Madonna Shared A Rare Photo Of Her Six Kids – And Gave Fans A Glimpse Into Her Family Life

Madonna is of course an international superstar, the kind of person whose every move makes headlines. And yet despite all that, there’s one aspect of her life she keeps surprisingly low-key. She has six kids, but you probably can’t even name all of them. And you mightn’t have even seen them in a photo until now.

These days, the kids of pop stars are all over magazines and social media. Many of them end up following in their parents’ footsteps and seeking fame. After all, their family name gives them an almost guaranteed ride to the top. But not so with Madonna’s children – or most of them, anyway.

Granted, some of Madonna’s kids are too young to even be thinking about music and Hollywood at the moment. But she still seems to be working to keep them out of the limelight as much as possible. Madonna won’t even allow the younger children to have phones – but more on that later.

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You’d be forgiven for wondering, when does Madonna actually find time to hang out with her children? Does she even get to see all of them in the same room at once? Well, the answer to that question, as it turns out, is yes. On Thanksgiving 2020, the whole family were together.

And Madonna, as she herself noted on Instagram, had a lot to be thankful for on that day. Her six children – four adopted, two of them her biological kids – all seemed happy in the photograph. Their names are Estere, Mercy, David, Stella, Rocco and Lourdes, and they’re all part of a fascinating story.

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Let’s take a look at all the kids as individuals. Lourdes is the oldest, and she’s also probably the one you’ve heard of the most. Her dad’s a man named Carlos Leon, and she uses his last name. Carlos and Madonna were together from 1995 to 1997, but marriage wasn’t on the cards.

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The split between Madonna and Carlos was an amicable one. In 2011 the personal trainer informed People magazine, “I’m forever grateful to [Madonna]. I have no regrets. I wouldn’t change anything. I got the best thing out of that relationship, and that’s my daughter. My daughter is everything to me.”

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Madonna has had lots of boyfriends, but she’s only been married twice. The first time was to the actor Sean Penn, and that lasted from 1985 to 1989. After that she wed film director Guy Ritchie, and they remained together from 2000 to 2008. He’s the father of her second child and first son, Rocco Ritchie.

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Rocco has a bit more of a checkered past. He’s had trouble with the law – and also with his parents. When Madonna and Guy divorced, their son ended up in the middle of a problematic custody conflict. This saw him leaving his mom and heading to Britain to stay at his dad’s home. And after that he got himself arrested.

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Despite all the problems the family faced, Madonna stood by her son after his arrest. She told the media that she loved Rocco no matter what and would help him out with any problems he was having. So that might well have helped things along with regards to the mother-son relationship.

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Rocco and Lourdes’ brother is David, whom their mother adopted in 2006. Unfortunately, his early life was harrowing. He had two brothers who died at very young ages, and then his mother also passed away when he was less than a week old. His dad placed him in an orphanage, which is where Madonna adopted him from.

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There’s been controversy surrounding Madonna’s adoption of David. She adopted him along with her husband at the time, Guy, but David had relatives who were alive at the time. Plus, people adopting there are supposed to have resided in Malawi for at least 12 months. But Madonna herself has claimed everything was above board.

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Madonna’s adoption of her next kid, Mercy, was again controversial. Like David, the little girl had direct relatives still alive in Malawi. And then there was the issue of Madonna no longer being married, unlike how things had been with her previous adoption. The pop star had to pay for a legal team to ensure the process went ahead.

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In 2017 Madonna opened a hospital named after Mercy, and during her speech she talked about the adoption. The star claimed that she’d been turned down by a judge specifically because she was divorced and had then decided, “If you cannot give me a logical reason for the word ‘no,’ then I will not accept the word ‘no.’”

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After Mercy, Madonna still wasn’t done adopting children from Malawi. In 2017 she adopted twins Estere and Stella in the same country. In court, Reuters quoted the judge as saying, “Madonna has demonstrated over the years that she has passion for Malawi and her children, and therefore the court was satisfied and could not stop the adoption of the twins.”

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“After their mother died, the children were looked after by their grandmother, who could not fully provide for them,” Madonna’s spokesperson claimed when talking to People magazine at the time. “So they were taken into an orphanage… [Madonna] smiled while she was making her way out of the courtroom, and then she drove away.”

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So those are the members of Madonna’s family. And despite having had some issues in the past, they all seemed very happy when they gathered together for Thanksgiving in 2020. The holiday is, after all, a time for families to gather, and for Madonna fans it turned out it was also a time to see a rare but joyful occurrence.

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Madonna not only spent the day with all six of her beloved children, but she also filmed a little video with them and posted it online. It showed the kids, all of them grinning and dressed in fabulous outfits, posing next to the mantelpiece to mark the happy occasion. It was a delightful glimpse into Madonna’s home life outside of the spotlight.

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It was also intriguing to see how much the kids had grown up. At this point the twins were eight, Mercy was 14, David was 15, Rocco was 20 and Lourdes was 24. And David appears to have inherited his mother’s love of music. The clip included the teenager playing a tune on a guitar.

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The short vid also depicted Madonna sitting on the lap of her new partner Ahlamalik Williams while they petted their dog. There’s a pretty big age gap between the pop singer and her current beau, but they haven’t let that bother them. She’s 62 and he’s 26, and they met when he was one of her backup dancers.

