Will Smith has opened up about how his daughter Willow “really tested” him after she achieved early fame with her single “Whip My Hair.”
Willow Smith’s early rise to stardom caused tension with her famous father. The singer, 18, revealed on Monday’s Red Table Talk they had a complicated relationship following the success of her debut single in 2010 when she was just 10 years old.
Willow told mom Jada Pinkett Smith on the Facebook Watch series, “I definitely had to forgive you and daddy for that whole ‘Whip My Hair’ thing. It was mostly daddy because he was so harsh at certain times. It was a couple of years, honestly. Trying to regain trust for not feeling like I was being listened to or like no one cared how I felt.”
The young star also said she didn’t know what she really wanted at such a young age.
“And I had to forgive myself because I felt guilty because everyone is trying to make me better, trying to make my dream,” Willow added. “But I didn’t really understand what my dream entailed.”
Will Smith, 50, spoke to “Haute Living” about experiencing a “mutiny” within his family in 2012 after his daughter Willow, 18, admitted she had to “forgive” him for how he handled her early fame. He revealed that his family’s reaction to his leadership style prompted him to change his perspective on how he viewed his wife, and their children.
Smith revealed that the moment led him to consider joining social media. “[I] secretly call  the year of the mutiny,” Smith explained. “And 2012 was really the year that my family rejected the direction of my leadership. And that was the main thing that happened.”
Although the “Bright” actor said he “lightened up” on his three children — Trey, 26, Jaden, 20, and Willow, 18 — over the years, he did say that he is still the leader.
“I am the leader, and the way that we win is by everyone doing what I say,” Smith said.
Smith went on to talk about his daughter and how she was the first person that “didn’t want to do what I said”
“Because she was the baby girl, she really had the most power over me,” Smith said. “As a man – if your daughter says no, there’s really nothing you can do.”
“She really tested me,” Smith added. “She was like, no she didn’t want to. She was done with “Whip My Hair. She was done with performing, and as a protest, she shaved her head bald. That was really the first time that I realized that my family wasn’t happy with the direction that I was taking them.”
Willow has since learned to forgive her parents, but more than that, she added that she also had to learn to forgive herself.
“And I had to forgive myself because I felt guilty because everyone is trying to make me better, trying to make my dream. But I didn’t really understand what my dream entailed,” Smith said.
By: Maytinee Kramer