Busy Philipps Shares Her 12-Year-Old Birdie Is Gay and Prefers They/Them Pronouns After Emotional Talk
By Rachel McRady
Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for Baby2Baby
Busy Philipps is opening up about a moving conversation she had with her 12-year-old child, Birdie, during the holidays. The 41-year-old actress shared the deeply personal story on the latest episode of her podcast, Busy Philipps Is Doing Her Best, noting that her eldest child is out and gay, and prefers they/them pronouns.
"So Birdie, my out kid, prefers they/them," Philipps said. "I f**k up sometimes, but I'm trying my best at that too."
Philipps shared that her family recently watched the new Pixar film, Soul, and afterwards she found Birdie in her room, lying on the ground in the dark and listening to Harry Styles' "Fine Line" on repeat.
"I had a real flash of myself as a preteen/teenager. So I laid down on the floor as well and I was like, 'Are you alright? Do you want to talk about anything?'" Philipps said. "And Birdie said, 'It's just, I feel like I'm alive but I'm not really living? You know? And I just want the living part to start.' And I got really emotional because I said, 'First off, welcome to being my daughter, but I want to say this to you because I wish someone had said this to me. This is living. You can't wait for it to start.'"
Philipps went on to tell Birdie that they shouldn't constantly be spending their life waiting to reach certain milestones or accomplishments. The conversation made Philipps reflect on the unusual year of 2020 and how it impacted her.
"I always lived my life waiting for the future and this year having all this s**t happen and being forced to stop and just sit with what my life is, I realized that I did waste so much time fantasizing about a thing, so many things that I thought were going to make me feel a different way... I had to face it and figure out how to sit still in it," she shared.
Philipps also told Birdie that they don't have to base their success on anyone else's model.
"I said to [them], 'The other thing I want to tell you that I wish I had known was you get to build your life however the f**k you want to and it doesn't have to look like anything you've ever seen or anything that's ever been modeled for you because maybe it doesn't exist," Philipps said. "You get to choose what will make you feel fulfilled and happy. It doesn't have to be any of these constructs that we've all been fed our entire lives. This is a different world that you get to f**king build.'"
Describing the conversation as "pretty intense," Philipps owned up to the fact that she's been struggling with publicly using Birdie's preferred pronouns.
"I said, you know Bird, I've been doing a bad job with the pronouns because Birdie said that they would like their pronouns to be they/them and I haven't been doing it because I have this public persona and I want Birdie to be in control of their own narrative and not have to answer to anybody outside of our friends and family if they don't want to," Philipps explained. "And then Bird was like, 'I don't give a f**k. You can talk about that I'm gay and out. You can talk about my pronouns. That would be cool with me. That's great."
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