Former Brangelina Bodyguard May Want to Stop Saying He 'Fathered' Their 6 Kids

Brad Pitt Angelina Jolie kids
While it seems as though Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt are trying to keep the details of their split as private as possible, the same can't be said for some members of their inner circle (or previous members, as the case may be). Former bodyguard Mark Billingham, who spent 18 months working for the family, has come forward with a pretty bold claim: that he basically "fathered" Angie and Brad's six children.


In an interview with the Sun, 51-year-old Billingham -- who was a Special Air Service officer before signing on with the celeb family -- opened up about his experiences safeguarding the couple and their kids (Maddox, 15, Pax, 12, Zahara, 11, Shiloh, 10, and Knox and Vivienne, 8).

"Angie and Brad are very worried about who goes near their children," he told the paper.

Kidnapping was a major concern, according to Billingham (Angie and Brad make perfect targets for ransom hunters), as were stalkers in general, which Billingham apparently had to deal with on an alarmingly regular basis.

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All of that sounds intense, but still like pretty standard celebrity bodyguard stuff. Other parts of Billingham's description, however, indicate a relationship with the family that went beyond typical safekeeping:

It was clear from the start we had a great chemistry and they trusted me with the kids. We got very close, I was living with them all the time. I could take the kids anywhere I wanted to on my own. No one else was allowed to do that. Even when I wanted to bring in extra people, they wouldn't let any of those near the kids. They could look out for them from a distance but they couldn't physically touch them. I took them swimming. I fathered them, basically.

Wait, back up a second there -- Billingham fathered Angie and Brad's kids (basically) because he took them swimming and could take them anywhere he wanted to on his own?

Anyone who knows the overwhelming amount of effort and heartbreak and exhaustion involved in actually parenting a child knows there's a bit more to it than that. Sounds more to me like he "uncled" those kids, not fathered them. Sure, he was a pretty cool uncle, protecting their lives and taking them on outings and such (all of which he was getting paid to do), but it seems kind of scummy for this guy to come out in the middle of all the ongoing divorce controversy and say he was a father to Brad Pitt's kids -- especially because that implies Brad Pitt wasn't a father to his kids. (And especially because Brad Pitt's reputation as a dad is currently under major scrutiny.)

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I'm sure Billingham did his job well, but at the end of the day, what he did was just that -- a job. As a mother of three who worked as a nanny during college, I can tell you with certainty that no matter how many hours I spent a week with my charges as a nanny (sometimes as many as 60 -- and yes, I even took them swimming!), it would never have crossed my mind to say that I mothered those children. Protecting kids as a career is not the same thing as parenting. 

Sadly, it seems as though Billingham's whole agenda might have been to disparage his former clients and their parenting skills, as he also used his interview with the Sun to comment on their supposed lack of smarts:

What surprised me was their low level of common sense. I found it crazy when they would ask me questions like, 'How do I go down to that bar?' and 'What do I need to do to get there?' They're not stupid, but because of the world they live in they just haven't done something like that for so long. I found that weird.

What I find "weird" is why this guy (who says he stopped working with the Jolie-Pitt clan because he didn't have enough time with his own family) would spill all these secrets about people he claims to still occasionally work for. After all, if he really did act as a father to those kids, you'd think he would care enough about them not to drag their family's name through the mud. 

That's not fathering, pal. And neither is swimming.


Image via TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images

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