A few months back, Kim Kardashian took to Instagram to show off son Saint West's first baby bomber jacket- a custom made Ralph Lauren number, surely costlier than most people's mortgage. Sigh. It seems so many things about mothering would be easier if there were endless piles of cash on hand. First, you could provide a safe, secure life for your offspring. The children of stars can afford to go to all the best schools, and are afforded top-notch healthcare and services. Celebrities live in the grandest neighborhoods, eat organic vegetables, and wear the most fashionable clothing. On top of that, stars have access to good help, for the times the do need to work. So, how could raising a child go so wrong when you have such a cushy set-up?
Easily. Money doesn't parent a child. While healthy finances help to contribute to a comfortable life, a mother must provide much more--love, care, discipline, affection, rules, and limits. It often seems as if celebrities are often too busy, too distracted, and too concerned with their own bottom line to do the cost-efficient, but very difficult work of Mothering.
Also, the personality traits that make a star famous don't necessarily transfer into the role of "Good Mom". The fiery star ego that needs constant stroking can often leave a child without enough attention. An actress's drive to succeed can leave a child alone for hours, or even days at a time. Additionally, many celebrities treat their children like arm candy, and parade them out in public view, only hoping to increase their own wattage. Most tragically, life in the limelight can be taxing, and drive a mother to escape into a world of drugs and alcohol. There is no shortage of bad celebrity mothers out there, and today we focus on fifteen of the worst.
15 Kris Jenner
Kris Kardashian, mom to Kim, Khloe, Kourtney, Kendall, Kylie, and KRob (I’ll bestow the forgotten child with a letter K) manages all six of her children’s careers. I'm gonna let you know right now that we can blame this woman for taking her daughter’s sex tape and running to the bank with it. Yup. First there was the show, “Keeping Up With the Kardashians”, followed by the development of each crazy cottage which bears the Kardashian name. There are commercials, perfumes, apps, books, retail stores, and a make-up line. Add to that licensing deals with Pacsun, Steve Madden, OPI, Lancome, Land Roger, and Sugar Factory. I could keep going, but I won’t. It's already too much. Hey, I applaud Mama K’s business sense, but I don’t agree with the overexposure she foisted on the entire family. It’s icky cultural saturation, and there are days I want nothing more than to see them vanish, and have tubs of Clorox wipes left in their place.
Remember when Madonna wore slutty lace skirts, posed provocatively, and shot of series of naked photos for a coffee-table book she called, “Sex”? No? I do, but it does seem like a lifetime ago.
In recent years, Madonna has been in the news for her high-profile divorce from Guy Ritchie. Coming on the heels of that has been the highly visible custody battle over her son Rocco, and the tawdry information about Madonna’s parenting style that was brought to light during testimony
Apparently, at the end of last summer, Rocco waned to break his parent’s custody agreement and remain in London with his bohemian father. He cited Madonna’s controlling nature, which includes strict adherence to a macrobiotic diet and no TV. This lifestyle was verified over a decade ago by Madonna in a Newsweek interviews in which she said daughter Lourdes got in trouble for being sloppy and had to “earn back clothes,” even “wearing the same outfit every day to school until she learns her lesson.”
Madonna fought the change in custody, claiming she was “disturbed” by pictures she saw of he son apparently smoking a joint in a London skate park. Eventually, Madonna gave in, and Rocco now lives in London full-time.
13 Farrah Abraham
Farrah Abraham rose to fame as a cast member on 16 and Pregnant, and Teen Mom. Though her turns on both shows ended a few years back, Abraham has stayed relevant with her porn career (Farrah Superstar: Backdoor Teen Mom, and Farrah 2: Backdoor and More) and her controversial parenting to eight-year-old daughter, Sophia.
When Sophia was three, Farrah took heat when she admitted that she waxed the preschoolers unibrow. Back in 2014, Farrah was discussing her daughter and was quoted saying, “I Have by own life and (I’m) doing ( my) own thing. She has her own life and she does her own thing.” Um… the child was 5. When Sophia lost her first tooth, Farrah blasted the event on social media, including the brag that the tooth fairy gifted $600 for the tooth. A year ago, Sophia was allowed to join Snapchat. I would really hate to see a legacy performance by Sophia on 16 and Counting, but if her mom doesn't step up her parenting game, it seems a distinct possibility.
12 Courtney Love
It’s been a rocky road of parenting for singer Courtney Love. The former Hole singer, and widow of Nirvana’s Curt Cobain, found out she was pregnant while doing heroin. Frances Bean Cobain was born in August 1992 , and two weeks after her birth was placed in temporarily custody with Love’s sister. In 1994, Kurt Cobain committed suicide, leaving Courtney to care for their child. But it wasn’t easy for Courtney. Throughout the mid 1990s, Love continued to use several drugs and face run ins with the law. Finally, in 2003, during a time in which Love admitted she was addicted to cocaine and prescription drugs, she lost permanent custody of 11-year-old Frances.
