Child star Brooke Shields was raised by an overbearing mother, Teri Shields, who controlled her. Even when she started dating, Brooke's mom only wanted her daughter to give her attention, but that all changed once she got involved with her first future husband.
Former child prodigy Brooke Shields was brought up by a bossy mother, Teri Shields, whose marriage to Frank Shields lasted less than a year.
Brooke's father, who died from pancreatic cancer, came from a privileged background with an educated family. She described her mother as "scrappy, a street fighter," during an interview with GoodHouseKeeping in December 2009.
Actors Brooke Shields and her mother Teri Shields during the CBS Television Competition Special "Celebrity Challenge of the Stars" at Mt. San Antonio College on March 23, 1980 in Walnut, California. / Source: Getty Images
Although Frank left Teri, he left her with a treasure, their daughter. Brooke, as a child, became her mother's consolation, her pride and joy, and most notably, her obsession.
Teri showered her daughter with toys and clothes and provided her with ballet and piano lessons, including riding lessons. She even took her to Broadway shows.
With Frank gone, she kept young Brooke close to her and made decisions on her behalf, especially when she started modeling at 11 months in an Ivory Soap commercial.
Brooke Shields and Teri Shields during the "Endless Love" premiere party at Hisae Restaurant on July 16, 1981 in New York City. / Source: Getty Images
When little Brooke starred in the 1978 film "Pretty Baby," it created a controversy. Things escalated when she later appeared in the overtly sexual "Endless Love" and "The Blue Lagoon."
Though it seemed like Teri provided her child with all the freedom, behind the prying eyes of Hollywood, the model was under strict observation.
Her mother criticized her manners, forbade her to swear, and gave her a 10 p.m. curfew. Throughout Brooke's childhood, Teri suffered from addiction which fueled her erratic behavior, and she became explosive in some cases.
Teen model Brooke Shields posing with her mother and manager Teri Shields in 1978 in New York, New York. / Source: Getty Images
She suddenly sobered up when Brooke threatened to move in with Frank. However, that was only to buy time because Teri went back to her habitual drinking on and off over the years.
That put her daughter under immense pressure as she now had to care for her. Brooke's home experience, combined with her fame, made things even worse for her. She later said:
"I should have been a disaster."
Brooke Shields and Teri Shields during the Press Party at Regine's on May 6, 1981 in New York City. / Source: Getty Images
But she turned out well despite enduring such a strict upbringing, saying it was because of her parents' innate integrity. "The respect I had for her made me want to behave," Brooke said of her mom.
In addition, while she had always made money, her mother Teri was always the one having to spend it all. Still, Brooke thought highly of her parent and once said that Teri would have poured all the love that she had never experienced into her and her career.
The "Sahara" star added her mom was street smart, had wit, and was overly protective. "She could have been a great agent/manager for everyone," she stated in her book titled, "There Was a Little Girl: The Real Story of My Mother and Me."
TERI CONTROLLED HER DAUGHTER'S LOVE LIFE
Singer Michael Jackson, Brooke Shields and Terri Shields during the 53rd Annual Academy Awards. / Source: Getty Images
Regardless of that, Brooke revealed that Teri controlled her romantic relationships and even encouraged her to befriend A-listers such as Michael Jackson, George Michael, and John Travolta. She said her mother suggested those kinds of men because of their sweet natures and their level of fame, adding they were more gentle:
"She loved that I had briefly dated John Travolta, Jimmy McNichol, Leif Garrett, Scott Baio, and John Kennedy. They were all on Teen Beat magazines and stars in their own right."
Brooke revealed that her mom trusted she would keep her vow of abstaining from having sex and instead enjoy the attention she received from dating all those men. Teri also loved the King of Pop, Jackson, and said her daughter was good for him as a supportive friend.
