After Austin shared a photo of herself breastfeeding the little girl in May, the couple had fans on both sides of the aisle when it came to their uncommon parenting decision. But the Law & Order: SVU star told PEOPLE this week that Chanel doesn't rely on breast milk exclusively for her nutrition, and "it's a comfort thing" for both mother and daughter.
“Coco absolutely breastfeeds because she just wanted that mama connection with the baby,” he explained. “And now Chanel doesn’t breastfeed, but she wants the boob sometimes. It’s a moment where it’ll calm you down. But when people say, ‘Oh, Coco’s still breastfeeding.’ It’s not that. Chanel’s drinking everything in the refrigerator right now.”
Ice added that Chanel has been on other forms of nutrition since she was about 18 months old, saying, “She went to formula and other things. It’s more of a baby’s way of getting comfort from the mother.”
Chanel also co-sleeps with her parents, Ice-T explained.
“Chanel’s still in the bed with us now. She worked her way into the bed. But we love it!” he said. “The thing is, she sleeps in her room but as soon as she wakes up, she’s on her way up to us anyway. We put her to sleep in her bedroom and then maybe 2, 3 in the morning, she might wake up. So it’s not that serious.”
The actor and rapper doesn't mind what people say on social media about their parenting style, he said, as he never reads it to begin with.
“Social media, to me, is to broadcast, not to receive,” he said. “So when I go on social media, I just say what I want. I don’t really care what anyone is saying.”
“I never felt shame because who can shame me? Who is the perfect parent?” Ice-T added. “Parenting is a work in progress and all kids are different. People need to mind their business and worry about their kids. We got this handled.”
Despite Chanel growing up quickly, the couple isn't necessarily looking to expand their family of three.
“She was always one and done,” Ice-T said of Austin. “She said, ‘I just want one. I’m going to spoil it to death.’ And I’m like, ‘Cool.’ She wanted a girl, she got the girl. She’s got a ton of nieces and nephews and she’s happy.”
Photo credit: Instagram/Coco