Kelly Clarkson is opening up about how her two children are handling her divorce from ex-husband Brandon Blackstock.
On March 13, Clarkson appeared on an episode of the “Angie Martinez IRL” podcast and spoke about raising her 8-year-old daughter, River Rose, and 6-year-old son, Remington Alexander.
During the hourlong conversation, host and radio personality Angie Martinez asked the “Breakaway” singer to share some of the lessons she has instilled in her children.
Clarkson explained how she makes sure her children are in touch with their emotions.
“I literally ask my kids every night when we’re snuggling up in the bed, ‘Are you happy? And if you’re not, what could make you happier?’ That’s it,” she shared.
Martinez called their nightly routine “sweet” and wondered if Clarkson’s children always say they are happy.
“No!” the talk show host quickly replied, especially in the past two years.
Clarkson continued, “It kills me — and I want them to be honest so I don’t ever say, ‘Oh, God, don’t tell me that.’”
She added that her children have responded to her question with, “You know, I’m just really sad. I wish Mommy and Daddy were in the same house.’”
The 40-year-old musician said she appreciates her children’s sincerity.
“I’m raising that kind of individual. I want you to be honest with me,” she shared.
Coming from a divorced family, Clarkson also understands how her children are feeling following her split from Blackstock.
“I just sit there and I’m like, ‘I get it,’” she said. She then tells her children, “‘That sucks. But we’re going to work it out. And you are so loved by both of us.’”
The conversations are “super simple” yet “so important” because they show her daughter and son that she is open to communicating with them, she explained.
“They’re not small feelings. Those are huge feelings, and those are huge emotions,” Clarkson told Martinez.
The “Voice” coach filed for divorce from Blackstock in June 2020 after nearly seven years of marriage. The exes reached a settlement in March 2022. Court documents obtained by TODAY.com confirmed that Clarkson and Blackstock were granted joint custody of their two children.
On the “Angie Martinez IRL” podcast, the “Miss Independent” singer joked about dreading sending her children off to college, despite them still being in elementary school.
Clarkson said she is confident she and her children will be prepared when they go off into the world on their own one day.
“I think I am my mother’s child and I’m raising very independent children,” she said. “They will be out the door as soon as they are able and capable. They are very independent and I was the same way.”
She expects to be OK when the time comes because “by that point I will have raised someone that I — if I’m doing my job — feel like, I trust you. I trust the decisions you’re going to make. I trust what’s going to happen.”
For now, Clarkson seems to be focused on helping her children adjust to their new normal following the divorce.
In December, she chatted with guest Jewel about co-parenting on an episode of “The Kelly Clarkson Show.”
Speaking about splitting time between parents during holidays, Clarkson said, “It was so weird because you’ve always had a kid there and then all of a sudden you’re alone.”
But, she was optimistic about the situation. “At first it’s weird and then you’re like, ‘OK. I can do things,’” she said, giggling. “It’s kind of incredible. You do get a little 'me' time.”
Ariana Brockington is a digital reporter for TODAY based in Los Angeles. She is a Northwestern University graduate who reports on entertainment news, pop culture and more.