Jada Pinkett Smith is speaking out about the recent #JusticeForJada campaign and opening up about how sexual violence has affected her own family.
In a recent interview with Us Weekly, Jada explained how the recent incident involving a 16-year-old girl’s rape going viral as an online meme last month hit very close to home. According to the actress, someone attempted to date-rape her niece recently:
“If you saw what I put on Facebook, you also saw that this could happen to any woman that we know and the unfortunate part is that my niece was given a date-rape drug that weekend,” she told Us. “Thank god — she’s 20 — so thank god that nothing happened, because she was with some responsible guys that took care of her, and with three of her friends. She said, ‘oh my god I can’t feel my…’ she was losing consciousness. Thank god the people she was with put her in a room, closed the door, and she didn’t come to for three and a half hours.”
Jada later explains that she was up front about the whole situation with her daughter Willow, who is only 13:
“I’m not a conventional parent, which I take a lot of pride in,” she stated. “The first thing I had my niece do was sit down with my daughter and a couple of her friends and tell her about that experience. 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.”
She followed up by explaining her parenting style:
“What I do with Willow is I give her the opportunity to be empowered by having herself first,” she said. “Because when you allow a person to be an individual and you allow a person to have power within and have confidence on who they are, you’ll never have to look into the eyes of a man and question whether it’s a yes or a no. She’s gonna be very clear: No. She’s gonna be very clear: yes. And she’s gonna be in a position to be able to determine how to protect herself. Know when you’re in danger. Should you be a girl that goes into a room with four men drinking. Should you? Even if you think you know them? Is this about wanting to be the cool girl or is this about wanting to set a standard for yourself?”
Jada and Will have been criticized for their “loose” style of parenting in the past, but when it comes to instilling values in their children and communicating with them, we think they are doing a great job.
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