David Beckham attacked because four-year-old Harper uses pacifier

The scandal! David Beckham's four-year-old daughter was photographed sucking on a pacifier, and he is not OK with the parenting criticism. See how he fired back.

Photo: David Beckham via Instagram Photo: David Beckham via Instagram

You go, David Beckham!

The legendary soccer player fired back at the Daily Mail for telling him how they think he should parent after his four-year-old daughter, Harper, was photographed sucking on a pacifier (or what they call a "dummy" in the U.K.).

The paper went so far as to say David and wife Victoria Beckham "were putting their daughter's well-being at risk" for such a ghastly parenting maneuver and that they were—gasp!—endangering children of the Earth because they are role models and thus setting a bad example.

"I can't believe [Harper] is still using a dummy," the paper's parenting expert, whom they describe as a "former midwife," states. "If she has a dummy in [her] mouth at this age, at four, it really can damage her teeth and it is very likely to hinder speech development."

"David and Victoria seem wonderful parents and I'm sure they give Harper lots of attention but, like it or not," she adds, "they are role models and lots of people will see this and think that having a dummy at this age is normal when it is not." Gasp! The children!

"It could be last child syndrome," she goes on to speculate, "because she is the youngest David and Victoria could be clinging on to her being a baby." Oy.


Taking to his own Instagram account, David posted a reasonably angry response to the article.

"Why do people feel they have the right to criticize a parent about their own children without having any facts ??" he writes, alongside this screenshot of the article, featuring himself  and daughter Harper sucking on her pacifier...

Photo: David Beckham via Instagram Photo: David Beckham via Instagram

"Everybody who has children knows that when they aren't feeling well or have a fever you do what comforts them best," he continues, "and most of the time it's a pacifier so those who criticize think twice about what you say about other people's children because actually you have no right to criticize me as a parent ..."

You tell 'em, Beckham!


This reminds me of a quote our clever Art Department shared on our own Today's Parent Instagram account recently...

Photo: Today's Parent via Instagram Photo: Today's Parent via Instagram

While experts do warn that sucking on thumbs or pacifiers isn't great for kids' teeth in the long run. But, David's got a great point: Who knows what the circumstances were when the photo was taken? Maybe Harper was sick? Maybe David needed a little break? Gosh, we all need a break from trying to be perfect parents. And seriously, whose business is it anyway—other than Harper's parents'?

Sighh, indeed, this isn't the first time a celeb has been attacked for bad parenting in the media. Just recently, we saw the public virtually stone Ryan Reynolds for carrying baby James incorrectly in her baby carrier.

What do you think?


Love! xo Haley-O Celebrity CandyFollow along as Haley Overland delivers the latest scoop on celebrity families—plus sweet celeb interviews! You can’t have too much of this candy, so check back often.

Read more: Charlize Theron adopts a baby girl> 15+ celebrity kid photos shared by their parents (July 2015)> 15+ celebrity kid photos shared by their parents (June 2015)>

This article was originally published on Aug 11, 2015

Weekly Newsletter

Keep up with your baby's development, get the latest parenting content and receive special offers from our partners

I understand that I may withdraw my consent at any time.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Haley Overland is a writer/editor at Today's Parent. Our resident celebrity queen, she dishes out all the sweetest scoop on celebrity families at our Celebrity Candy blog. She has interviewed celeb moms like Jennifer Garner, Jessica Alba and Jillian Michaels, and has shared her expertise on CTV’s ETalk. Haley also has an award-winning personal blog,, where she writes about everything from motherhood to yoga, her dog “Betty White” and what it's like to be Clive Owen's girlfriend. Haley has two kids, whom she fondly refers to online as “The Monkey” and “The Rascal.”