Halle Berry has taken ex-boyfriend Gabriel Aubry to court for allegedly trying to change the appearance of their daughter to make her look white.
She claims that Aubry straightened six-year-old Nahla’s curly hair and lightened it in a bid to make her look less African-American.
Court documents accuse Aubry of inflicting “potential psychological and physical damage” to their daughter and could cause her to wonder “why her natural appearance is not good enough”.
“I want both Gabriel and I to make decisions together that affect our daughter, her growth, her development and her general welfare,” said Berry in the documents.
“I continue to hope that Gabriel and I can find a way to work together to be successful co-parents. It was with regret that I concluded that I had to seek the court's intervention on these issues, but until Gabriel recognises the meaning of joint legal custody and how it is implemented, it appears that the court will be my only resort to safeguard Nahla's best interests.”
The court appearance on Monday was attended by Berry’s lawyer, Steve Kolodny, and also Aubry. A judge ruled that neither parents could change Nahla’s look from its natural state.
The couple split in 2010 after four years together.
The actress told Ebony magazine in 2011 that she “feels like” her daughter is black, although she wants her child to make her own mind about how she perceives herself.
“I'm not going to put a label on it,” she said. “I had to decide for myself, and that's what she's going to have to decide - how she identifies herself in the world. And I think, largely, that will be based on how the world identifies her. That's how I identified myself.
“But I feel like she's black. I'm black and I'm her mother, and I believe in the one-drop theory.”
Berry is also seeking to decrease the child support she gives to Aubry, from $16,000 to $3,800 per month, claiming that the model uses the money to finance his personal fitness, clothing, electronics, car and health insurance.
The actress married French actor Olivier Martinez in July 2013. She gave birth to their son, Maceo, in October last year.Reuse content