Columnist Veronica Clark: Mum's the word, Madonna
Madonna is currently embroiled in a custody battle with Guy Ritchie over their son, Rocco. The 15 year old came to London on tour with his mum, but then decided he didn't want to go home.
Instead of trying to reason with the teenager, Madonna opened it up into a public spat over social media. As a mum, I know (and most of you will too) that the way to deal with a stroppy teen is to use reverse psychology. What you mustn’t do, under any circumstances, is spit out your dummy (you’re the adult, after all) and make demands. Yet, Madonna, who is obviously used to getting her own way, has done the latter. The result is Rocco’s decided to stick two proverbial fingers up to her and stay with his dad. This has infuriated Madonna, who has reacted by bringing in top lawyers to make Rocco return to the States. I’m sorry, love, but if you order teenagers to do anything, the chances are they won’t. Instead of acting like the adult, Madonna, who lest we forget is 57 years old, has taken to social media to sling mud in the general direction of her ex-husband. What she doesn’t realise is with her own childish behaviour she’s playing straight into his hands. You see, the more she seeks to belittle him, the more Rocco will stick up for his father. It’s no secret that Madonna is a strict mum and all-round perfectionist. But a child is not a commodity, it’s a human being. They crave love and affection. What they don’t want to be is caught up in the crossfire of their parents' relationship or be used as a pawn to score points. Madonna’s latest swipe was to post an obscene drawing of an overweight woman sitting on a man’s face with the caption: ‘Knowledge is power.’ She also thought it appropriate to upload a half-naked shot of herself, holding a whip and wearing rubber pants. Stay classy, lady. The judge, who is overseeing the custody case at the High Court in London, said it was ‘highly unfortunate and deeply regrettable’ that the couple had to resort to lawyers. His words echoed those of a New York judge who said it was ‘extremely troubling’ the pair could not settle their differences privately. Exactly. But she refuses to give up and claims that 15 year-old Rocco has been illegally retained by his father. She’s even launched a case under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. Meanwhile, lawyers for Ritchie argue Rocco is settled at school in England and should remain with his father. Madonna accused Ritchie of teaching Rocco that obeying court orders ‘was not important’. I think it’s more to do with fact she feels she’s losing grip of her son. But if Rocco wanted to be with her then he would be. Also, Guy Ritchie has maintained a dignified silence throughout. This alone speaks volumes about the man. As a mother, you have to accept that as your children become adults they are old enough to make their own decisions. If Madonna continues to hound her son, then she runs the risk of driving him away for good. As parents, they should both sit down and ask Rocco where he would like to live. At 15 years-old, he’s old enough to make his own decision. If that doesn’t go in Madonna’s favour then she needs to learn to put up and shut up.