After more than two decades of marriage, Jada Pinkett Smith has a word of advice for those considering dating a man going through a divorce: Don’t do it, according to reports from E! Online.
The 47-year-old Jada married 50-year-old entertainer Will Smith in 1997, two years after his divorce from Sheree Zampino in 1995. During an episode of her talk show Red Table Talk, Jada pointed out that Will was not involved in an affair with her while he was married, although technically Will was still legally married when he asked Jada out for the first time. Will, also appearing on the show, revealed that he asked her out only moments after agreeing to grant Zampino a divorce, which became final a few months later.
Speaking to E! News, Jada revealed that she has no advice to give her children in regards to dating, but instead tells them about her own experiences in life and hopes that they can learn from her mistakes.
Jada said, “They have to find their way in regards to that because I’m gonna tell you, you gotta be real careful with that because if anybody was in their right mind, they would’ve told me not to date Will when I did. He was in the middle of a divorce! Fresh! I would not suggest anybody do that.”
While she took a massive risk, Jada feels that things were just meant to be, saying, “But you don’t know what your fate is. Looking back, that was not a smart move. But it worked out how it was supposed to.”
In the premiere episode of Red Table Talk, Jada and Zampino talked openly about the issue. Jada was almost apologetic during the conversation.
“Because I did not understand marriage, I didn’t understand divorce,” she said. “I will say that I probably should have fell back.”
“Ya think?” Sheree said in response. “Oh, you thought it was done?”
“See, that’s where I was wrong,” Jada replied. “Now, being a married woman and if Will and I were to get divorced now, my God. So when I think back about where I was, some of my insensitivity, some of my inconsideration just in regards to you guys unwinding a marriage.”
When Jada and Will married in 1997, she was pregnant with the couple’s first child together, son Jaden. Jada spoke to E! News about the close relationship she has with her children, saying “I know when I have to put those boundaries down as ‘Mommy.’ My kids respect me and I respect them. It’s not really difficult to transition from the parenting role into friendship role.”