When Paris Jackson was first born, Michael Jackson, her father, was her primary caregiver. She and Prince, her elder brother, and later Blanket, her younger brother, grew up in Neverland and travelled all over the world, with Michael watching over them. Debbie was not as involved, as she has herself admitted, but are the mother and daughter close now?
Paris Jackson and her mother Debbie Rowe have had an up and down relationship, and it is not clear how close they are now.
Michael married Debbie while he was on tour in Sydney, Australia in 1996, after being introduced by dermatologist Arnold Klein, who became a close friend of his.
She was six months pregnant with his first child at the time of their wedding, according to Randy J Taraborrelli’s book, Michael Jackson: The Magic The Madness, The Whole Story.
Debbie gave birth to Prince on February 13, 1997, then added to their family with Paris who was born on April 3, 1998.
Michael and Debbie divorced in 1999, and the singer had full custody of the children.
This meant Prince and Paris were not brought up around their mother very much, and in a recent interview with Naomi Campbell, Paris said she ‘travelled the world’ with her father as a child.
Before the couple divorced, Debbie admitted she had never intended to be a mother and left much of the parenting to Michael.
She said on Michael Jackson: The Footage You Were Never Meant To See: “I did it for him to become a father, not for me to become a mother.
“You earn the title parent. I have done absolutely nothing to earn that title.”
She said Michael raised happy, safe children, adding: “That is because Michael did all the parenting. I didn’t do it to be a mother.
“I didn’t change diapers. I didn’t get up in the middle of the night, even when I was there, Michael did it all.”
Paris has said this was her experience as well, telling Rolling Stone in 2017: “When I was really, really young, my mom didn’t exist.”
After realising she must have a mother, she asked her brother Prince and father about the truth.
She continued: “‘And he’s like, ‘Yeah.’ And I was like, ‘What’s her name?’
“And he’s just like, ‘Debbie.’ And I was like, ‘OK, well, I know the name.’”
In 2004, Debbie went back to court to reverse the custody decision after Michael was subject to allegations of sexual abuse.
The pair came to a settlement and Michael was acquitted of the charges in
2005, but Debbie was not done there, and returned to court after Michael’s death in 2009.
She came to a custody agreement with Michael’s mother, Katherine Jackson, who was named the children’s guardian.
After her father’s death, Paris started researching her mother and finally met her when she was 13-years-old, two or so years after Michael died.
While it is not clear about their connection in the years which followed, Paris was part of her mother’s life when, in 2016, Debbie was diagnosed with breast cancer.
Speaking on Entertainment Tonight about her diagnosis, Debbie said: “Chemo does its best to make you lose your femininity; you lose your hair, you lose your eyelashes, you lose your eyebrows.
“What a lot of people don’t realise is that when I take this [her wig] off, I’m still me. I’m still feminine, I’m still a woman and above all, I’m still a woman.”
Speaking of her relationship with Paris, she said: “She is my rock. She is amazing.
“She has been with me the whole time. The first phone call took her 30 seconds when she found out, and she said, ‘Are you ok?’
“I said, ‘Yeah, I got this,’ and she said, ‘I know you do, Mum.’ For her to kiss my bald head, it’s awesome.”
Both Paris and Prince gave updates during her chemotherapy, which ended in January 2017.
However, in the 2017 interview, Prince said little about his relationship with Debbie, saying Paris ‘needed a mother figure,’ hence her decision to find her after Michael’s death.
Paris said: “I’ve had a lot of mother figures but by the time my mom came into my life, it wasn’t a ‘mommy’ thing.
“It’s more of an adult relationship. We’re both very stubborn.”
Then in 2018, it was reported Paris cut ties with her mother and moved to a commune in Topanga Canyon, Los Angeles.
However in 2019 images were released of the pair sharing a maternal embrace at Paris’ concert with her then-boyfriend Gabriel Glenn, whom Debbie said she had met and approved of.
As of 2021, it is unclear if they have remained in touch, as both rarely do interviews or speak of their private life publicly.