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The army of Madonna fans on Instagram absolutely loved the video, especially as it afforded them a much-awaited glimpse of the kids all together. A viewer wrote, alongside a crown emoji, “So happy for you to spend the holiday with all of your babies.” And another added, “Bless you and your beautiful family.”

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A few other people commented that it was good to see Rocco present. And it would have been fair to wonder if he’d turn up for Thanksgiving, simply because his relationship with Madonna has had so many ups and downs. In 2019 Madonna even let slip something quite saddening about the whole situation.

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In an interview with Vogue magazine that year, Madonna stated, “I made a mistake when I gave my older children phones when they were 13. It ended my relationship with them, really. Not completely, but it became a very, very big part of their lives.” She wasn’t even just talking about Rocco but Lourdes as well.

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There’ve been some other documented difficulties between Madonna and her two oldest kids. In 2006 she went on the NBC show Dateline and talked about parenting. She admitted, “Having kids is not exactly simple, no matter who you are.”

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Madonna, who was still married to Guy Ritchie back then, admitted, “I have to be mom and wife, and there are times when I should have, you know, hung out with my kids, and I just said, ‘No, I need a massage. I’m gonna do that instead. You know? And I’m gonna be selfish.’” Her kids, she revealed, said that they didn’t see enough of her.

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But it appears things have changed a lot since then, as demonstrated by the video. Madonna seems to maintain a pretty good relationship with Lourdes now. In her 2019 Vogue interview, the pop legend said, “She’s an incredible dancer, she’s a great actress, she plays the piano beautifully. She’s way better than me in the talent department.”

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But were there any issues when Madonna began dating a man her daughter’s age? According to the media, there weren’t. An anonymous insider told the Hollywood Life website in December 2019, “Madonna loves the woman that Lourdes is becoming. And Lourdes knows full well the woman her mother is and has been her whole life. They are on the same page with so many things, their relationship is very strong.”

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In the Vogue interview, Madonna sang the praises of David, her second son. She said, “What he has more than anything is focus and determination. I’m pretty sure he got it from me. He’s the one I have the most in common with. I feel like he gets me; he has more of my DNA than any of my children so far.”

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Madonna has admitted she’s not sure about David’s current choice of future career, though. In 2019 she told TV host Graham Norton that her son wanted to be a footballer. “God, I wish he wanted to be a singer. It would be a lot easier for me,” she added, “I can’t say it’s a disappointment as that’s not fair, but it’s a challenge.”

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Mercy’s probably the least-known-about of all Madonna’s kids. But whenever they appear in public together, it’s clear that Madonna adores her. In 2020 to celebrate the teen’s 14th birthday, Madonna welcomed Mercy to the stage during a concert in Portugal. The singer told her, “The best birthday present I can give you is to teach you to never settle for second best.”

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And Mercy replied to her mother, who’d been experiencing health problems, “I really love you and I want to thank you for everything, Mom. I know you’re going through a hard time right now with your hip and all the injuries, but I want to say that you’re a really strong person. You deserve everything you want.”

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That just leaves the newest two additions to the family: the twin girls. Madonna talked about their adoption to People magazine in 2017, saying, “Sometimes I would just close my eyes and just think, ‘Why isn’t my kitchen filled with dancing children?’ There’s so many children that need a home.”

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Although it was a highlight, the Thanksgiving video wasn’t actually the only glimpse of Madonna’s home life fans had in 2020. A little later in the year Madonna posted details on Instagram about something special: her first ever tattoo. She’d had it done to honor all of her children.

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Madonna went to LA’s Shamrock Social Club to have the tattoo done. She’d asked for her wrist to be inked the first initial of all her kids: L, R, D, M, S, E. And when she posted the pic on Instagram, she tagged it with the single hashtag “Family.”

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In December 2020 Madonna gathered her family, or most of them at least it seemed, around her again for Christmas celebrations. She released a video showing her, Estere, Mercy, David and Stella decking the tree out with homemade adornments. Rocco and Lourdes weren’t in the video, but perhaps they were just busy or out of shot?

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Madonna’s made it clear in interviews that she won’t put images of her children online without their agreement. In 2016 she told Billboard magazine, “A lot of times they’ll send me pictures and say, ‘Please don’t post this,’ and I won’t. They have private accounts, and I respect that.”

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Since then Madonna’s posted more pics of her kids on Instagram and has spoken about how they’re doing. Mercy seems to have gotten into to photography, and judging by the images her mother has posted she’s very good at it. Other videos show her kids dancing, dressing up and just generally having fun.

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Madonna’s also taken the adopted kids to visit their home country. At the very end of 2020 she flew out to Malawi with them and took pictures along the way. The singer also wrote on Instagram that on New Year’s Eve she and the children had been “re-connecting with David’s father and extended family.”

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During that trip Madonna also checked in with her charitable foundation, Raising Malawi. She created it in order to assist orphaned children and their guardians. And the hospital named after her daughter Mercy is part of the organization. The facility offers free healthcare to kids who require it.

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So things seem to be going very well with Madonna’s family. During her 2016 Billboard interview, the pop sensation said proudly, “My family is everything. I will go to war for them. Whatever I’m fighting for, it’s for my daughters and my sons. I want them to have a good future.”

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