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Savannah Guthrie shares how she is parenting the same — and differently — than her mother

The TODAY co-anchor describes her mom, Nancy Guthrie, as a "truth teller."
Savannah Guthrie, Nancy Guthrie
savannahguthrie via Instagram
/ Source: TODAY

When Savannah Guthrie was growing up, her mother, Nancy, didn’t pile on praise unless it was deserved. 

“She’s a truth teller. She wasn’t like, ‘You’re just so good at dancing,’” Savannah told TODAY Parents. “If my mom gave me a compliment — I believed her. When my mom had confidence in something, that gave me confidence. She had credibility.”

Savannah hopes to have that same credibility with her 8-year-old daughter, Vale, and 5-year-old son, Charley, who she shares with her husband, Michael Feldman. But the TODAY co-anchor said she is also doing things differently than Nancy.

“I’m trying to be the mother I have, and the mother I wish I had,” Savannah shared. 

She noted that Nancy, who celebrated her 80th birthday in January, was a “shake it off” parent.

“My mom was like, ‘You’re fine,’ ‘You’re OK,’ and there’s a lot to be said for that because you don’t need a mom who is like, ‘Boy, that is the worst thing,’” Savannah said. But at the same time, Savannah wants to encourage her children to express their feelings more in certain situations.

“I’m trying to be a little more, ‘Oh my gosh, did you fall down? Did you hurt your knee? Where exactly does it hurt?’” Savannah said. “I probably would have wanted my mom to be more of a softy.”

Hoda Kotb recently told TODAY that she admires how her co-anchor listens to her kids.

"Savannah will say, 'I get why you're scared — let's talk about it,'" Hoda said. "She listens, she lets them get it out."

Savannah was 16 when her dad, Charles, passed away at age 49 after suffering a heart attack. Charles and Nancy also share children Annie, a writer and jeweler, and Charles 'Camron,' a retired F-16 pilot for the Vermont Air National Guard.

“My father was a seemingly unlikely mix of qualities: always strong, sometimes terrifying, loyal to the end, and disarmingly gentle and tender when it counted,” Savannah recalled in a 2017 essay for TODAY. “He was also tall, affectionate and funny; he had that personality that people describe as ‘lighting up the room.’ He was a 5,000-watt bulb who could turn a mundane trip to the post office into a rip-roaring tale. People adored him and gravitated towards him.”

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