Angelina Jolie is People’s cover star this week, and the Eternals actress dedicated her interview to speaking about her life with her six children—Maddox, 20; Pax, 17; Zahara, 16; Shiloh, 15; and twins Vivienne and Knox, who are 13.
Jolie had glowing words for them and their impact on her and each other. “They’re pretty great people, and because there’s so many of them, I think they’ve had a very significant effect on each other,” she said. “It’s not like I’m the head of anything. I’m very honest with my kids. And I’m very human with my kids.”
She added that she has let herself evolve with them as they’ve grown from kids into teenagers and young adults. “I have six very individual human beings in my home,” she said. “I am so excited about all the different stages and feelings and curiosities that they go through. Why wouldn’t you be? We’re supposed to help them figure out who they are. And you can’t figure out who they are if you don’t enthusiastically develop with them.”
Maddox, Vivienne, Angelina, Zahara, Shiloh, and Knox.
“I’m not a perfect parent by any means,” she added. “Every day I feel like I’m more aware of everything I don’t do right. And I’m pretty tough on myself, because I feel often, ‘Am I doing the right thing? Did I say the right thing?’” Jolie said that their kindness to her “has been very healing to me.”
In most interviews, Jolie doesn’t shy away from talking about her kids’ impact on her. In November 2020 amid the election, Jolie spoke to Edward Enninful for British Vogue about her experience quarantining with them.
“I feel like I’m lacking in all the skills to be a traditional stay-at-home mom,” she said. “I’m managing through it because the children are quite resilient, and they’re helping me, but I’m not good at it at all.”
“I love them,” she continued. “I feel like we’re such a team. It may sound clichéd, but you love and you try, and even if you burn the eggs, that doesn’t matter in the end. But also, you’ve met our kids. They’re pretty capable.”
They do challenge her opinions at times too, she added: “They think that I’m a bit ridiculous, as they should. And they all know me in different ways. You know, they’ve all crossed into that moment when they realize that there’s nothing special about me. I’m just older. I don’t have all the secrets. I just mean well.”
Alyssa Bailey News and Strategy Editor Alyssa Bailey is the news and strategy editor at ELLE.com, where she oversees coverage of celebrities and royals (particularly Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton).
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