Only in the last few years have mother and daughter attempted a serious reconciliation. In 2016, the two stepped out for a bit of shopping in London. In pictures, the two carry shopping bags and bleak faces.
11 Britney Spears
This is going to be long. Stay with me. Ready? In 2004, Britney Spears met and married back-up dancer Kevin Federline, and in 2005 delivered her first of two children, Sean Preston. A year later, Britney was photographed driving a car with her infant son on her lap, and when investigated by police, blamed chasing paparazzi. Two months later, the child fell out of his high chair and sustained a fractured skull. (When she said “hit me baby, one more time,” we didn’t think the request would extend to her child!)
Once again, Britney didn’t take responsibility for the baby snafu, and instead blamed the nanny. A few short months later, Britney announced her second pregnancy, and in September 2006, Son Jayden James was born. Not one to sit in a rocker and knit a sweater, Britney kept up her partying ways, which eventually led to a split with Federline. Following this was a custody fight, capped by three rapid rehab check-ins and check-outs. A final breakdown (complete with a self-administered head shave) resulted in a 72-hour involuntary hold at a mental facility. In October 2007, after another string of reckless driving and poor behavior, a judge order Britney to hand the kids over to Federline. I’m tired from that. You?
In the last two years, it appears that Britney has grown up. She regained primary custody of the boys, now aged 11 and 10, and in Instagram pictures, they trio look adorably happy and healthy.
10 Kate Moss
The supermodel was discovered by an agent at JFK when she was 14 years old and shot to fame in the early 1990s.
In 2002, Kate and ex-boyfriend Jefferson Hack welcomed daughter Lila Grace into the world. But having a daughter didn’t stop Kate’s hard living ways. In 2005, Kate was photographed snorting cocaine. Her public image took a hit, and shortly after the scandalous images hit the media, Kate entered Meadows Clinic in Arizona, missing her daughter’s third birthday party.
In recent years, 42-year-old Kate's career and image have recovered. But, a 2015 incident aboard a easyJet flight--she was booted for drinking her own vodka and acting belligerent--leaves many to wonder if things have changed enough. In an interview daughter Lila Grace was asked if her mother was her idol. She responded, “No, like every mum she’s embarrassing and annoying but you love them really.”
9 Joan Crawford
This is the Terrible Mom story that started it all. For a little backstory for younger readers, Joan Crawford was a queen of the golden screen. Back in 1925, Joan signed a lucrative deal with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and stared along other greats like Greta Garbo and Norma Shearer. She often played dream roles as the plucky woman who was always successful in love and life.That was the narrative of the time and most people believed the actress was a happy person, and a wonderful mother to her four adopted children.
But in 1977, Joan’s oldest adopted daughter Christina published Mommie Dearest, a “tell-all” memoir that portrayed Joan as a loveless mother. Christina claims her mother made crazy demands on he children, and seemed more interested in working on her film career than she did raising her children. When Joan died, both Christina and her brother Christopher were left out of her will.
The movie adaptation of Mommie Dearest, staring Faye Dunnaway, hit the screens in 1981. It was an instant success, and included the now-famous scene where Joan wakes up daughter Christina to chastise her for a unkempt closet. “No wire hangers! EVER!”
8 Kate Gosselin
I often wonder what might have happened had John and Kate Gosselin stopped at two children. Would the couple still be married? Would Kate be happier? Because really, who wouldn’t lose their minds having sextuplets?
Through the years, Kate’s kids looked slightly horrified to appear on camera—and with reason. On John and Kate plus 8, Kate constantly appeared annoyed with her brood and seemed to enjoy emasculating husband John. Once John split, Gosselin took out her frustration and tough expectations on her eight children. She's appeared on talk shows openly aggravated with her twins Cara and Madi, and in early 2015 child protective services was brought in to investigate alleged abusive treatment of son Collin, one of her sextuplets.
7 Gwyneth Paltrow
The actress and purveyor of needlessly expensive luxury items ( vaginal steams, $15,000 gold vibrator) has two children with ex-husband and Coldplay lead singer, Chris Martin. In 2010, Gwyn, who once studied in Spain, attended a party where she scolded her children for speaking English. It has also been reported that Gwyn does not let her children watch cartoons and once said her children had hunger pains because they craved carbs. More Recently, she claimed that she’s relaxed her diet rules and now allows Apple and Moses to eat "bad" food. "I don’t believe in saying, 'You're not allowed that,’" she insisted. "If my kids want a Shirley Temple with the radioactive cherry in it, go for it, you know?" Wow! I’m just glad she wasn’t suggesting they join her for her next intimate spa treatment.
