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Will Smith Reveals His Approach To Parenting Teenagers On 'Ellen'

"Teenagers should be an affliction," the actor said.

If you read or seen any interview with Jaden Smith, it's hard to escape the conclusion that he must be a handful for his parents Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith. The 17-year-old actor and rapper is precocious far beyond his years, without a doubt. But he's also pretty far out there. He recently compared himself to Galileo, for example, and committed to disappearing from public life in 10 years in a GQ profile.

Will confirmed our suspicions in an interview with Ellen DeGeneres on Thursday. He contrasted his current relationship with his 23-year-old son Trey to the never-ending turmoil of raising teenagers. 

"Teenagers should be an affliction," Will joked. "Like, 'Hey, Will, how you doin?' 'Man, I got teenagers. Simplex 2, man, simplex 2.' It takes everything you have to raise teenagers."

DeGeneres suggested that the Will and Jada's approach to raising teenagers might not be totally normal, though, saying that the two were unusually supportive of their children. Smith agreed. 

"Because we're both artists, we decided a long time ago that it's sort of better to flow with what people are naturally more than what our egos need them to be," the actor explained. "So we really just try to find the things that they're good at and support those things rather than forcing them ..."

"Jaden loves math, and Willow is more of a reader," he continued. "So we kinda just support those things."

The Smith kids are certainly flourishing -- so their parents must be doing something right. Even if it's not always easy. 

 

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