“If I Had Kids, My Kids Would Hate Me”: Oprah On Forgoing Motherhood To Follow Her Dreams

December 12, 2013  |  

Oprah Winfrey is really doing it big out here, because even though she covered The Hollywood Reporter with Lupita Nyong’o, Octavia Spencer and other leading ladies getting Oscar buzz, she’s covering the magazine again as part of their “Power 100” list. We already knew that she had absolutely no interest in marrying her long-time love, Stedman Graham, but in the issue, Winfrey decided to elaborate on why she never really had an interest in having kids either.

“If I had kids, my kids would hate me. They would have ended up on the equivalent of the Oprah show talking about me; because something [in my life] would have had to suffer and it would’ve probably been them.”

Winfrey told THR that she has actually felt this way for a very long time, dating back to when she was a young lady trying to follow her dreams while her friends, including Gayle King, were picking out names for their future children.

“Gayle [now a mother of two] was the kind of kid who, in seventh grade home ec class, was writing down her name and the names of her children. While she was having those kind of daydreams, I was having daydreams about how I could be Martin Luther King.”

This isn’t the first time that Oprah has talked about motherhood in such a way. The Queen of Talk told Piers Morgan in 2011 that after suffering years of abuse, she wound up pregnant at the age of 14. Oprah was extremely worried about this because her father had told her when she went to live with him after learning of her pregnancy (but had been keeping it a secret) that, “I would rather see a daughter of mine floating down the Cumberland River … than to bring shame on this family and the indecency of an illegitimate child.” Sadly, the child died, but Oprah says that the loss was something of a call for her to be ambitious and to do everything she could to improve her life. It was “my second chance.”

“So I went back to school, and nobody knew. Because had anybody known at that time, I wouldn’t have been able to be head of student council. I wouldn’t have been able to be speaking champion in forensics. … I wouldn’t have been chosen as one of the two teenagers in the state of Tennessee to go to the White House conference on youth. None of those things would have happened, and the entire trajectory of my life would have been different.”

We can always appreciate Oprah’s honesty, right? Let us know what you think about what she had to say in The Hollywood Reporter below.

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