Papa Was A Rolling Stone: Celebs With Daddy Issues

November 20, 2014  |  
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These days, daddy issues seem to be a dime a dozen and these stars, unfortunately, have had their own complicated relationships with their fathers and opened up to the public about them.


Naughty By Nature rapper Treach appeared in the fifth season of “Couples Therapy” to work on his relationship with his longtime girlfriend Cicely Evans. But during a session with Dr. Jenn, the New Jersey native revealed that he hadn’t seen his father in over 30 years and didn’t even know if he was dead or alive. Treach opened up about his own shortcomings as a father to his children, which were a result of his father’s abandonment. His father joined his famous son in another one-on-one session with Dr. Jenn.

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Kelly Rowland

Kelly Rowland grew up in an abusive household until her mother worked up the courage to leave her alcoholic husband when Rowland was 11 years old. Since then, he’s been non-existent in his famous child’s life but last year Christopher Lovett was ready to rekindle a relationship with his daughter. Promising that he only wanted to spend what little time they had left together, Lovett said he wasn’t looking for money. But several years earlier Rowland said that although she was open to communicating with him she would only do so when she was ready.

Dennis Rodman

Dennis Rodman went 42 years without seeing his father. The former NBA All-Star finally laid eyes on Philander Rodman Jr. two years ago when he showed up at an exhibition game in the Philippines. The elder Rodman moved to the Philippines almost 50 years ago and admitted to fathering 29 children with 16 different women. He tried to meet his famous rebounding son six years earlier when Rodman was in Manila for another game but the Chicago Bulls player declined. The father and son spent no more than three minutes together before he moved on to continue signing autographs.

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Like so many other young women, Rihanna found herself in a cycle of abuse after she was assaulted by ex-boyfriend Chris Brown. The Bajan singer revealed in an interview with Oprah Winfrey that she grew up in an unstable household thanks to her father’s addiction and violent temper towards her mother. Rihanna had a hard time connecting emotionally with any man because of her dad. She was able to forgive the “Run It” singer only after she came to terms with her own father and their complicated relationship.

Frank Ocean

You know there’s some bad blood between a father and son when the dad looks to sue his own child. In 2012, Frank Ocean took to twitter to announce that his father, who he hasn’t seen since he was six years old, was looking to sue the now famous singer. “Father wanna sue me for a million. Like I owe him back child support. Weak individual bought me a swiss knife at 6yrs old then dipped on me,” Ocean tweeted before deleting it. No word on whether or not his father actually went through with the case but last year he did file a $142 million lawsuit against Russell Simmons after his website, Global Grind, called him a deadbeat dad.


Adele’s hit album “21” was about a boyfriend that broke her heart but the English born singer could certainly write a few songs about her father. Mark Evans walked out of the future star’s life when she was just a little girl and because of his alcohol addiction, he was in and out of her life. Even though she forgave him for his years of neglect, the “Rolling in the Deep” singer stopped speaking to her father in 2011 after he did an interview revealing details about her their troubled past. Stricken with cancer, last year Evans publicly pleaded to see Adele and her new son.

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Drake has gained a legion of female fans thanks to his knack for pouring his heart out in his songs. The Canadian rapper comes from a broken home and while he was raised as an only child by his mother north of the border, Aubrey Graham spent a lot of time with his father especially in Memphis, TN. But as a drummer for Jerry Lee Lewis, Papa Drake was a rolling stone and his inconsistency and absence took its toll on the sensitive rapper. Drake let his feelings about his father be known in the song “Look What You’ve Done.” But Drake and his father have since worked through their issues.


Matthew Knowles helped turn Destiny’s Child into household names before navigating his daughter’s solo career to even higher heights. But in 2011 Beyonce announced that after a very successful run, she would no longer be using her father’s services as her manager. She said it was because she needed boundaries but around the same time her parents were going through a nasty but quiet split. Word on the street was Papa Knowles had been unfaithful and after it was confirmed that he fathered another child, she distanced herself from him.

Jay Z

Jay Z can relate to Beyonce’s daddy issues because he has some of his own. The Brooklyn rapper has lamented in his songs about not having his father Adnes Reeves around. After his parents divorced, Reeves was absent from his son’s life and his addiction to alcohol was to blame. After more than 20 years, the pair reunited and the “Tom Ford” rapper forgave his dad for his excessive drinking shortly before he passed away. Jay revealed his fears of being an absent dad just like his own father in the song “Glory,” which was dedicated to his newborn daughter.

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Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas

When Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas first became rich and famous, she used the opportunity to build a relationship with her father. Viewers tuned in to Sally Jesse Raphael’s talk show to see the TLC member meet her father for the first time. But 20 years later, she was still having trouble in her relationship with her father. Chilli and her brother Hassan confronted their father on her reality show “What Chilli Wants” about him skipping family functions and his overall absence during important milestones in their lives.

Mackenzie Phillips

In 2009, eight years after her father’s death, Mackenzie Phillips went on Oprah Winfrey’s talk show and revealed that she had been involved in an incestuous relationship with her father, folk singer John Phillips. The “One Day At A Time” actress said the relationship began one night after they had both gotten high. She 18 years old at the time. Phillips claimed it was only after she became pregnant ten years later did she end things with the Mamas & the Papas singer. He paid for an abortion and Phillips said that was the last time she let him touch her.

Michael Jackson

You know Michael Jackson wasn’t happy as a child after hearing him sullenly sing, “Have you seen my childhood?” Jackson admitted he was a sensitive child growing up and his father Joe Jackson ruled with an iron fist. In his mind, the matriarch of the large and talented family was instilling discipline in his children while preparing them for life as international stars. But a lot of people would consider some of Joe Jackson’s tactics child abuse and Michael was one of them. After he passed away suddenly in 2009, his will revealed that he left his father nothing.

Tatum O’Neal

Tatum O’Neal followed in her father’s very famous footsteps and became an actress. But she always had a rocky relationship with dad Ryan O’Neal. He didn’t even recognize his own daughter and hit on her during Farrah Fawcett’s funeral. The father and daughter duo tried to repair their broken relationship and it was filmed for the cameras on their short-lived reality show “Ryan and Tatum: The O’Neals.” But they have since stopped trying and Tatum said she’s perfectly okay with that.

Liv Tyler

Most people with daddy issued complain of an absentee father but with Liv Tyler, she didn’t even know her father was missing from her life. That’s because she grew up thinking musician Todd Rundgren was her dad until she went to an Aerosmith concert in 1988 and saw a spitting image of herself. After seeing the uncanny resemblance between herself and Steven Tyler’s daughter Mia, the cat was out of the bag. However, Liv was very understanding. “I don’t think my dad was in any position to be a father. Steven, that is,” she said. “What an amazing thing Todd did for me…luckily, it just made me feel more loved. It meant that I had two dads instead of one.”

Angelina Jolie

Both of Angelina Jolie’s parents were actors but she has been estranged from her famous father for much of her live. Jon Voight’s infidelity broke up his marriage to Jolie’s mother and after the split, he became estranged from his daughter. They reconciled early on in her career and father and daughter appeared together in the 2001 film “Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.” But the reconciliation didn’t last and they were estranged again. Voight reached out to his daughter after her mother passed away in 2007.

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