Hayden Panettiere says Giving up on her Daughter’s Custody was the Most Heartbreaking Thing She’s Ever Done

American actress, model, and singer Hayden Panettiere is opening up about the custody of her daughter, Kaya.

The Nashville actress was in a long-time relationship with Ukrainian professional boxer Wladimir Klitschko – the couple dated on and off between 2009 and 2018 and then eventually broke up.

After her split with Klitschko, Hayden, who was going through drug addiction problems along with postpartum depression, signed over her daughter’s custody to him.

“In 2018, amidst Panettiere’s battle with addiction to alcohol and pills, the actress made the heartbreaking decision for Kaya to go live in Ukraine with boxing champ Klitschko, Kaya’s father, from whom Panettiere split that year,” per PEOPLE.

Recently, the 33-year-old I Can Do It Alone singer appeared on Jada Pinkett Smith’s Red Table Talk show and shared that many people accused her of being a horrible mother when she gave up her daughter. The actress added that nobody knew what she was going through in her personal life, and she was going through ‘a lot’.

“The idea that I’m a person who would just easily throw out my child, give away my child. The comments that people made, or things that they assumed about my situation with my daughter were just so… heart-breaking.”

“There was a cover of a magazine, I was walking through the airport, it said something like, ‘Why Hayden chose to give up her daughter.’ I was just like, this is so misrepresented. People are like, ‘How dare you, you’re a horrible mother, I could never do that to my child.’ So it was tough and it took me a long time to be able to talk about it.”

According to PEOPLE, while talking about giving up on her daughter’s custody, Panettiere called it the ‘most heartbreaking thing’ she’s ever done in her life.

“You thought this was an agreement that you came to that it was best that your daughter be with her dad,” co-host Banfield Norris asked.

“At first it was not because it wasn’t a discussion,” the actress replied. “If [Klitschko] had come to me and said I think because of where you’re at right now and your struggles that you’re having it would be good for her to be over here with me for a while — which if I had probably had enough of a conversation I would’ve said okay that makes sense, I get it, I’ll come there to visit and stuff like that.”

“Because of the way that it was done, it was very upsetting. I mean, it was the worst signing those papers, the most heartbreaking thing I’ve ever, ever had to do in my life.”

She noted that she was working on her addiction problems, and eventually, things got better, but she couldn’t get her daughter’s custody back, which was not right.

“I was gonna go work on myself, I was gonna get better, and when I got better, then things would change, and she could come to me, and I could have my time with her, but that didn’t happen,” she said.

In her previous interview with the publication, the actress described her seven-year-long relationship with her daughter, Kaya.

“Oh my gosh, that child came out of me. But she is smarter than me. And she’s going to be taller than me!”

“It was the hardest thing I could do,” she continued. “But the best thing for my daughter was to make sure she was okay, take care of myself, and make sure I could be a good mom to her. And sometimes that means letting go.”

Speaking about her depression, the Heroes star said that it got so bad and she couldn’t ask for help from anyone so she resorted to alcohol.

“I did what I had seen family and people around me do whenever they were depressed or stressed out or anything, which was reach for a bottle.”

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Source: PEOPLE

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