I Don’t Want Charlotte to Be Spoiled: Chelsea Clinton on Bringing Up Her Daughter to Have Her ‘Own Dreams’

09/09/2015 at 03:25 PM ET

As a child, former First Daughter Chelsea Clinton was taught that with great privilege, comes great responsibility.

Now, as a new mom to baby Charlotte, Clinton is eager to pass that lesson on to her own daughter.

That includes making sure Charlotte “realizes how blessed she is — how blessed we all are,” Clinton tells PEOPLE of her famous (and, now, famously quite wealthy) family.

“I think another part of it is ensuring that she, from an early age, is engaged in what my grandmother called ‘expanding the circle of blessings,’ ” adds Clinton. “You know, in the ways in which kids can engage — whether that’s in a food drive, in a clothing drive or volunteering in a soup kitchen. I think all of that is fundamentally important to ensuring that Charlotte can grow up to be the person that we certainly hope she will be, with empathy but also a real sense of responsibility — that [the phrase] ‘To whom much is given, much is expected’ is part of her foundation.”

Chelsea Clinton Daughter Charlotte
Lenny Abbot/Splash News/Corbis

Clinton is already doing everything she can to introduce Charlotte — who will celebrate her first birthday on Sept. 26 — to the ways of the world. The mother and daughter duo listen to the radio together in the morning and Clinton even talks to Charlotte about the news. (“She currently agrees with me on everything,” the self-proclaimed “vice-chair/champion of all things Bill, Hillary and Chelsea” quips. “I doubt that will be the case for long.”)

“But I think it’s important to talk to kids,” says Clinton, who spoke with PEOPLE about the launch of her first book, It’s Your World: Get Informed, Get Inspired & Get Going, a primer for middle-schoolers on how to get involved on issues like poverty, wildlife conservation and healthcare.

“Partly because the kids that I talk to and listen to are grappling with big questions in the world and want to know more about what’s happening and want to know more about what they can do to make a difference on the issues that they’re already caring about. Which is another reason that I wrote the book It’s Your World.”

Another big inspiration for the book was her parents, former President Bill Clinton and potential future president Hillary Clinton.

“I was always encouraged to engage in the world, to be informed — the first thing I learned how to read was the newspaper — but also encouraged that being informed was the first step toward making a difference,” she explains. “And I think, absolutely, the choices that my parents made in their own lives, but also the choices they encouraged me to make, still have a tremendous impact on me — particularly now that I’m a mom, as I think about how to give that same sense of empowerment and also responsibility to Charlotte.”

Much like her parents strove to protect her from the public eye, Clinton hopes to shield her own daughter from scrutiny and harm — starting with a refusal to share photos of Charlotte on social media (“It hasn’t felt right,” Clinton says) — but she also wants Charlotte to experience all the world has to offer.

“[I’m] focusing on how to ensure that Charlotte has every chance that I would hope for every child: to develop her own dreams and identity and path, absent scrutiny and haranguing from the outside — and part of that is helping her understand what’s real and what’s just noise,” Clinton explains.

Chelsea Clinton Hillary daughter Charlotte

For more from Chelsea Clinton, pick up the latest issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.

— Tierney McAfee with reporting by Sandra Sobieraj Westfall

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Showing 21 comments

AMN on

Chelsea looks like her biological father which is not Bill Clinton

Stacey McRae on

Too bad her Mother is such an evil woman. Chelsea fell FAR from the family tree.

Godiva on

Aw, poor little baby!
Your grandma is going to prison, Hon, nothing for it, so sorry.

Alyssa on

Chelsea turned out to be such a poised and intelligent woman. I’m sure she is a wonderful mother!! Her precious daughter will soon have two grandparents that were President of the USA – that is just incredible and awesome.

Maria on

Good luck with that, look at her grandparents who have NO boundries. Crooks.

Sky on

She’s got her mama’s legs
Poor thing

Sky on

Chelsea has those Hillary legs …..

D on

Egads!! She looks terrible!!!

Mellie on

How refreshing. So many celebrities overdo for their children, give them way too much and teach them nothing. The daughter of a former President does not want her daughter to be spoiled, wants her daughter to learn about the world in a positive way. I am very impressed.

Guest on

Hilary is slipping in the polls every day. No way will she be President. She needs to go home and be a grandma now.

Gort1 on

Wow. Rude comments. Hey D…how did you look 2 days after having a baby? Or are you a man so you have no idea about childbirth?

Virginia Bergman on

I’m wondering if it’s possible to comment online without resorting to crude, vulgar personal attacks.

Glassman on

Yeah Chelsea has Hilary’s legs lol.

Texas Lady on

Good grief, what a bunch of nasty, woman-hating people posting here. This woman is an intelligent, accomplished person and she’s saying she doesn’t want to spoil her child. Take your Hillary hate elsewhere, trolls.

Brooke on

So many hateful people on here, it’s a shame really. Chelsea is a remarkable young woman and was raised very well. And to the person who said that she’s got a different biological father, you are a flipping moron. Go back to your right wing conspiracy hole.


People can be so mean. I wish her family well. Any time a new healthy baby is born it is a time of joy and happiness. This world seems to be filled with hateful judgmental self centered people.

Caramel Coffee on

copycat Kate Middleton’s style after George was born , sickening

Caramel Coffee on

and now both have a Charlotte , lame

Caramel Coffee on

blue dress shows no original style , obvious copycat WANNABE

Anonymous on

For a former first Daughter, glad she is grounded, not act like spoiled. Congrulatons.

today nambili on

looking smart