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Katharine McPhee and David Foster’s disagreement about discipling son: ‘His era of parenting is different’

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Katharine McPhee and David Foster admitted that they don’t always see eye to eye when it comes to raising their two-year-old son Rennie due to their age gap.

The 39-year-old singer and the 74-year-old composer, who married in 2019, told People magazine that they sometimes disagree over their approaches to parenting Rennie because they are from different generations.

“I want to start disciplining [Rennie] and Kat’s not really down with that,” Foster said during a joint interview with McPhee.

david foster katharine mcphee

Katharine McPhee and David Foster revealed that they have different approaches to disciplining their son Rennie, two. (Araya Doheny/Getty Images for Breakthrough Prize)

“No, that’s not true,” McPhee told the outlet. “I just want to discipline in my own way.”

KATHARINE MCPHEE AND DAVID FOSTER RAISING THEIR SON NOT TO BE AN ‘A-HOLE’

“There’s the more old-fashioned way of disciplining which involves time-outs and things like that,” the “American Idol” alum explained. “My take is that you can have more mindful parenting opposed to just assuming that a two or three-year-old can have time alone to reflect on what they’ve done poorly.”

She continued, “I think the more new way of parenting is understanding that with a child, there’s only so much that they can intellectually understand. Saying ‘That was really bad, that was really, really bad,’ gets into a shaming thing. I think disciplining is something that happens over time.”

The “Smash” star  told People that her husband doesn’t entirely share her perspective on modern parenting. Rennie is the sixth child for Foster and the first for McPhee. The record producer, who was previously married four times, is also father to daughters Alison, 53; Amy, 50; Sara, 42; Erin, 41; and Jordan, 37.

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“David’s more results-based. He’s like, ‘He can’t just walk by and swat people’,” McPhee explained. “Of course not. But he’s two and a half, and he’s learning those things.”

“It’s just a different approach. I think his era of parenting is different than mine,” the California native added. 

However, McPhee told the outlet that she and Foster agree to disagree over their different parenting styles. “We don’t have arguments about it,” she said.

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McPhee noted that children learn about boundaries from many different experiences and interactions as they grow up.

“They learn how to have personal space and all those things over time,” she said. “They have to have experiences where they have negative reactions from people more than just their parents, from teachers and fellow students. They get to experience it with life. 

“So we’ll just wait,” McPhee added. “Talk to us when he’s three.”

Katharine McPhee with David Foster

McPhee said that Foster’s “era of parenting is different than mine.” ( Bruce Glikas/WireImage)

During McPhee and Foster’s interview with People, the singer revealed the only activity that can provoke an argument between the pair.

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McPhee told the outlet that she and her husband are completely aligned when collaborating on music. The two recently released the expanded version of their 2022 holiday EP “Christmas Songs” and performed together at the 2023 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday.

“It’s a pleasure,” McPhee said of working with the 16-time Grammy Award winner. “I just always lean into his expertise. It’s always been an easy thing for me.”

david foster katharine mcphee at macys thanksgiving day parade

The couple shared a kiss after performing together at the 2023 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Thursday. ( Jose Perez/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images)

However, McPhee admitted that giving Foster driving directions when they are on the road is “less of a pleasure.”

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“He’s always like ‘Where do I turn now, where do I turn now,” she said with a laugh. “The only time we get into arguments is when I’m helping him navigate freaking directions.”

“It’s true. Because she’s a backseat driver!” Foster exclaimed.

“I’m not, I just know how to follow directions,” McPhee said.

 



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