The actress speaks out on being a "perfect" mother.
It’s not easy living up to the “Best Mom” coffee mug. Not even for Viola Davis.
“When you have a child, you want to be a perfect mother. You feel like you have the absolute plan to be a perfect mother — and then you make a mistake, and we all make mistakes,” Davis tells PEOPLE at the world premiere of Custody at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York on Sunday.
In Custody, Davis stars as a judge presiding over a case brought on when a teacher notices cuts and bruises on the kids of a single mother.
“We all at some point lock our kid in a car by accident or lose our kid in the mall for 30 seconds or more,” says Davis. “I know one girl who’s a fantastic mother, [but] she lost her daughter in an aquarium for 30 minutes.”
Davis—who is mother to 4 year-old daughter Genesis, whom she adopted as a newborn in 2011, and stepmom to two children from husband Juilan Tennon’s previous relationship—has experienced first hand that there’s no such thing as the perfect parent.
“You have those moments: exhaustion, the stress of having an exuberant child, and you don’t want to be judged by your worst mistakes,” she says. “It’s a part of life, and it’s a part of what makes us who we are.”
Both Davis and her husband are producers of the film. She was sent the script a couple of years ago by writer and director James Lapine and was hooked.
“I did the movie because it’s an indictment and also an exposing of a big issue in our culture,” adds Davis. “I wanted to be a part of that.”
WANT MORE FROM ESSENCE? Subscribe to our daily newsletter for the latest in hair, beauty, style and celebrity news.
You may like
Get The Essence Newsletter and Special Offers delivered to your inbox!