Charlotte Church Laments Tabloid Coverage of Children

10/24/2010 at 05:00 PM ET
Dave Hogan/Getty

Songstress Charlotte Church says her patience with tabloids has begun to wane now that daughter Ruby Megan, 3, and son Dexter Lloyd, 21 months, are part of the story.

“It’s really tough and … it’s never bothered me so much in the past,” she told BBC Radio’s Jamie and Louise show.

“It’s because the children are involved, it’s because they’re getting worse and worse — there’s less and less truth in it they can pretty much say whatever they want.”

All the same, Church admits she and former flame Gavin Henson invited the coverage after the births of their children. Posing for photographs as a family was a strategic decision, however, she insists.

“We didn’t want the clamor of the photographers trying to get the first photo because that would have been unsafe,” she explains. “We put all the money in trust for our children. That’s the only time we ever kind of really courted the press so to speak.”

Although she recently split from Henson, Church, 24, says she has help in her best friend, who acts as a live-in nanny.

Managing her busy career — Back to Scratch, her sixth studio album, is available now — with two small children is “quite tough” but Church singles out an ability to “be efficient” as the secret to her success.

“I think as long as … you think ahead, plan ahead and try and schedule things carefully then it’s okay, it’s not too bad,” she muses.

“When I’m working then I’m working flat out trying to fit as much in as I can while I’m away from the children,” she continues. “Then as soon as I go back I’ve got my house to clean, clothes to wash, kids to feed, so it’s kind of non-stop.”

FILED UNDER: News , Parenting

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Mia on

Not a good pic of her-she looks likes she’s either really tired or high on something.

But on topic-there really should be strict laws on what is written about children + or paps laws in general.

ELO on

Oh my goodness! I hardly recognized her. I haven’t seen her in so long, I was still picturing her as a little girl. I actually didn’t even know she had children.

Jen on

I recognized her immediately and she has every right to be pissed. i would be. she is a single parent even though she has a nanny, i would expect her to be slightly frazzled. Give the lady a break.

Shannon on

I think she looks great, just very mature for her age. It’s great they put the money into a trust for the children.

Alex on

She doesn’t get constantly followed by cameras, here in the UK there is not much interest in her children, even during the split. I appreciate entirely what she is saying in general, but she is not a Beckham or a Jolie-Pitt. I would say on balance, Charlotte has a pretty good ride in the press.

Maggie on

Like she points out, she invited this stuff in when they sold the photos after the birth of the kids. She loved the attention when she was being paid for it, but now that the interest has waned and the money has stopped rolling in, it’s suddenly an issue. She brought it on herself.

The children, however, never asked for it, and I agree that there needs to be laws regarding paps and kids.

MiB on

I don’t really know much about Charlotte Church, but I was under the impression that she at least used to live in a village in Wales when the children were born, so I think that has something to do with the limited exposure to paparazzi. But I do think she is right in that many celebrities have to chose how to introduce their children to the media in a safe way in order not to be besieged by paps wanting to get the first picture, whether they chose to send a picture to the press like Salma Hayek did, stand on the steps of the hospital like Sarah Jessica Parker did with James Wilkie, sell the pictures for charity like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt or sell them and start a trust fund for the children like Charlotte Church, it’s all about what you are comfortable with (or the least uncomfortable with) and about the safety of the child/children.

I know someone will bring up Naomi Watts who just let the paps have a sneak peak of her son when she was sitting at a café, or Halle Berry, Nicole Kidman or Sandra Bullock whose children we didn’t see for months. But have you thought about that maybe Naomi Watts’ home wasn’t under siege when Sasha was born (and let’s face it, who wants to upset Liev Schreiber?) and Halle Berry has admitted not leaving the house with Nahla for months after she was born because she was afraid of the paparazzi, Nicole Kidman already had 15 years of practise in keeping her children out of the spotlight and Sandra Bullock apparently took to an almost sting like operation in order to avoid the paparazzi (which was helped by the fact that no one knew she had adopted).

I have seen both paparazzi and friendly fans in action, and while both groups are perfectly fine in moderation, and can be totally charming on their own. I once had a paparazzo help me get the stroller up a flight of stairs, he wasn’t interested in the children unless they were with their mother or her considerably more famous co actor and respected that I as her nanny was not interested in telling him anything that might interest him. But there were many other paparazzi and fans who really activated my flight instinct, not because they were unfriendly or agressive, but because there were so many of them at the same time. After all, the first picture is the one that gives the paparazzo the big buck, not the second, the third or the hundredandfifth (unless they are spectacular in themselves).

It is very difficult to know what the preassure from the paparazzi would have been like if she had chosen to go another route, it is quite possible that no one would have cared for the children at all, but it is also possible that the paparazzi would have attempeted to break in to their home (like they have done with the Jolie-Pitts), caused accidents (like with Nicole Richie if I remember correctly), besieged the childrens schools (Violet Afflek and Maddox Jolie-Pitt) and followed them down the isles at the super market (like they have with Jennifer Garner). The truth is Maggie, it is impossible to say that “She brought it on herself”, because no one knows what would have happened if she had done otherwise.

Now I’ll hand in my essay before it turns into a novel, but before I do, I urge everyone to think about what you would do if you were Jennifer Garner or Halle Berry.

Georgina on

MiB I do agree with you, I think in posing for the pictures, or even taking them and sending them into the magazines, your choosing the lessor of two evils. Also Gavin Henson is quite famous and an interest to the welsh population because he was their rugby sweetheart for a period of time. That meant like the jolie-pitts or beckhams it was two famous people who have had a baby/babies.

She has tried to keep them out of the line light. They live in wales in a small village, not in Cardiff or London. The paps do seem to get pictures of the children when they’re walking to the shops, the number of pictures that have been in the gossip magazines of charlotte and ruby either going in or out of a supermarket is huge. Why do they need to document the fact that charlotte church eats food?

CelebBabyLover on

Georgina- At the risk of sounding like a total nut case, I think part of the reason that Charlotte Church (or whichever celeb they’re following at the time) is eating is so interesting to the paps is that they (just like we the public are sometimes guilty of doing) forget that celebs do have a life outside of Hollywood, and that they are just people like the rest of us.

They may have a lot of money and therefore access to a lot of things that we don’t, but when it comes right down to it, celebs really aren’t all that different from us. They go out to eat, they shop for groceries, they get sick, they injure themselves, they have to go to the bathroom, they get dirty and need to take baths, etc (ugh, I’m starting to sound like US Weekly’s “Celebs, They’re Just like US section!).

It’s a little bit like how a lot of little kids think that their teachers live at school, or their pastor lives at church. Although as adults we obviously know that actors don’t, for example, live on movie sets, we just get so used to seeing them in movies or all glammed up on the red carpet that we tend to forget that they’re really just people like the rest of us. 🙂

MiB on

Well said celebbabylover!

Tess on

I don’t have sympathy for her re the press. She sold pics of her kids to the magazines, yet suddenly now the press is intrusive. She can’t have it both ways.

Maggie – great post.