Brooke Shields and Terri Shields pictured at a taping of "Celebrity Challenge of the Sexes." / Source: Getty Images
One day, the "Wanda Nevada" star visited Trinity with a pal who was an undergrad, and Kennedy Jr. gave her a tour of Brown University. They spent a day together on campus and told him a story whereby she refrained from telling him about marrying him one day.
However, that all changed when she met a college guy named Dean Cain. But her mother, Teri, was not too happy about their relationship. She became judgmental and low-key, fearing what Brooke had with Cain.
K Callan and Eddie Jones as Martha and Jonathan Kent parents of Clark played by Dean Cain in the series "Lois Clark The New Adventures Of Superman." / Source: Getty Images
The "Charlet Girl" star explained that her relationship as a threat to her mom went beyond Catholicism, adding Teri wanted to possess her:
"I believe she wanted me to stay hers alone."
Brooke said her parent believed in an absolute hold over her and prayed that she never thought of breaching that. But unbeknown to her, Cain became popular after college and became the "Superman."
BROOKE & CAIN DATED DESPITE HER MOTHER'S DISAPPROVAL
Actor Dean Cain and his girlfriend Brooke Shields during the National Conference of Christians And Jews' 32nd Annual Humanitarian Award Salute to Robert Iger at the Beverly Hilton Hotel on November 9, 1995 in Beverly Hills, California. / Source: Getty Images
Although Teri made her feelings known about Brooke and Cain's relationship, the couple dated regardless of her disapproval; when Brooke met the actor, a football player at Princeton University, he was a year behind her.
The pair were instantly overly in love with each other and supported each other's activities. Brooke saw all his games, and in turn, he attended all her dance and theatre performances.
It was love at first sight for the duo, who connected in a way that they only could understand and did not care about the outside noise. They greatly showered each other with affection by holding hands and wanting some time alone to kiss.
Dean Cain during the 5th Annual MTV's Rock n' Jock Baseball Game at Blair Field on January 15, 1994 in Long Beach, California. / Source: Getty Images
Brooke found it disheartening that she had to make Cain wait for eternity and her mom ensured it. It unsettled her because she felt like she was still watching them even when Teri was not around. "We were in love and so incredibly attracted to each other," Brooke explained.
Even when Teri made some uncomfortable comments, the Hollywood starlet overlooked them because she was madly in love. Being with her boyfriend was "the best thing that could have happened to me."
The actress became attached to Cain but, at the same time, remained entangled with her mother and their life. She and her lover had been together for a while, which felt like a lifetime. They even almost walked down the aisle.
"We were almost the couple who got married after being college sweethearts. We did everything together and were well-known on campus. He was the first man who really knew me and loved me," said Brooke.
In December 2014, Cain made an appearance on "The Meredith Vieira Show" and echoed the same sentiments about their romance, stating they were in love with each other:
"We were in love with each other. I was in love with her, certainly. We were in college, and we were sweethearts. There was nothing that I did that I was ashamed of."
BROOKE LOST HER VIRGINITY TO CAIN - IT RUINED THEIR RELATIONSHIP
Producer and television personality Dean Cain as Clark on "Lois Clark The New Adventures Of Superman," on November 18, 1995. / Source: Getty Images
Brooke lost her virginity to Cain and what should have been the bliss phase of their relationship turned out to be the beginning of the end. She later said it should have been what she wished for herself, but immediately she was consumed by guilt when it happened.
Instead of giving into a loving and emotionally safe relationship, Brooke started sobbing quietly. Though she did not regret the deed with Cain, she deeply regretted being preoccupied and fearful.
The "Suddenly Susan" star deprived herself of enjoying how much she and Cain adored one another and how long they had been together. "I got so overwhelmed that I just jumped out of my bed," Brooke divulged.
Brooke Shields looking dejected during the Wimbledon Tennis Championships where her boyfriend Andre Agassi lost his semi-final match to Boris Becker. / Source: Getty Images
She added the bed was very high and tumbled off and started running. The New York native went to sleep in another room so that her mom could not find out, explaining:
"If I loved and gave myself to another, I was no longer in her control."
