Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt have talked about all six of their children through the years. But their first biological child, Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, has repeatedly stolen the spotlight from Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Vivienne, and Knox for what Angelina has termed her daughter’s “fantastic” desire to wear clothes like her brothers. Now Jolie’s and Pitt’s comments about Shiloh are adding fuel to a controversy sparked by singer Paloma Faith, who announced her plan to focus on gender neutral parenting of her kids.
Celebrity Gender Neutral Parenting Club Includes Russell Brand
The Daily Mail reported that although Paloma has not shared the name or sex of her child, who was born last December 5, Faith has unveiled her plans with baby daddy Leyman Lahcine to raise their child “gender neutral.” Rather than dress her child in gender-specific attire or go for blue-is-for-boys, pink-is-for-girls color schemes, Paloma said she is focused on gender equality.
“I want two or three kids in all and they’ll be gender neutral.”
Faith isn’t the only celebrity parent to take the spotlight with these types of parenting proclamations. In addition to Angelina Jolie’s and Brad Pitt’s comments about Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, Russell Brand recently announced that he and his wife Laura Gallacher will not put gender identity constraints on their child Mabel.
Even though Paloma kept her child’s gender and name private, she did share the challenges that she faced in giving birth. The singer admitted that before the labor began, she planned to avoid drugs and become the “perfect Earth Mother.”
Paloma Faith Sparks Gender Neutral Parenting Controversy
But after 20 hours of labor, Faith went for “all the drugs imaginable.” She underwent an emergency Cesarean before welcoming her baby, who was premature. The singer called it the “absolute most incredible thing that’s ever happened to me,” but emphasized that it was all worth it.
Despite her plans to raise her child with a gender neutral approach, Paloma doesn’t view herself as unique. Instead, she feels that she’s become an insider whereas before she felt like an outsider.
“You enter into this secret club with other parents… Now I finally feel part of something.”
But being “part of something” hasn’t protected Faith from an intense Internet backlash. Commenting on the Daily Mail‘s article, several commentators proclaimed it scandalous that Paloma and other celebrity parents are refraining from gender stereotypes.
“We are headed towards a generation of very confused individuals,” warned one person. “How do parents of so called gender neutral children plan on teaching them about the changes [in their] bodies?”
Others were even harsher, with one urging “STOP” and another contending that the “hippy parents” are “creating an issue of gender” even though such issues “shouldn’t” exist.
Megan Fox Gets Slammed For Allowing Son To Don Dress
Teen Vogue pointed out that actress Megan Fox received a series of “deplorable” slams when she allowed her son to wear a dress, posting a photo on Instagram of little Noah in a dress fashioned in honor of the film Frozen.
Instagram users went wild finding ways to denounce Fox for avoiding gender conformity.
“No values. No morals. Promoting gay perversion. Destruction of traditional gender roles lead to a totalitarian society granting government officials more power.”
Others claimed that allowing the little boy to wear a dress was like allowing him to be “disrespectful,” urging Megan to teach her son the “right way.”
Despite these harsh comments, Megan has, like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt with Shiloh, avoided using LGBT labels for her son.
Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt Don’t Label Shiloh Jolie-Pitt
Shiloh Jolie-Pitt frequently is used as an example of gender neutral parenting styles because Angelina and Brad have not forced her to wear clothes that conform to gender-specific stereotypes, as the Inquisitr pointed out.
Jolie has shared that her daughter’s desire to “be a boy” resulted in Shiloh’s fondness for sporting “boys’ everything” and viewing herself as “one of the brothers.” Angelina has summed up her views on the now-11-year-old’s style as “fascinating,” emphasizing that she will not “force” any of her children to “be something they are not.”
Forcing children to be “something they are not” is “bad parenting,” added Jolie. Pitt has provided his own comments about their daughter, revealing that she wanted to be called John when she was little.
Rather than attempt to define Shiloh or put LGBT labels on her, as some publications have, Angelina and Brad have chosen to let their daughter choose her own path, pointed out the New Republic.
“While the rest of us are trying to define Shiloh, her parents are simply letting her be who she is.”
Looking content in photos, Shiloh reportedly has continued to dress like her brothers without interference from her parents. Ultimately, noted the publication, despite all those worrying about gender norms and possible outcomes of non-conformity, good parenting involves loving and accepting children “as they ask to be accepted.”
[Featured Image by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images]