In July of 2015 the media lit up with rumors of Louis Tomlinson of the boy band One Direction impregnating a new girl just two weeks after splitting with his former girlfriend of four years (Billboard). Briana Jungwirth, the now mother of Tomlinson’s child, is a Los Angeles hairstylist. “Louis is happy and very excited about becoming a dad and he thinks Briana will be an amazing mother. It was a surprise at first, but he and Briana are very, very close friends and this has brought them even closer,” a mutual friend of the pair told People. On the Fourth of July of 2015, the couple’s moms and stepdads met for the first time and were reportedly “excited and totally supportive,” the friend added. Freddie Reign Tomlinson was born on Jan. 21 in Thousand Oaks, California, making Louis Tomlinson the first member of One Direction to become a dad.
When news broke, Tomlinson’s reps had absolutely nothing to say to the media about the new baby. “Reached by Billboard, a rep for the band had no comment.” Us Weekly wrote “A spokesperson declined to comment on the news.” Sky News also did not receive a statement. “When contacted by Sky News, Tomlinson’s representatives said: ‘No comment, thank you.’” This approach kept everyone talking and wondering if the story was actually true or not while giving Tomlinson and the mother of his child privacy. Though they could have taken the situation and spun it to create an even larger story, his representatives took the high road and the more honorable one. They allowed Tomlinson to be a normal human, something he does not get to be often since he first appeared on X Factor in the United Kingdom in 2010. Tomlinson then only confirmed that he and Jungwirth were having a baby in a Good Morning America Interview Aug. 4 of 2015 (Mirror). When asked about the news he responded “Obviously it’s a really exciting time, so I’m buzzing, thank you.”
The news of Tomlinson’s baby came just a few short months after bandmate Zayn Malik decide to leave One Direction (Billboard). Though the bands representatives were very head on with their approach on the news, the silent approach representatives took when Tomlinson was in the hot seat was not uncommon. “A rep for One Direction had no comment on the split reports,” wrote E News when rumors of bandmate Harry Styles and Taylor Swift breaking up circulated. In some instances, their representatives may think it’s necessary to confirm personal facts to avoid other issues arising. When Tomlinson and long-term girlfriend Eleanor Calder split, his representatives confirmed the singer was in fact single when pictures surfaced of him kissing another girl: “And a representative for Louis confirmed to MailOnline that he has indeed parted ways from 22-year-old Eleanor, whom he had been in a relationship with for around four years.” The representatives don’t seem to make statements on personal situations unless necessary.
When media sources began announcing that Tomlinson had impregnated Jungwirth, many fans did not believe that it was true until the singer confirmed it himself (Mirror). If his representatives confirmed it sooner, they could have avoided fan confusion but it would have taken away from allowing Tomlinson to make his own decisions about his private life. There wasn’t a particular need for damage control or for promotion. Of course, the representatives could have fed off of the current attention and kept Tomlinson in the spotlight, answering questions about his unborn love child and his friendship with the mother of his child, but instead they took the humane route. They allowed Tomlinson to answer on his own and did not exploit him or his at the time unborn child for attention for the band – a praiseworthy decision.