Raising kids is no easy task. You often hear the term “it takes a village to raise a child,” but unfortunately, some people just do not have that type of support. For many women, raising a kid is a solo mission, with many single moms doing the best they can out there on their own. According to US Census Bureau, children being raised in a single parent household with a mother is the second most common U.S. living arrangement, and has doubled since 1968. For actress Taraji P. Henson, it was so bad she claims she would not wish it on her worst enemy. araji P. Henson, 51, raised her son Marcell on her own after his father, William Johnson’s life was taken in 2003. She recalls it being a struggle for her, navigating raising a black man in America alone.
“It’s hard.” She told NET-A-PORTER back in 2018, recalling moments she dreamed her son with go live with his father or her dad as a teen. “I didn’t date. I wondered: ‘Does he have enough confidence in himself as a Black man?'” While she is proud of herself for the work she’s done raising Marcell, 27, she would not wish the experience on anyone else. “I think we try to do our best. And yes, we can do it all, but I wouldn’t wish being a single parent on my worst enemy,” Henson said. “It is not easy. You need both parents.”
Marcell is following in his mother’s footsteps and taking on the spotlight. The dashing young man has been a staple on fashion runways and has also done some acting appearing in films like “Misled,” “Needlestick,” and “Little.”
Henson and Marcell’s father met in their teens and dating for several years before having him. The pair separated for a time before Marcell was born, with Henson recalling that he had grown insecure with her. He went on to date two other women and welcome other children with them before reconciling with Henson.
The reunion did not last long, and the strain of being new parents eventually made things sour between them. Johnson became violent towards the end, and they separated again. Despite being apart, Johnson made time for Marcell and was a presence in his life until 2003, when he passed following an altercation with a couple over a slashed tire. While raising her son, Henson mainly stayed to herself. Motherhood and Hollywood kept her busy. Now that Marcell is an adult, she has allowed love back into her life and was engaged for a while to NFL player Kelvin Hayden. He proposed in May of 2018, but by November of 2020, Henson had confirmed that things had ended. In a Breakfast Club interview, she said, “I tried. I was, like, therapy. Let’s do the therapy thing, but if you’re both not on the same page with that then you feel like, you’re taking it on yourself, and that’s not a fair position for anybody to play in a relationship.”