Charlize Theron Raises Jackson As Transgender Girl — Opens Up About Her Parenting And Gets Praised For New Approach

Jun 10, 2021 by apost team

Actress Charlize Theron opened up about her parenting approach with her eldest adopted child, Jackson, in an interview with the Daily Mail back in April 2019. Her 9-year-old daughter, who was born male, told her mother that she was a girl. Theron expanded on her daughter's coming out and about the most important things she likes to teach her kids as she raises them.

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Charlize Theron (2019), (Gregg DeGuire/WireImage/Getty Images)

Actress Charlize Theron, 45, revealed in April 2019 that her child, Jackson, is transgender.

Theron said that she thought Jackson was a boy, too, as she explained to the Daily Mail. "Yes, I thought she was a boy, too," Theron said, "until she looked at me when she was three years old and said: 'I am not a boy!'"

The 9-year-old is now frequently spotted wearing dresses on outings with her mom.

"I have two beautiful daughters who, just like any parent, I want to protect and I want to see thrive," Theron added

The Oscar-winner continued on to explain that she wants Jackson to be exactly who she wants to be, believing it doesn't matter how a child grows up. "'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," she told the Mail.

"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," she added. "And I will do everything in my power for my kids to have that right and to be protected within that."

Charlize Theron (2019), (Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

Sending The Right Message Out To The Public

On Sept. 26, 2020, Theron, who is known for keeping her family out of the spotlight, took to Instagram to share a series of pictures of her children to commemorate National Daughters Day. She captioned the post: “My heart belongs to these two beautiful powerhouses. I will never be the same. Happy #NationalDaughtersDay ❤️”

Therapist Tanya Koifman praised the "Mad Max" star's approach in an interview with Bravo TV.

"It is so wonderful when celebrities such as Charlize openly not only accept, but embrace, their child for who they are," Koifman said. "When people see celebrities embracing their transgender, non-binary, and gender-nonconforming children, it sends the right message to the public, and it can help lead to greater visibility and acceptance, and hopefully a safer existence for transgender people.”

Charlize Theron (2020), (Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

Jackson Theron Was Adopted In The United States

According to the South China Morning Post, Jackson Theron was born in January 2012 and adopted by Theron shortly after. But news of the adoption was only announced in March 2012, according to PEOPLE magazine.

Theron, who is South African, became the target of a lot of discrimination and flak at the time of the adoption. Fans and media outlets in South Africa criticized her for not adopting a child locally, especially when the country’s struggles with poverty, HIV, AIDS and homelessness are taken into account. According to The Borgen Project, there were roughly 14 million orphaned children in South Africa in 2017. That number represents 14 percent of all children living in the country.

Theron responded to the criticism when she told NPR in 2019 that she did not have a specific country in mind when she applied to adopt.

“I wanted to believe that somehow my child would find me in the way that we were just meant to be,” she said. “So I wasn't specific with anything … In whatever country they would allow me as a single woman to adopt, that’s where I filed.”

“I grew up in a country where people lived with half-truths and lies and whispers and nobody said anything outright, and I was raised very specifically not to be like that,” she said in a 2019 interview with talk show host Jimmy Fallon, according to the South China Morning Post. 

“I am raising two beautiful proud black African girls and I want them to find themselves and not necessarily push my ancestry on them,” she added.

Charlize Theron (2020), (Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

She Wants People To Use The Right Pronouns

Theron told Pride Source in 2019 about the importance of using the correct pronouns with people. “I feel like as her mother, for me, it was important to let the world know that I would appreciate it if they would use the right pronouns for her,” the actress said. “I think it became harder for us the older she got that people were still writing about her in the wrong pronouns, and also I was still talking about her in the press using the wrong pronoun. It really hurt her feelings. I don’t want to be that mom.” She also shared that she and her family make Pride Month an annual tradition.

“I’m very vocal about what I believe is the right thing to do and how we should treat each other,” she continued. “And at the same time I feel like the thing that maybe I could bring to the table in moving all of this stuff forward is to just make sure that the stories that I tell and the characters that I play reflect the world, which is the gay and lesbian community, in a way where we’re not asking a million questions around it. This is just how it should be."

Charlize Theron (2020), (Toni Anne Barson/WireImage/Getty Images)

How Charlize Theron Went From Stealing Bread To The Academy Awards

In an interview with the New York Times magazine in 2008, Theron spoke about why she came to be in America and the struggles she faced before making it big.

“I went to New York for three days to model, and then I spent a winter in New York in a friend’s windowless basement apartment. I was broke, I was taking class at the Joffrey Ballet, and my knees gave out,” she told the publication. “I realized I couldn’t dance anymore, and I went into a major depression. My mom came over from South Africa and said, ‘Either you figure out what to do next or you come home, because you can sulk in South Africa.’”

Theron’s mom, Gerda, reminded her daughter that she has always been interested in acting and bought Theron a one-way ticket to California.

Charlize Theron (2020), (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

It turns out that it was not just an interest of hers but her calling. “The first time I ever acted, it felt right, as if that’s what I’m supposed to do with my bones,” she said. But since she did not speak English in an American accent, she had some trouble with casting agents.

“Casting agents told me, ‘If you don’t learn to speak English, it’s not going to happen.' To this day, all my friends have the job of correcting me. They’ll tease me: the movie star just said 'were,' not 'was.'"

One of these mix-ups is heard during an interview with CBS Sunday Morning in 2011. “There were a time where I stole bread from a bread basket in a restaurant,” she said when explaining how broke she used to be. “Yeah, I put the bread in my bag. I cherish those moments. I cherish them.”

Charlize Theron (2020), (Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

According to Daily Mail, Theron was discovered by a talent agent who was standing next to her in line at the bank. The bank cashier had refused to let Theron cash a check, and she was throwing a tantrum when she caught the attention of the agent.

Soon after, Theron’s career took flight. To secure her role in "The Devil's Advocate" (1997), the actress had to audition six times. The Daily Mail reported that she stopped grooming herself and slept less just so she could fit the role of a haunted, haggard wife. It all proved to be worth it as the movie is now credited to be her break-out film. She won her first Academy Award in 2004 for her role in the 2003 film "Monster." 

“The dream was never this big,” she continued in the CBS interview. “The greatest thing that I have learned in my journey doing this, is that if you come in with your own agenda, and with your own ego and you try to kind of force something and control something, you cannot make a good movie.”

Becoming A U.S. Citizen While Still Remembering Her Roots

In 2007, after 13 years in the country, Theron became a naturalized U.S. citizen. “I am not a passive person. I feel like if I am going to be living here then I want to contribute to my community and I want to contribute to elections and I want to truly feel like I am part of it,” she said of her gaining citizenship. “I come from a country where there is an awareness for me every single day of how blessed I am.” 

In that same year, she started a charity called the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project. The goal of the charity is to reduce sexual violence and to educate the young about how to prevent the spread of HIV and AIDS.

“There is no way that you can take a trip to South Africa, and work with the kids that we work with, that you do not come home and you open your fridge and you realize circumstances somehow worked out for you,” she said.

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