Why Joanne Peh hides her kids' faces and kept wedding with Qi Yuwu 'secret'

The Singapore actress shared her thoughts about the level of scrutiny those in the entertainment scene receive.

Photo of Singaporean celebrity Joanne Peh and her children
Joanne Peh hides her kids’ faces to protect them. (Photo: Instagram/joannepeh)

The choice to be a celebrity means you’re under public scrutiny but when does one draw the line on what you choose to keep private?

For local actress Joanne Peh, it’s her kids that she has with husband, actor Qi Yuwu. Peh is a mother to seven-year-old daughter (soon to be eight) and six-year-old son.

Speaking on the Mandarin podcast R U OKAY, the 40-year-old shared why she doesn’t reveal her children’s faces and it’s about maintaining their privacy.

“We’re celebrities but it doesn’t mean they want to be. I think they should have the right to choose,” said Peh.

The mother-of-two is also protective of her kids because she feels the entertainment scene can be very cruel.

She explained, “The level of scrutiny is intense and people are very straightforward. If they’re unhappy, they’ll scold you… and they can say some irresponsible and ugly things… You might be okay with it but those who love you might have a bigger reaction to it.

“It’s very probable [for these to happen] and I feel that at their age, they don’t need to take on such pressure. I feel it’s very unnecessary.”

Peh added that if people knew who they were, there’ll be a lot of criticisms about things like whether they’re good-looking. She said that’s also the reason why she kept her wedding with Qi a ‘secret’.

“They would focus on ‘Whose wedding gown is she wearing?’, ‘How expensive is the ring?’, How many carats?’ and it’s not what we want to focus on. The wedding is something that’s between the two of us.”

Is being a celebrity's kid stressful?

Now that her kids are in school, Peh said people will know that they’re the kids of celebrities. However, she maintained that there’s a difference if you had revealed who they were and if you didn’t.

She said, “Sometimes I have a meeting with the teachers - it was the first year - and they said, ‘Actually, we didn’t know who you and your kid were until the other teachers told me. [Your kid] is very humble and doesn’t put on airs.’”

Peh found it a little odd then because she wondered if the teachers had expected her kid to be ill-behaved.

The following year, the teachers also spoke positively of her kid and explained to Peh that she had seen other celebrities’ kids who behaved differently.

This caused Peh to realise that being a celebrity’s kids is very stressful.

She said, “Even if they’re not under scrutiny, their actions will be magnified - what’s more if their faces were revealed. I really don’t want them to feel such pressure. I hope they can grow up in a very natural environment.”

That said, Peh admitted that it’s already a little unnatural to her kids who think that their parents have a lot of friends because many people want to take a photo with them.

“Of course, this isn’t a natural thing but under such an ‘unnatural’ environment, we want to try as much as possible to give them a normal childhood.”

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