Elon Musk Sees His Two-Year-Old Son as Protégé, Takes Him to Business Meetings

by TK Sanders
(Photo by Theo Wargo/Getty Images for TIME)

Not only did Elon Musk name his son after a seemingly random collection of letters and sounds (X AE A-Xii), but apparently he also takes baby “X” to business meetings as his little protégé. The boy’s mother, Musk’s ex-girlfriend, Grimes, recently said in an interview that Musk takes X everywhere; even sometimes to high-leverage meetings.

At a glance

  • Elon Musk takes his youngest son, nicknamed X, to some meetings and business events
  • The boy’s mother, musician Grimes, sometimes worries that X will feel too much pressure as Musk’s son
  • Musk and Grimes no longer date, but remain close and co-parent both of their children together

“Whatever is going on with family stuff, I just feel like kids need to stay out of it. And X is just out there. I mean, I think E is really seeing him as a protégé and bringing him to everything and stuff.… X is out there. His situation is like that. But, yeah, I don’t know,” shares Grimes.

The musician also shared that she and Musk secretly welcomed a second child together, aptly named “Y,” via surrogacy in the past few weeks. Y is Musk’s eighth child — he fathered six children with ex-wife Justin Wilson (one of which died in infancy), and has since fathered two more with Grimes. His living children from his marriage with Wilson are twins Xavier and Griffin, and triplets Kai, Saxon, and Damian.

As for X, Musk famously brought his then 18-month-old-son to the stage while receiving the Time Person of the Year award. In the viral video, Musk calmly conversed with Time’s CEO as baby X sat happily on his lap the whole time, stealing the show.

Grimes thinks her son will face enormous pressure growing up in the public eye

Grimes, however, expressed some concern about how the public eye will affect her son. She used the movie Dune and one its characters, Paul, to metaphorically explain how she felt about Elon Musk parading their son about the business world. In the story, which served as the inspiration for Grimes’ first album, Paul is a duke’s son who feels the burden of fulfilling his destiny and becoming a great leader.

“When I see X,” she says, “like, I just know X is going to have to go through all this really [messed up stuff] that sort of mirrors Paul-type stuff. I was just crying my eyes out the whole movie.”

X also made another appearance when he joined Musk for a Zoom call and presentation recently. The toddler sat on his dad’s lap as he called in via video chat to give an update on Starship with the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.

According to Musk, he and Grimes are no longer together but converse frequently.

“We are semi-separate but still love each other, see each other frequently, and are on great terms,” Musk said.