Smith, have two children together and while the family do have a close relationship, Jada says she was shocked and ‘devastated’ when Jaden, now aged 19, said he wanted to permission to leave home.
Speaking on her Facebook series Red Table Talk, Jada opened up about the experience with Jaden. She recalled:
“At 15 years old, Jaden, and I remember this day specifically, it’s probably one of the most heartbreaking moments of my life. You got to a point where you told me straight up, you were like, “Mom, I have to leave here to live my life”.
Emancipation is the legal process in which a child is freed from the control of their parents or guardians. The child’s parent or guardian is also relinquished from any responsibility towards the child. Jada explained that while it wasn’t what she wanted, she knew she couldn’t delay the process if that was really what Jaden wanted. She said:
“I remember thinking to myself, as devastated as I was, I was like, “He’s right. The time is now. He’s 15. It’s time for him to leave the house”.
Despite asking for the freedom, Jaden never actually went through with the process of emancipation. He explained his decision not to go through with it while on the Ellen DeGeneres show with his dad back in 2013. He joked:
“See, here’s the thing. I’m not going anywhere. The thing that people don’t get is everything at this house is free. I can get anything and everything at his house, so I’m going to be there for 20, 30 years”.
If you’re child asked for legal freedom, how would you react?