by Michelle Ruiz– Vogue
Nicole Kidman seldom speaks about her two grown children with Tom Cruise—Isabella, 25, and Connor, 23, both of whom decided to live with their father and, like Cruise, practice Scientology, after the couple split in 2001. But promoting her new film, Boy Erased, in which Kidman plays the mother of a gay son (Lucas Hedges), has predictably sparked questions and prompted Kidman to break her silence on Isabella and Connor.
“They are adults,” Kidman told Australia’s Who magazine. “They are able to make their own decisions. They have made choices to be Scientologists, and as a mother, it’s my job to love them.”
In comments that would apply both to her role in the film and her own life, Kidman—who is also mom to two daughters, Sunday and Faith, with her husband, Keith Urban—went on to stress the importance of tolerance in mother-child relationships: “That’s what I believe—that no matter what your child does, the child has love, and the child has to know there is available love and I’m open here. I think that’s so important because if that is taken away from a child, to sever that in any child, in any relationship, in any family—I believe it’s wrong. So that’s our job as a parent, to always offer unconditional love.”
Her words are heartbreaking in the context of Kidman’s past statements about her children choosing to live with Cruise and to practice Scientology, which seems to have driven a wedge between them. (See the account from ex-Cruise friend and Scientology whistle-blower Leah Remini saying Isabella once referred to Kidman as a “fucking SP”—Scientology lingo for a “suppressive person” outside the religion.) Kidman told Who that she is very private about her eldest kids but is secure in the knowledge that being a mother is her “purpose”: “I know 150 percent that I would give up my life for my children.”