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David Beckham | Source: Getty Images
David Beckham | Source: Getty Images

'Inappropriate': David Beckham's Photo with Daughter Harper, 12, Causes Big Stir & 6 Other Celebrity Controversies Involving Kids

Milla Sigaba
Jun 17, 2024
02:01 P.M.
  • David Beckham's sweet photo with his 12-year-old daughter Harper caused quite a stir online.
  • This controversy adds to a string of celebrity parenting moments that have sparked heated debates.
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In the age of social media, every post can quickly become the talk of the town. Celebrities often land in hot water over what’s seen as good or bad parenting.

Take David Beckham, for example. His affectionate photos with his daughter have stirred up mixed feelings. From his public displays of affection towards his daughter to celebrity mom's kisses that some find concerning, each of these incidents sparked heated debates and divided opinions.

David Beckham with his daughter Harper at the Burberry "London in Los Angeles" event on April 16, 2015, in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images

David Beckham with his daughter Harper at the Burberry "London in Los Angeles" event on April 16, 2015, in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images

Hilary Duff's Disneyland Kiss with Her Son

Back in 2016, actress Hilary Duff posted a sweet moment on Instagram with her son. She shared a picture of herself giving her son, Luca, a quick kiss on the lips during a fun day at Disneyland.

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"Happiest happiest happiest happiest happiest happiest happiest happiest place on earth! We love you @disneyland 🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻❤️🙌🏻," Duff captioned the photo.

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The seemingly innocent picture quickly sparked controversy, with many people online criticizing the affectionate gesture. "Causing PAIN, and possible infection, to an infant for no purpose other than fashion IS child abuse," one person commented.

Duff was also called "disgusting" by some who found the kiss inappropriate. "I can't see this pic the same no more," one user wrote, while another simply said, "Sick."

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Reflecting on the incident, Duff shared, "I've seen stuff on the internet a couple of years back when we were at Disneyland and I posted a picture of Luca and me kissing on the lips. People were like, 'That's disgusting.'"

In response to the mom-shaming, Duff stood her ground, saying, "For anyone commenting that a kiss on the lips with my four-year-old is 'inappropriate' go ahead and click a quick unfollow with your warped minds and judgment."

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Duff emphasized considering other people's perspectives and advised everyone to focus on themselves instead of external judgments. She mentioned that people often have extreme opinions and suggested it's best to ignore them and find humor in the situation.

The actress and singer also shared that she has faced criticism for giving her six-year-old son piggyback rides. Still, she stressed the importance of making decisions that are best for your own family.

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Gabrielle Union's Newborn Kissing Clip

In December 2018, actress Gabrielle Union shared a touching moment with her newborn daughter on Instagram. The clip showed Union kissing her baby girl on the mouth, with the caption, "Kissing Game. She's got my ❤ on a string. @kaaviajames 💋💋💋."

But the post quickly faced backlash from some social media users. Critics were quick to express their disapproval, with comments like, "That's not a right."

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Another social media user shared, "Dats how u make babies sick their immune system ain't built that strong. That's cute but let's b real (sic)." Despite the negative reactions, many fans came to Union's defense.

Supportive comments included, "Kiss her every day, show that mommy love, she came out of your business, so it's your business where you kiss her!" Another person typed, "You keep showing that love mommy 😍😍😍."

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Union later addressed the criticism in a follow-up Instagram post. The actress wrote in part, "Hey guys, I appreciate all the concern about kisses on the mouth and labored breathing. I am blessed enough to have a nurse here with us while at work."

"Kaav is healthy and I don't even touch her without washing and sanitizing myself and everything and everyone that comes into contact with her. If you think I waited this long and went thru all this to put my baby in harm's way...you got another thing coming (sic)," Union's response continued.

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David Beckham's Affection Towards His Daughter

In early June 2024, David Beckham was snapped sharing a sweet moment with his daughter, Harper Beckham, at an Inter Miami match against St. Louis in Fort Lauderdale.

As the club co-owner, Beckham hoped having his youngest by his side would bring good luck to the team. Despite their efforts, the game ended in a draw.

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Soccer legend Lionel Messi made MLS history by becoming the fastest player to hit 25 goal contributions in a season. However, it wasn't the match result that caught everyone's eye.

Instead, it was Beckham's sweet moment with his daughter. In the photos, Harper stands in her dad's embrace as he wraps his arms around her waist.

David and Harper Beckham during the Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season soccer match between Inter Miami CF and St. Louis CITY SC in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in June 1, 2024. | Source: Getty Images

David and Harper Beckham during the Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season soccer match between Inter Miami CF and St. Louis CITY SC in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in June 1, 2024. | Source: Getty Images

This sparked a heated debate online, with some users criticizing the former soccer star's actions. One commenter wrote, "As sweet and innocent as it may be, it's no longer appropriate anymore. Harper looks like a young woman now. Like empty nest syndrome."

Another added, "I find that picture a bit cringeworthy. Yes, put an arm on her shoulder, but that picture's definitely OTT for me." A third critic stated, "Cringeworthy pictures for goodness sake. She looks about 18. [...] It looks totally inappropriate."

