Charlize Theron has opened up about the time her eldest child, Jackson, explained to her that she was “not a boy,” and how she is wholeheartedly raising her as a girl following the sweet admission.
While promoting her upcoming film Long Shot, the South African-born actor candidly told the Daily Mail: “I thought she was a boy, too, until she looked at me when she was three years old and said [she wasn’t].
Theron went on to clarify that she has two “beautiful” daughters who she wants to support and celebrate – “just like any parent” should do.
She added: “They were born who they are and exactly where in the world both of them get to find themselves as they grow up, and who they want to be, is not for me to decide.”
“My job as a parent is to celebrate them and to love them and to make sure that they have everything they need in order to be what they want to be. I will do everything in my power for my kids to have that right and to be protected within that.”
Theron adopted Jackson back in March 2012 and three years later, welcomed four-year-old August into the family. She’s always been very vocal about both the challenges and the delights of motherhood, as well as quick to dismiss any assumptions that she may feel like she’s ‘missing out’ by raising children that are not biologically her own.
In an interview conducted by Chelsea Handler on behalf of Elle last year, the 43-year-old explained: “In South Africa, orphanages were everywhere, and I wanted a brother or sister. I was always aware that there are so many children in this world who don’t have families.
“Adoption is a very personal thing—I know people whom I love dearly who don’t feel that they could raise another child as their own. I respect that.
“But for me—and I can’t be the only person out there—I never saw a difference in raising an adopted child versus my own biological child. I don’t feel like I’m missing out on something. This was always my first choice, even when I was in a relationship.”
Theron dated musician Stephan Jenkins from 1998 to 2001. From 2002 to 2010, she was in a relationship with Irish actor Stuart Townsend. More recently however, she dated – and then later got engaged to – Sean Penn before they called quits on their romance in June 2015.