Baldivia vs Baldivia

The recent interview of Julia Barretto obviously affected her father, Dennis Padilla. In a series of a now-deleted Instagram posts, Dennis refuted Julia’s insinuation about their financial situation after her parents separated. 

Dennis was a popular comedian in the early 90s. He used to play sidekick roles to Robin Padilla and even had the chance to get leading roles in television. He is the son of Dencio Padilla, a popular comedian during his prime. It was said that Dencio was against the relationship of Dennis and Marjorie because the former was already committed to a certain Monina at that time. There was no confirmation if Dennis and Monina were married. But one thing was sure, they have kids. Marjorie has a young daughter at that time from a previous relationship with Kier Legaspi, also an actor. 

Dennis became a Caloocan councilor before Marjorie won in 2007. It was in the same year when rumors about a trial separation surfaced. Both parties were mum about it at first. Then sometime in 2008, there was a malicious letter that circulated online about an alleged affair between a married councilor and her city mayor. It was said to come from Dennis Padilla. Good thing, social media was not yet at its peak then. Otherwise, it would have gone viral.

Around this time, the eldest child Julia was already 10 years old. Being on TV was nothing new to her as she started her shampoo commercial when she was younger. Her first TV project was Kokey. These years were silent years between Dennis and his former family until the time came when Julia was starting to build a name for herself. It was the netizens’ impression that Dennis only started to care for his former family when the kids were already grown-up and more stable. 

Of course, Dennis refuted this claim by telling his partial side of the story. But we have to take into consideration the timeline of the events that led to the children’s hurt— what happened after 2007? 

  1. Dennis was probably not able to provide while the kids were growing up because he was no longer that active in showbiz. Before the separation, Dennis and his then sister-in-law Gretchen had an issue when he confronted the latter about TV5’s decision of picking Willie Revillame over him. Gretchen’s common-law husband was the owner of TV5 and Dennis felt that she could have done things to put him in a better position in the network. Their falling out caused them to leave Gretchen’s house where they lived for free. 
  2. In fairness to Marjorie, she took roles to earn when they were still together. Her detractors were probably not aware of it because these were minor roles. 
  3. The kids were probably not close with their Baldivia (Dennis’ real last name) side because Dencio died when Julia was only a baby. I have no idea about Dennis’ mother; I can only assume that the kids never really had a chance to bond with their relatives because of some issues. 
  4. The idea of changing their family name from Baldivia to Barretto could be a result of something that the kids found out later. Were they aware that there was a first family before them? Sometimes, kids get disillusioned when their perceived perfect little family comes out as the opposite. 
  5. Marjorie is no saint but she has her kids who love her very much. On the other hand, none of Dennis’ other kids are there to support him. 

I actually wish this family to heal and forgive one another. I still call them a “family” because even when the parents were no longer together, the love and respect must still be there. Dennis should take a lesson from Jackie Forster who waited for years to finally be welcomed again by her sons Andre and Kobe. When Jackie realized that her aggressive style only made her sons more distant, she let them realize how much she loves them by giving them time to heal and love them from a distance.