A New York Supreme Court judge has urged Madonna and ex-husband Guy Ritchie to come to an agreement to end their custody battle over their 15-year-old son, Rocco Ritchie, adding that they need to stop pressuring him.
The teen had left the pop queen's Rebel Heart world tour last year and stayed with his father in London. He currently attends school there. Justice Deborah Kaplan had ruled in December that Rocco was to return to be with his mom, whose primary residence is in New York. Guy's lawyer had said the teen did not want to go back to the city. Madonna, who has in recent months posted a slew of photo tributes to Rocco, had wanted the judge to enforce the order, while Guy's lawyer moved for it to be withdrawn.
On Wednesday, the judge told Madonna and Guy she would not vacate the order to return the boy to New York but would also not pull him out of school in London. She also said his parents need to take the pressure off him.
Both parents listened via speakerphone, with their lawyers present in the courtroom. Madonna's lawyer said the singer is not asking for Rocco to be removed from school.
The attorney also expressed sarcasm about Guy, saying, "He taught his son court orders are not important."
A court-appointed lawyer representing Rocco said the teen is currently dealing with a lot of uncertainty and wants to continuing his studies in London. The attorney added this has been a very difficult time for the teen and that she was encouraged the family was starting to heal and is hopeful a solution will be found.
The case remains open. It was almost concluded; Madonna and Guy's lawyers told the judge had discussed a custody agreement but were unable to agree on it.
The judge, who also worked on the former couple's divorce case, told the court Wednesday she remains hopeful Madonna and Guy will be able to come to an agreement that is in the best interest of their son. She also encouraged both parties to work with Rocco's attorney.
"In the seven years since the family has been assigned to me, this is the first issue we've had with their children," the judge said.
Rocco is Madonna and Guy's eldest child together. They also share another son, David, 10, who lives with and travels with the singer and his sister Mercy, 10. Madonna's eldest child, daughterLourdes Leon, 19, is currently studying at the University of Michigan.