Theron says she is raising son as a girl
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Seven-year-old Jackson was adopted as a baby and was introduced to the world as a boy.
Then photographs appeared of Jackson wearing skirts and dresses and with long braided hair. Tongues have been wagging and Hollywood wondered just what on earth was Theron up to.
But in a recent interview, Jackson’s mother revealed all.
“Yes, I thought she was a boy, too,” Charlize told the Mail online “Until she looked at me when she was three years old and said: ‘I am not a boy!’” Theron’s other child, August, was also adopted and is a girl.
“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,” the Benoni-born actress added.
She said that her mother Gerda, had an influence in how she is raising Jackson.
“You can blame my mom for the fact I don’t know any better! You know, 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.
“I was taught by my mom that you have to speak up; you have to be able to know that, when this life is over, you’ll have lived the truth you’re comfortable with, and that nothing negative can come from that,” she added.
Theron’s troubled childhood has been well-documented. She grew up in Crystal Park, east of Johannesburg, and her alcoholic and abusive father would regularly beat her mother.
Then when Theron was 15, her father came home in a rage, carrying a gun threatening to kill, both her and Gerda.
Instead Gerda shot him dead, in an act that was ruled self-defence.
“When my father passed away and, all of a sudden, we had a huge debt of money that we owed, and every bank was after her, she took care of it. It didn’t happen overnight - it took her five years - but she did do it,” Theron said.
Following her father’s death, Theron’s mother took over his construction business.
“The greatest gift my mom ever gave me was the sight of her putting on her heels and her power suit and going into a board meeting with eight guys and just running the show.
“I never had any fears about being a woman. It wasn’t until I was out on my own and in my early 20s, that I even realised that women are not respected in every field,” Theron said.
For now Theron is single, having split from actor Sean Penn, four years ago.
“Right now, I don’t go into dates jumping that far ahead and thinking: ‘Huh, can I marry this guy and is he going to be good with my kids and is my mom going to like him?’
“I tend to treat it very much like: ‘Let’s see if you are a good friend and see where this goes.’
“Being a successful, strong and independent woman, can make lasting relationships harder,” she said.