Halle Berry Says Love For Nahla is 'Real'

02/16/2009 at 12:00 PM ET
Bauer Griffin

Halle Berry is in love and she’s not afraid to tell the world. Completely head over heels for her daughter Nahla Ariela, Halle tells Essence magazine during her photo shoot that the profound feelings for her daughter are uncharted waters for the new mom. Sharing that it’s “a different kind of love” than those of the past, the 42-year-old reveals she would stop at nothing to protect her baby girl.

“I thought I loved before, but no, I was just playing around. This is like, what real love…I mean I would take a bullet for this child and think nothing of it.”

Despite almost 11 months having passed since the actress welcomed her first child with supermodel Gabriel Aubry, Halle’s amazement over her baby girl seems to grow stronger every day. Confessing “not a day goes by that I don’t learn something new about myself,” the proud mama is excited by the opportunity to relive her life through Nahla’s world. “I see everything for the second and third time,” says Halle, adding, “I get to recapture my childhood and the wonder of what life is all about.”

Source: Essence

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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dee on

My bestfriend talks the same way about her son. She calls her babysitter like three times a day from work.

Sarah on

I hate to be the negative one because it is soooo obvious how much Halle loves Nahla. But, sometimes I can’t help but wonder about her former step-daughter.

I’m not sure what happened between Eric and Halle that severed the relationship between Halle and India, so I can’t judge that. But, she used to talk publicly about how she loved India as if she were her own. The girl called her “Mom.” Halle said that the relationship between them couldn’t be more real if she had given birth to India herself. What now? Was Halle just “playing around” when she said that?

It’s fine if she feels that the love she had for her step-daughter wasn’t as intense or real as for her biological daughter, but I can’t imagine being India and reading an article where the woman I used to call “mom” say that the love she had before was somehow not real. I won’t judge Halle but I really think that she should put a little more thought into what she says to the media. Regardless of how things played out between Halle and Eric it just seems wrong to play with a kid’s emotions like that.

And once again, I admittedly do not know the intimate details of Halle and Eric’s divorce. It’s just my observation and opinion that Halle’s statements may hurt the feelings of the child she used to call her daughter.

Chicki on

Sarah I think your comment is a very valid one! I totally forgot about Halle’s relationship with India and in light of that she definitely should choose her words more carefully when discussing parenthood with the media. That said, of course a parent will feel differently about a biological child vs. a step child, but still I think India deserves a little more than that – even an acknowledgement would be appropriate.

g.rocks on

oh yes, i totally agree with Sarah! I do remember how she took in ndia as her own child because India’s mom had died! It really stood out with me because i though it was beautiful that Halle wanted to take the mother role with India! Halle has said if she never conceived that India was all she nedded! She felt like atrue mother to this girl! and when her and Eric split up she said that she would still be a mother to india! I would love to know what happened! my heart goes out to India! She is young to lose her biological mother! I hope India is doing good!

alice jane on

Sarah I’ve wondered ever since Halle and Eric split up what happened regarding the relationship between Halle and India…. For some reason I was under the impression that Halle had adopted India, but I think I’m wrong. I do remember Halle saying how she considered India her own, so yeah, I do wonder about that still…

Anna on

I think it’s difficult to know what she actually said and what the media made up about her at that time. It is also very possible that her ex husband was the one that severed all ties between Halle and India.

She is an example of a celebrity that does keep her child out of the limelight, she proves it is possible not be photographed with your child every day.

Lauren on

Sarah, I completely agree with you. Every time I read an article about Halle and Nahla, the first person I think about is India. Halle never legally adopted her, but she talked about doing so and said India called her “Mom.” She even said after she and Eric split up that India used to call her up to ask her about her supposed boyfriends all the tabloids were talking about, and they were photographed several times together as well. All of a sudden, all of that was over. Yes, it’s possible Eric tried to tear them apart, but if she really cared enough, something tells me she could have and would have found a way to make the relationship work.

After all her comments about loving India as her own, her comments about Nahla, nice as they are, really rub me the wrong way. India’s biological mother is dead; Halle is the only mother figure she’s ever known. And the thought that she has to read about how her former “Mom” is experiencing a love she never knew before with her biological daughter doesn’t sit well with me.

Elle on

Sarah you are right, she did legally adopt India.

Sarah on

Anna, unfortunately I saw an interview on t.v. a few years ago where Halle herself said that India calls her mom and that she loved India as if she were her own. That wasn’t an article that could be edited; the words came out of Halle’s mouth.

She allowed a motherless child to call her mom and that’s a very very big deal. So, whether or not it was Eric’s fault for separating Halle and India, Halle still has a responsibility to make neutral comments about first time parenthood to the media.

Drea on

While I agree that it’s sad that Halle couldn’t keep in touch with India (if she hasn’t),her divorce from Eric Benet was very harsh with the rumors and media spotlight. I believe India is about 16 or 17 now, so if she wants to someday be in contact with Halle she can do so as soon as she is of age regardless of what her father thinks. And let’s remember – India has had stable female figures in her life because Eric’s mother is very much involved in her upbringing as is his sister.

