Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, were key members of Donald Trump’s White House team. Of course, the four-year tenure of said administration ended in controversy, amid much chaos and drama.
Ivanka and Jared were both chastised in the aftermath. The couple, like the rest of the Trump family, has settled in Florida since leaving Washington.
The last few months have been intense, not least because of Ivanka’s mother, Ivana’s, tragic death. It was speculated a few weeks ago that the 41-year-old would rejoin her father on the campaign trail if he runs for president again in 2024.
However, somewhat unexpectedly, Ivanka declined the offer. Now it appears that the main reason for her decision has been revealed…
Living in a billionaire family appears to be a relatively comfortable life. You’d be able to do almost anything; pursue any dream in the world; take vacations on the spur of the moment; and never be beholden to any boss.
Ivanka Trump grew up in such a household. Donald Trump’s youngest daughter was born on October 30, 1981, in New York City, and grew up with her famous parents. Ivana and Donald divorced when she was ten years old.
Ivanka Trump’s childhood
It was a difficult time in her life, as the divorce included a 13-month legal battle over the financial settlement. Ivana was eventually granted a divorce on the grounds of “cruel and inhumane treatment,” and she received a $25 million payout. Ten million dollars of that total were in cash.
Following the divorce, Ivanka was sent to a boarding school. She attended the Chapin School before transferring to Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, Connecticut, at the age of 15. She was reportedly the only girl there with a cell phone, but despite her powerful status as a Trump, she shared a dorm with two other girls.
The Trump family was extremely wealthy, but her mother, Ivana, wanted Ivanka to be self-sufficient. She is even said to have threatened Ivanka with having to pay her own phone bills. Ivanka decided at that point that she needed to start earning her own money.
She started out as a Versace model and appeared on the cover of Seventeen magazine in 1997.
Ivanka Trump was featured in Elle magazine at the age of 16 and was a co-host of the Miss Teen USA 1997 pageant.
The modeling industry, like many others, can be brutal, and Ivanka eventually decided she wanted out. She instead focused on the family business. She knew she liked real estate even when she was in high school.
Ivanka went on to study for two years at Georgetown University. She then transferred to the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. She earned her B.A. in economics in 2004.
Ivanka began working for billionaire developer Bruce Ratner after graduating. She left a year later to work in the family business.
“It couldn’t just be about my father”
Her father actually wanted her to appear on The Apprentice. Initially, she wasn’t sure it was something for her – though eventually she gave in.
“I knew that for ‘Trump’ to be sustainable it couldn’t just be about my father,” she says. “It has to be about us as a family in some broader context, and the vehicle for that is shows like The Apprentice. That’s why I did it.”
Jared Kushner, her future husband, she met in 2007. He was the first boyfriend she ever introduced to Donald Trump.
In 2009, Ivanka and Jared married at the Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey. They’ve had three children since then.
Arabella Rose was born in 2011, their son Joseph Frederick in 2013, and their third child, Theodore James, was born in 2016.
As previously stated, Ivanka began her career within the Trump organization, eventually rising to the position of executive vice president specializing in development and acquisition. She also launched several businesses, including a jewelry line, and authored several books.
Then, in 2015, as her father announced his presidential candidacy, Ivanka was given an even larger role in his organization. This time, it wasn’t about real estate, but about Donald claiming what some consider to be the most powerful job in the world.
Suffice it to say that Ivanka played a massive part in Donald Trump’s presidential campaign, serving as a consultant to her father.
The role of Ivanka Trump in the White House
She joined him on the campaign trail and delivered several key speeches, including one at the Republican National Convention in 2016.
It was understandably difficult to keep all of these things running at the same time.
“My life is chaotic right now,” Ivanka said. “I’m exhausted 90 percent of the time … Being a mother is the most rewarding experience, but also the most wild and stressful.”
Following Donald’s success, Ivanka was immediately appointed to her father’s administration, alongside her husband Jared Kushner and brothers Eric Trump and Donald Trump Jr.
She worked as an advisor, focusing on “women’s and families’ economic empowerment, as well as job creation and economic growth through workforce development, skills training, and entrepreneurship.”
Despite the fact that the job required long hours, Trump hired his family members as unpaid White House advisors.
Though Ivanka’s time at the White House was enlightening and undoubtedly provided her with unique experiences, it also signaled the start of a few issues.
People who thought Ivanka should have used her influence to prevent Donald Trump from implementing several policies chastised her. Some of those people, who had previously been good friends, wanted nothing to do with her as time went on.
