Samuel L. Jackson knows the power of parenthood.
The actor and his wife, LaTanya Richardson, have a daughter, Zoe. Over the years, he’s shared glimpses into his family life in various interviews.
In honor of his birthday, here are seven quotes about parenthood from Jackson.
On Being A Present Father
“My dad was an absentee dad, so it was always important to me that I was part of my daughter’s life, and she deserved two parents, which is part of the rationale behind us staying married for 30 years. Because everybody has a chance to say, ‘Fuck it,’ and walk away, you know? But you also have a chance to say, ‘OK, fuck it, I’m sorry.’ Even if you’re not.”
On His Family Values
“I met my wife, LaTanya Richardson, also an actor, at college and we share the same values. Our daughter, Zoe, is like us in that she has a strong will, work ethic and sense of self. She works as a producer for a sports channel. Coming from a background where we’ve had to fight for our rights, LaTanya and I care very deeply about civil and human rights and feel that it is important to provide an education for the less fortunate and that’s why we recently set up our own charitable foundation.”
On Cursing In Front Of Kids
“I never edited my speech with my daughter and I talked to her like I talked to my friends, but she could not answer me back the same way. I recall hearing when she was three talking to her friends and saying ‘F**k you.’ She understood the context of different words. We took her to a wedding once and I was asking her about some food and she replied, ‘What is that s**t?’”
On Bedtime Stories
“I remember all those times when I did read to my daughter when she was that age and everybody tells you reading stories will put kids to sleep, but it never works. It didn’t in my house. I did say ‘go the fuck to sleep’ to her a lot, and I think at some point she would look at me when I would come into her room, and she would say, ‘Go the fuck to sleep, Daddy?’ and I would say, ‘Yeah, go the fuck to sleep.’”
On Battling Addiction
“I credit [my wife] because she could have just taken Zoe and walked out and been done with me. But she didn’t. That’s a greater love than I will ever know. Because I don’t know that I would’ve done that.”
On Social Media Lessons From His Daughter
“My daughter had to teach me that I don’t respond to trolls. But if somebody says something really nasty about me, I retweet it and let my followers handle it.”
On The Power Of Family
“The other two people that challenged me on a regular basis are my foundation and support, my daughter Zoe and my wife LaTanya. The two women that actually found me passed out on the floor after I left somebody’s bachelor party and put me in rehab the next day. And supported me and pushed me and give me a reason to get up and go and chase it day after day after day.”