I do however think Halle’s statement, “I thought I loved before, but no, I was just playing around” would be extremely hurtful to India if she ever read those words. Hopefully Halle just didn’t consider this possibility and connection. Anyway…..when are we going to see some new pics of Nahla?🙂

CelebBabyLover on

Elle- No, she never did adopt India. I think she was in the process, but it was never completed because of the divorce or something. Oh, and from what I’ve read, it WAS Eric who severed the ties between Halle and India. He apparently also tried to “use” India during the divorce proceedings.

Fevvers on

I accept taht I am probably being a total wet blanket here, but WHO in their RIGHT MIND takes a bullet for someone and thinks NOTHING of it? Meaningless hyperbole….

Sara on

Fewers, the answer to your question is a mother, something you obviously are not.

liAnn on

Fevvers ???????
do you mean Halle?

Nymph_of_oasis on

yes, i ithink you are right, sarah. Although, i adore Halle very much, sometimes, i also thought about India. She is of the same age of me. And yes, if i am india, and i read all those things that she said, i will also feel like betrayed or my be i will be a little angry and sad.

Destiny on

I took Halle’s comment regarding how she “played around” before not to be about her love for India, but about her love for others period. First of all I think that it was a poor choice of words. I think that her love for all others in her past was a game to her, but I think she was just trying to describe how ‘different’, perhaps unconditional, her love for Nahla and how she’s never felt quite this way in the past. I don’t think she was referring to just her love for India though, althoughit may seem that way. But then again, I’m not Halle so I could be wrong.

From what I’ve seen in the last few months, India is doing quite well. I’ve seen a YouTube video that Eric put out of him and India singing together in their home. He also mentioned that India is singing on one of the songs on his upcoming album. This video was beautiful in that it really showed the relationship that the two of them have. Eric loves his daughter very much, and if she has no one else and she has that, she is very fortunate. But as someone else said, she probably does have family members around her, some of which I’m sure are women. And just yesterday I saw a photo of Eric, India and Eric’s girlfriend at a recent event. I’m sure that India is doing just fine, with or without Halle in her life.

As for Halle and India’s relationship, whoever said that Halle could find a way to have a relationship with India even if Eric didn’t approve or has tried to severe their relationship, has never had to go through that and has no clue what it’s like. In a situation like that, where the biological parent wants to severe the relationship, in my opinion, it’s better to walk away. It complicates things so much more and can harm the child more than if she just walks away letting her know that she loves her and will be there for her however and whenever she can. Now I don’t know if THAT is their situation, NO ONE on this site knows what the situation actually is, so although you have every right to give an opinion about how Halle should handle HER relationship with India, you are doing so without having all of the facts. For all we know Eric has told India not have contact with her, or India herself may not want to because of her father, or Halle and India may talk every single day. We just don’t know. And Halle’s love for Nahla has absolutely NOTHING to do with her and India’s relationship or her love for India. If she said that she loved India, I’m sure she did. That was new to her at that time and I’m sure very special to her. But becoming a bilogical mother for the first time, and knowing that no one can take that child from you because they feel like, is something new and special to Halle too. All this woman is doing is expressing her love for her child and she should be able to do so without anyone’s objections.

Destiny on


I DON’T think that her love for all others in her past was a game to her, but I think she was just trying to describe how ‘different’, perhaps unconditional, her love for Nahla and how she’s never felt quite this way in the past.

Sarah on

Destiny, I do not dispute that it may very well have been Eric who cut off contact between Halle and India. But the fact remains that Halle took it upon herself to allowed India to call her “mom” and declare to the world that India couldn’t be more her child if she had given birth to her. Those are really strong words to say about anyone, especially a child who has lost her biological mother.

I truly hope that India is doing well and that she isn’t negatively effected by any of this. I’ve seen pictures of her with her dad too, and she seems happy enough. But, Halle created a lifelong responsibility when she decided to take on the role of mother. So, even if she can’t be physically near her, she should be aware that her words carry weight. If she truly felt as though she loved India as her own then no time, distance, or legal document could ever change how she felt about her. And, if she doesn’t feel as though her love for India is as strong as her love for Nahla, then maybe she shouldn’t let that be known to India.

Destiny on

We are too hard on celebrities. We look at the them through a microscope. I would hate to have thousands of people, if not millions, to weigh my EVERY public word and action. I do agree, as I said before, that it was probably a poor choice of words because there is a possiblity that India could read it and take it personally. But I don’t think it was a direct hit at India. It wasn’t meant for her and I think even she knows that. Halle was probably asked a question regarding being a new mother, and she simply responded about her love for Nahla. I don’t think India crossed her mind at that moment because at that moment, her mind was on the joy Nahla has brought into her life. And again, what she says about Nahla has nothing to do with how she feels about India. India is not Nahla. I’m sure India understands that. So though it may have been a poor choice of words, we know that she didn’t say what she said to intentionally hurt India. And hopefully India knows that as well so hopefully she isn’t taking it personal. I just think that some are probably more offended by what Halle said than India probably will be, IF she even reads it.