Cain ran after his girlfriend with a comforter and grabbed Brooke by her shoulders to stop her from running. The brunette beauty explained that she did not know how to fit him into her life.
"I didn't know where I began and where my mother ended," said Brooke, "I could not handle loving somebody more than my mom."
Brooke Shields and Teri Shields photographed in 1981 in New York, New York. / Source: Getty Images
Cain mentioned that Brooke felt like she had the weight of the world on her shoulders because of the fears she had based on her mom. She was scared of betraying her.
When talking about his reaction after the first time they had sex, Cain shared his first instinct was to comfort Brooke, who was hysterical. Although he found their situation harmless, Brooke saw things differently, but he could only calm her down, and it worked.
The producer revealed that they are still good friends, adding that when Brooke told him that she would be writing a book that would include their encounter, he said to her that he trusted her.
BROOKE MANAGED TO LIVE OUTSIDE OF HER MOTHER'S SHADOW
Brooke Shields posing while holding her diploma from Princeton University on her graduation day. / Source: Getty Images
After Brooke graduated from Princeton, she took a leap of faith and tried something new with her acting career, entrusting herself to raise the bar. She began turning down movie parts that wanted to portray her otherwise.
"The old me felt creepy," she said of the new change, adding, "I didn't want to be it anymore." However, not many people were convinced that her strategy would work, but that did not stop her as long as she tried because she knew hard work.
Brooke did not fire her mom as her manager until she was 30. She later wed tennis star Andre Agassi who encouraged her to cut the cord with her mom and be independent.
Tennis Player Andre Agassi pictured with his girlfriend Brooke Shields in April 1997 In California. / Source: Getty Images
"He was the one who said, 'You need to change it up, get an agent, maybe move to California, be serious. And, you need to figure out how to separate from your mom," she revealed.
But that was easier said than done because it would take Brooke a long time to cut ties with Teri, who continued her addiction. It left her daughter with no other choice but to limit visitations during the holidays. Brooke admitted it was easy for her, but it was hard on her mom.
TERI WAS DIAGNOSED WITH DEMENTIA - BROOKE CARED FOR HER AGAIN
Brooke Shields and daughter Grier Henchy arriving at the premiere of "Furry Vengeance" at the Bruin Theater in Westwood, Los Angeles. / Source: Getty Images
But the mother and daughter were later hit by a curveball when Teri got diagnosed with dementia. She began to wander, and Brooke said she kept trying to keep track of her in New Jersey.
Brooke spoke to her mother on the phone daily, but the calls were often unpleasant because Teri would begin to sound desperate, saying she only had her. It bothered the "Lipstick Jungle" star, but she still visited Teri three times a week.
Brooke Shields, Chris Henchy and daughters Rowan Henchy and Grier Henchy during Haley & Jason Binn's Annual DuJour Summer Kick Off Soiree with The Borgata Hotel & Casino at Bridgehampton Tennis and Surf Club on May 26, 2013 in Bridgehampton, New York. / Source: Getty Images
"The Bachelor" star mentioned that every time she visited her mom, she would emphasize how unhappy she was, saying, "I've got to get out of here." Brooke added, "she is still needy, toxic, and scarred as she was," but mainly broken.
Teri did not hold down on the critiques on her daughter either. Every time Brooke walked through the door, she would be judgmental or become critical of her. She would comment on her weight and say her hair was too dark.
Chris Henchy, Brooke Shields and Rowan Henchy during The John Varvatos 4th Annual Stuart House Charity Benefit at John Varvatos Boutique in West Hollywood, California. / Source: Getty Images
As a mother herself to two daughters, Brooke made it known that Teri was no longer her priority and happily gave that spot to her children, Rowan and Grier, whom she shares with her husband, Chris Henchy.
Sadly, Teri died in 2012 after a long illness related to dementia, a spokesman revealed at the time of her death. The actress passed at age 79 in Manhattan.
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