Julia Roberts Talks Raising Her Kids: 'Some People Confuse Unconditional Love With Spoiling'
By Liz Calvario
Julia Roberts may be America's sweetheart and an Oscar winner, but she's also a devoted mother of three who knows the value of discipline.
The 50-year-old actress talks about raising her kids -- 12-year-old twins Hazel and Phinnaeus and 10-year-old son Henry -- in the December issue of Good Housekeeping and how nothing is "stronger than gentleness."
"I think some people confuse unconditional love with spoiling. None of my kids would think I have a problem with that distinction," Roberts expresses. "I do love them unconditionally, and I try, when they do something wrong, to say, 'This doesn’t change the amount of love in this house for you, but you've got to do your homework.' Because I think that also makes a child feel safe."
The Pretty Woman star also knows the value of being a kind person and how we can all work to be better humans in general.
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"I think we need to stop criticizing. Honestly, it’s become a sport -- at lunch, online, wherever. 'I can’t believe the way she’s wearing her hair,' or 'He looks so…' It’s all so petty, and we’re grown-up people," she says. "There have to be more interesting things to note about one another…and I’m talking to myself here too, because I find the sarcasm and the criticism and stuff like that very humorous, but there’s a time when you go, 'Well, why don’t I say all the true and kind things.'"
Roberts will next be seen in Wonder, an emotional story about August Pullman, a boy with facial differences, played by Jacob Tremblay, who enters fifth grade and attends a mainstream elementary school for the first time. Roberts plays August's mother, Isabel.
"It was getting tricky in my house to have a nighttime chapter book everyone would like, so I bought Wonder, and I could not put it down," Roberts reveals. "I read it to the three kids, and they were all as knocked out as I had been. I remember calling my agent after I read the book and saying, 'I’ll play the mom!'"