And the biggest responsibility here belongs to Eric. He brought this woman into his life, and his childn’s life, promised to love her, and then cheated on her (it’s been said many times by Halle). He messed that relationship up for his daughter, not Halle. After being hurt, AGAIN, when you were promised to be loved, she should be free to live her life and not be criticized for being happy with her new family, and expressing that love to whomever. Again, she’s not intentionally trying to hurt India so give her a break.

Anyway, be offended if you want to be offended (I certainly don’t want to take that from you), even though it has nothing to do with you. I’m going to be happy for Halle for finally having a man to love her the way she deserves and for having the baby that she’s always wanted. As I was very happy to see India in the video with her dad where she also looked very happy.

l on

Nobody here thinks that Halle’s comment was directly directed at India. But with making it such a general statement it automatically included her. And that her former stepdaughter obviously didn’t even cross Halle’s mind can’t be really taken as an excuse. Not after Halle repeatedly called her a daughter. Sure India is not Nahla, Halle has made this very clear. And I can’t imagine that India wouldn’t be hurt if she ever hears this. You’re right that Eric might have the biggest responsibility, but that doesn’t take away the responsibility that still lies on Halle’s shoulders as a former stepmother.
Nobody is trying to take away the joy and happiness Halle is experiencing now with her new family. But thinking of people and feeling for them, especially when they are still children/teenagers like India here, is not a case of “having something to do with you” or not, it’s simply an act of empathy.

Fevvers on

ooops…read it again…and I must just have been sleep deprived. I always get a bit grumpy and cynical without enough sleep!

Rachelsun on

You people are ridiculous. You have made yourselves Halle’s judge, jury and deemed her guilty. She has a better life than any of you will have. Eric Benet is India’s parent and not Halle. She did not adopt her. Unless you were there or have seen the divorce papers it would have been his decision until India is 18 to allow her to see Halle or not. Halle may have felt it was too hard on India to place her in the middle because of course her loyalties would lie w/ her father. She only knew Halle for 2 years. Give me a break.
I am so happy for Halle and Gabriel and Nahla. They are a lovely family.

Sarah on

“She has a better life than any of you will have.”

Wow, um Rachelsun, this is a discussion board and everyone here has a right to their opinion. There is no need to insult all of the posters. Making personal attacks may not be the best way to get your point across. Posters were feeling empathy for a kid who may have lost not one, but two mothers. Is that really such a problem for you?

Also, there are a few things about which you were mistaken. India did not know Halle for only two years. Halle’s marriage to Eric lasted four years, so that your statement make absolutely no sense. And, Halle has been quoted saying early on in the marriage that she was the only mother India knew. She said that India had been calling her mommy before she even married Eric. She also said that she saw India as her child. She’s the one that made it sound that this wasn’t a regular step-parent/step-child relationship. This would not even be an issue if Halle hadn’t said those things to the media.

g!na on

Thank you sarah, for your last post! Everyone was really concerned about India who did lose two mothers!

ABG on

Benet’s behavior was very hurtful to the relationship between his daughter and Ms. Berry. Benet even admitted he had more than one affair. Obviously, “HE” wasn’t concerned about the consequences.
Perhaps he tried to use his daughter as a bargining chip after his affairs came to light. He removed his daughter from their home as it was his right. However,he also attemped to break a prenuptial agreement. Ms Berry tried most likely for his daughter’s sake to give the marriage a second chance BUT she chouldn’ TRUST him anymore. Keeping a relationship
with his daughter meant having to deal with Benet and it would have been extremely diffulcult to do so. As it has been said his daughter being of a “tender” age has loyalties only to him. As she gets older and matures perhaps she will understand the postion her father put the family in and the hard choices that were made.

Judith on

What a touching and heartfelt article.. Reminds me the feelings I had when my children were little. Nahla is a very loved baby..

ajay on

I honestly believe you guys are making too much out of one statement. You guys are placing Halle on a pedestal and judging her by her response to an interview question. The lady has a personal life no one knows anything about which may include contact with India. Who’s to say she doesn’t see or talk to India? I didn’t hear or read that. You guys are reading into her thoughts and actions.

Halle has a right to be excited about her baby. That doesn’t mean she doesn’t love India.

koreanjennygirl on

you know, on one hand i think there is absolutely nothing wrong with halle shares her joy with world as a new mum, also feeling is not something can be forced! that said, it would still be nice is halle showed some sensitivity with what she says, as eventhough one cant control their heart, they can definitely control their mouth!in halle defence, none of us know aht exactly happened in their relaionthip beside people involved, and none of them are talking, still , regardless of what happened , even if india were hurtful to halle ( an worst scenario assumption only), if halle truely loved india, she would still show some sensitivity.

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