Ivanka Trump has lost some friends.
Chelsea Clinton, the daughter of Bill and Hillary Clinton, was frequently seen with Ivanka at various events with Ivanka and her socialite friends. However, since the Trump administration took over the White House, Chelsea has not spoken to Ivanka, who was once a registered Democrat.
She added: “I think anyone who works for the president certainly should expect to be scrutinized for not only whatever decisions she or he is making, but also for whatever decisions the White House is making on any given day.”
Chelsea Clinton told Watch What Happens Now in 2020 that she felt it was “really hard when there’s someone who’s actively embracing their candidate, whether it’s their father or not. I don’t want to be friends with someone like that.”
“I have not spoken to her since 2016 and I have no interest in being friends with [her]. We were in touch at the beginning of the  campaign but it’s just really hard when there’s someone who’s actively embracing their candidate — whether it’s their father or not … I don’t want to be friends with someone like that,” Clinton added.
As it happened, Chelsea wasn’t the only one within Ivanka’s friendship group to cut ties with Ivanka.
“Ivanka hated all the criticism”
Journalist and Ivanka’s close friend from school, Lysandra Orhstrom, decided she’d had enough after Donald Trump called the media “the enemy of the people.”
In a piece for Vanity Fair, Orhstrom – a maid of honor at Ivanka’s wedding – revealed that they had grown apart. She went on to say Ivanka was spoiled and materialistic in high school.
Lysandra recalled a time Donald had even asked who at their school was prettier than his daughter.
“I think it’s past time that one of the many critics from Ivanka’s childhood comes forward – if only to ensure that she really will never recover from the decision to tie her fate to her father’s,” Ohrstrom wrote.
This isn’t to say Ivanka didn’t have any friends left, and she’s always had a loving family. Even so, losing some of her close friends was understandably upsetting. The New York Post reported in November of last year that Ivanka was disappointed that her friends “turned their back on her” during her time at the White House during her father’s administration.
“Ivanka hated all the criticism and the threats and was unhappy about how a lot of their friends turned their back on them,” an unnamed source said.
The source added: “She feels it’s bad for her family … and negative in general in her circle of friends. She wants as normal a life as she can arrange for her and her family.”
Stores wouldn’t sell her clothes
But it appears losing friends wasn’t the only setback for Ivanka during the White House period. In 2017, several retailers, including Neiman Marcus, Burlington, and Nordstrom, decided to drop Ivanka’s clothing brands. She had launched a clothing line focusing on women’s office wear at an affordable price back in 2011, but when her father became president, the stores decided to punish her.
Later in 2017, Ivanka decided to shut down her fashion company entirely.
“I do not know when or if I will ever return to the business, but I do know that my focus for the foreseeable future will be the work I am doing here in Washington,” she said.
This year has been one of highs and lows for Ivanka. First, her mother, Ivana, passed, and in August, her husband, Jared, underwent a second thyroid surgery after being diagnosed with thyroid cancer.
When Donald announced his 2024 Presidential bid, Ivanka was absent. The former POTUS was said to have tried to persuade his daughter and her husband to join the campaign trail once again, but this time, she said no.
“I love my father very much. This time around, I am choosing to prioritize my young children and the private life we are creating as a family. I do not plan to be involved in politics,” Ivanka said shortly after the announcement.
Why Ivanka Trump won’t go back to politics
“While I will always love and support my father, going forward I will do so outside the political arena. I am grateful to have had the honor of serving the American people and I will always be proud of many of our Administration’s accomplishments.”
Ivanka also said that she is “very proud” of her work at the White House and what she was “able to accomplish” in an interview with Fox News. But passing on her father’s proposal was not only because she wanted to prioritize family, according to a close friend of hers.
“I think losing a parent definitely leads to a real awakening that means different things for different people. For Ivanka, it underscored how fleeting time is,” the unnamed friend told the New York Post.
“But with all the sadness that came from that time, the constant refrain in every story that she heard about her mother … was that she really lived: in work, personally and professionally; (and like Ivanka) she also left it all on the field. She was not waiting to have fun at a later date! She was definitely one of a kind and a true force of nature.”
Ivanka and Jared were said to have decided to retire from politics in early 2021. According to a Trump insider, entering politics “changed the trajectory of all of their lives,” and they are “unlikely” to return.
“Ivanka and Jared … were really specific they would not be coming back. They feel like it was an amazing, extraordinary chapter in their lives—but their exit was not triggered by one thing.”
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