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David and Harper Beckham during the Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season soccer match between Inter Miami CF and St. Louis CITY SC in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in June 1, 2024. | Source: Getty Images

David and Harper Beckham during the Major League Soccer (MLS) regular season soccer match between Inter Miami CF and St. Louis CITY SC in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in June 1, 2024. | Source: Getty Images

On the other hand, many people defended Beckham, praising him for being a loving and expressive father. One supportive fan commented, "She's very lucky to have such a loving father who's not afraid to express his love towards her." They continued:

"My father has never hugged me, complimented me, or shown any real interest in my life, and this has had an immense impact on my self-esteem, especially when I was a young woman. I've always envied women with loving fathers; to me, that's one of the biggest blessings a girl can have."

Harper and David Beckham at the Victoria Beckham FW23 show during Paris Fashion Week on March 3, 2023. | Source: Getty Images

Harper and David Beckham at the Victoria Beckham FW23 show during Paris Fashion Week on March 3, 2023. | Source: Getty Images

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Another supporter said, "He's a loving dad. Nice to see kids that are genuinely adored." A third added, "She is 12 years old and a daddy's girl. My father resented me from the day I was born and made no effort to hide the fact. So good to see their lovely interaction."

This recent controversy follows an Instagram post Beckham shared in April 2024. The black-and-white photo featured the former soccer player and his daughter, who seemed to be sitting on her father's lap.

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"My little girl is growing up 🥹 MY boys get ready @brooklynpeltzbeckham @romeobeckham @cruzbeckham 🥊 @victoriabeckham good job mama 🤍," the caption read.

Some social media users didn’t like the caption. One person commented, "She is only 12 years old, only a child, so let her enjoy her childhood [...]." Another user shared, "What a horrible thing to say, you should be ashamed of yourself."

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But these weren't the only times Beckham's affectionate gestures have caused a stir. In 2011, a photo of him kissing his then-five-year-old daughter on the lips during a beach outing sparked a debate about parenting boundaries.

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Beckham defended his actions, saying he is "very affectionate" with his kids because that's how he was raised. Despite the mixed reactions, many fans supported him. One fan said, "A father having a bond with his child is nothing less than beautiful."

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Olivia Wilde's Kiss with Her Son

In 2017, actress Olivia Wilde posted a tender moment with her son on Instagram. The photo, captioned "Finding hope in this ❤," showed Wilde kissing her son on the mouth while giving him a bath.

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What was meant to be a sweet moment quickly sparked controversy, and critics were quick to voice their disapproval. "@oliviawilde you should not have this on here," one person commented.

"I can't even believe you kiss your son like this!!! 😩," another user typed. A third shared, "Everyone finds it cute and sweet but on the other hand. Shouldn't there be boundaries between a parent and child?"

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However, many followers defended Wilde, praising her openness and loving display. One fan shared, "@oliviawilde Don't let the harsh words keep you from living transparently. The relationship between a boy and his mama is special💜."

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"How sweet! I love that you give kisses!" another person commented. A third typed, "This is such a beautiful photo - how anyone could think this is wrong is beyond me. This is a picture of nothing but love. 💕"

In response to the backlash, Wilde addressed the controversy on Twitter, stating, "Homies we got bigger fish to fry. FOCUS UP. #itstheendoftheworldasweknowit"

Jessica Alba's Surprise at Parental Kissing Norms

In March 2014, actress Jessica Alba shared her surprise when she learned some parents don't kiss their kids on the lips. "Really? Why?!" she asked, adding, "It's your baby. People allow dogs to lick at their mouths."

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Alba's candid reaction showed her belief in the importance of affection between parents and kids. Nearly a decade later, she still shares sweet moments with her children on social media.

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In 2023, she took to Instagram to celebrate her son Hayes' first day of kindergarten. The post featured three pictures, including one of Alba leaning in to kiss her son on the lips.

Jessica Alba leaning in to peck her son Hayes on the lips. | Source: Instagram/jessicaalba

Jessica Alba leaning in to peck her son Hayes on the lips. | Source: Instagram/jessicaalba

"Hayes' first day of #kindergarten 🥹❤️ my handsome boy 😫💔😢… it's just crazy how fast time has flown by. Still my baby," the caption read.

Jessica Alba with her son Hayes. | Source: Instagram/jessicaalba

Jessica Alba with her son Hayes. | Source: Instagram/jessicaalba

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While Alba is firm about showing her kids affection, she also mentioned that she relies on her Mommy and Me group for parenting advice. "They're some of my closest girlfriends," she said, stressing the importance of having a supportive network of fellow parents for guidance and support.

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Coco Austin's Underwater Kiss with Her Daughter

In August 2023, Coco Austin shared a heartwarming moment with her daughter during a fun-filled pool day. The star posted a video of her and Chanel sharing a kiss underwater, showing a playful and loving moment between mom and daughter.

Austin captioned the clip, "Having fun with my Samsung phone, it actually takes great video underwater. Chanel just loves kissing her mama, doesn't she? She is adorable. She is my obsession #motherdaughterlove #mermaids."

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Despite the sweet intent behind the video, it got mixed reactions online. Some users felt uncomfortable, with one person commenting, "This weirded me out." Another shared, "This is getting weird," and someone replied, "Getting? It's been weird."

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The backlash happened just two days after Austin was criticized for posting pictures on Instagram in a pink, blue, and purple bikini. In one of the photos, she posed with her legs open.

Critics were quick to voice their opinions. One person commented, "You're a mother now, grow up," while another added, "What a poor, disgusting example she is for her child."

The controversies around these celebrities show how closely public figures are watched for their parenting choices. While some people call these actions excessive, others defend them as expressions of love.

These debates highlight the need to respect different parenting styles and remind us that the bond between a parent and child is unique and personal.

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