Even Jools and Jamie Oliver struggle with teens and social media

Jamie and Jools Oliver and their eldest girls at right: Daisy, 16, and Poppy, 15.
Jamie and Jools Oliver and their eldest girls at right: Daisy, 16, and Poppy, 15. Photo: Jools Oliver/Instagram

It's true that the rigours of teens and the internet don't quite hit home until you're dealing daily with not only a tumultuous time in a young person's life, but with the amplification of it thanks to social media.

Throw global fame into the mix and it must be even more of a minefield.

Jamie Oliver has admitted that he and wife Jools have had some struggles trying to maintain balance when it comes to their eldest daughters and social media.

Jools and Jamie share five children together; Daisy, 16, Poppy, 15, Petal, 9, Buddy, 8, and two-year-old River. 

In an interview with UK's Woman's Weekly, the embattled chef outlined his recent struggles, which are far from limited to social media and his teenagers.

"Jools and I have struggled at times," he said. "You have to re-tune from having a child to a young woman. Whether we're pulling back or tightening up… especially with social media.

He adds, "We're the first generation of parents having to feel our way through that. If we have too many blips at home, I'll take their phone away for a day."

It's a familiar story for families navigating the complexities of raising teens in this age of high tech portable gadgets.

 

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Not as familiar to many are his current business woes. He's had to close 12 of his 37 Jamie's Italian restaurants in the UK and his Australian businesses were placed into voluntary administration in April, with the Canberra store closing its doors for good.

It's an evolution the popular chef takes in his stride to some degree, acknowledging the chain's time in the sun by saying, "Restaurant years are like dog years, so 10 years is a very long time."

He then admits how hard it has been saying, "It's been a dark time… there's been not-so-nice darkness." 

His business issues have also coincided with the recent death of industry peer Anthony Bourdain. "It's been rough. When it rains it pours," he said, adding that his family is helping him through this extraordinarily rough patch.

"To go back home to a two-year-old asking for an apple is just utterly sweet. It works. It helps. When things get to me, kids are an amazing remedy."

 

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