â€œThere are so many other kids you can worry about. My kids? Theyâ€™re going to be all right. I get why people would criticize. But people need to know that Will and I would never put our children in a situation that would bring them detriment,â€ she says, her hazel eyes flashing.
â€œMy kids have no idea how I grew up,â€ Pinkett Smith continues. â€œEven in knowing my story, they couldnâ€™t know what that means. They have no RE-ALI-TY. None. My feeling is, my kids need to have challenges, in a safe way. If I survived everything that I survived in Baltimore and Will survived everything he survived in Philly, these kids surely can survive the Hollywood game. With so many heavyweights surrounding themâ€”from BeyoncÃ© and Jay-Z to Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith to Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthonyâ€”if they can fail in a circle like that, then they werenâ€™t going to win in the first place.â€
â€œAll I want for Trey (Willâ€™s oldest son from his first marriage), Jaden, and Willow is happiness,â€ she says. â€œAs long as theyâ€™re happy, and know how to maneuver in this world, Iâ€™m good.â€
On Ending Her Music Career
When Jaden did The Pursuit of Happyness, I was supposed to go on tour with Guns Nâ€™ Roses in Europe,â€ she says softly.
She turned down the offer and eventually disbanded the group. â€œIt was probably the most heartbreaking experience. But what I realized is that sometimes God will place things in your life that will make you recognize what your priorities are. I adore my son; heâ€™s my soul seed. There was no way that I was going to allow him to do [a movie] and not have his mother.â€
On her husband of 14 years, Will Smith:
â€œWe create together; we love on each other,â€ Pinkett Smith says of the man she still rocks out with to old-school hip-hop on satellite radio. â€œWe raise our kids together. We are building something together.â€
â€œPeople think that Will and I donâ€™t spend a lot of time together. Too much time, actually, if you ask me,â€ she says with a laugh. â€œItâ€™s always nice to have a little time apart. Sometimes you need that.â€
If she’s changed since entering the business at a younger age:
â€œSometimes you have to live who youâ€™re not, to know who you are,â€ she says.
â€œThat same girl you saw in Menace is the same girl who even then was listening to metal. But nobody knew that. If you talk to the Queen Latifahs and the Tupac Shakurs, theyâ€™d say, â€˜Of course!â€™ Iâ€™ve always been a lot of things.â€
On her kids’ personalities:
â€œBelieve it or not, theyâ€™re both like me and Will,â€ says Pinkett Smith of the coupleâ€™s children. â€œWillowâ€™s a lot like me â€“ just in the chances sheâ€™ll take. And then, Jaden has the drive of his father. Jaden and I are what I call introverted extroverts. Willow and Will are more pow! Jaden and I, well, we donâ€™t give that to just anybody.â€