Heidi Klum is a self-professed protective parent.
“I am definitely one of them,” the America’s Got Talent judge said Tuesday on Live with Kelly and Ryan, after Ryan Seacrest asked as much following a conversation in which Klum, 44, discussed her reasoning for never showing her four children’s faces on social media.
“My oldest daughter [Leni] is 13 and she wants to post her face and I always say, ‘No, you’re not allowed to,’ ” explains Klum. “Whenever she’s in it, it has to be from the back or [having her face concealed somehow].”
Adds the supermodel and fashion designer, “It’s different when we do it — I feel like we’re grown-ups — but I want to try and keep them children as long as possible.”
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Leni and her younger siblings — Lou Sulola, 7½, Johan Riley Fyodor Taiwo, 10, and Henry Günther Ademola Dashtu Samuel, 11 — are Klum’s children with ex-husband Seal, whom she has kept an amicable relationship with since their 2012 split and subsequent 2015 divorce.
“My kids are always like, ‘I’m not allowed to do this, I can’t do that,’ ” Klum says. “They’ve been begging me to go to sleepaway camp … they just got back.”
She recalls, “My youngest son, after three days, [called and said], ‘Mom, come pick me up. I don’t like the food, I don’t like sleeping with so many boys in one room. The water is so murky. I hate it here.’ ”
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But instead of swooping in, the Halloween queen stood her ground to “talk him off the ledge” — and Johan ended up having a great time at camp.
“I did not really want them to go [initially] because I can’t see what they’re doing!” Klum admits. “My other two didn’t want to come home … but my son, he was happy in the end, but I had to talk him off the ledge.”
“I had to be strong. He was sobbing on the phone,” she continues. “I’m like, ‘Son, you have to stay. You’ll be fine’ … it was harder for me [than them], I think.”