6 Michelle Duggar
I applaud Michelle for many things.. I mean, really, those Duggar girls sure can fold a load of whites and rock a knee-length denim skirt. In all seriousness though, the kids do seem kind, respectful, and law-abiding. OH, WAIT! I forgot about Josh! And that's where my problem with Michelle Duggar comes in. It's awful enough that Josh molested his sisters, but what's worse is that Mama Michelle didn't admit the severity of what happened, or go to great lengths to prevent further abuse. When authorities came to investigate the molestation of four of the Duggar sisters, Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar denied any wrong-doing on their son’s part, and sent Josh to live with a family friend for a while. Say what? By downgrading the abuse into “improper touching”and not seeking proper treatment for Josh, Michelle Duggar invalidated the trauma that was inflicted upon her daughters, and quite literally left the door open for Josh to abuse again.
5 Nadya Suleman
Coined The Octomom, Nadya Suleman gave birth to octuplets in January 2009. The six boys and two girls are only the second full set of octuplets born in the United States. What catapulted Nadya to fame however, was the crazy set of circumstances surrounding the birth. At the time, Nadya was single, and already had six kids. If that's not enough to leave you scratching your head (she wanted MORE kids?), Nadya was unemployed, receiving public assistance and conceived using pricy IVF treatments. Mind blown.
Nadya struggled with the workload of her huge family, even saying in a June 2011 interview, “I hate babies, they disgust me…Obviously I love them—but I absolutely wish I had not had them.” Oh dear. Now, let’s do the math and realize that at 15 months old, the children were probably quite the handful. But Lady, you wanted this!
In the years following the octuplets birth, Octomom struggled to provide for her fourteen children, and ultimately resorted to stripping and staring in a porn video. Recent photographs show Nadya and her large brood looking fit and happy. In an interview Nadya, who now works a regular job and goes by the name Natalie, says she hated the Octomom title, adding, “It’s haunted us”.
4 Jaid Barrymore
This story is from the Mother of Celebrities File. Drew Barrymore shot to fame at the age of seven, when she stared in ET. Two years later, she was a regular at bars and clubs, smoking cigarettes. At nine years old, Drew was drinking, and by twelve, the actress had moved on to smoking marijuana. At thirteen, she was snorting cocaine. This all leads one to wonder-- WHERE was this poor girl’s mother? This will floor you. Ready? Jaid Barrymore was engaging in these activities with her daughter!
But the party didn’t last. At fourteen, Drew was sent to rehab, whee she ended up being institutionalized for eighteen months. Upon release, Drew attempted suicide, which sent her back to rehab. During the late 1980s, Drew fought to remain sober and each time she relapsed, she hid the incident from her mom, which caused more friction and led to a long estrangement. Drew eventually regained solid control of her sobriety. In 2009, she said she was successfully working on a new relationship with her mom,
3 Brooke Mueller
If you are tough enough to party till you puke with Charlie Sheen, and then willing to commit to that same lifestyle within a marriage, we might have reason to question whether you’re ready to raise children. Brooke Mueller, a real estate flipper, socialite buddy of Paris Hilton, and star of low-budget film Strictly Sexual, married Charlie Sheen in 2008, and bore the couples twins, Bob and Max, in 2009. Only nine months after the twins were born, Sheen was arrested for domestic abuse, followed by the couple’s divorce a year later. Winning!
Since 2010, Mueller has lost and regained custody of the twins several times, and has committed more than a dozen stints in rehab. During rehab visits, Charlie Sheen’s ex Denise Richards has been known to take care of Mueller’s twins. As recently as January, Mueller was back in rehab, but has said she is "on the path to recovery every day”.
2 Mariah Carey
Pop icon and seemingly difficult diva Mariah Carey is mom to twins Moroccan and Monroe, her children with adorable and seemingly sweet ex-husband, Nick Cannon. The five-octave range singer spends a lavish amount of time and energy on herself, and according to an ex nanny who filed a lawsuit against Mariah, isn’t home with the children very much. The nanny claims she spent up to 100 hours a week (some unpaid), caring for the then infant children and was forced out of the job because she showed the children too much affection. Mariah went so far as to admit that she goes through nannies quickly. “I fire nannies like this,” she said, and snapped her fingers. “But I have to because they try to make themselves more important in the babies’ minds than me.” I wonder if Mariah ever realized how lucky she was to have such good care for her children, or to consider the fact that babies are pretty easy to love.
1 Kim Kardashian
You had to see this coming. Like the saying goes, Like Mother, Like Daughter. While Kris Jenner seems hellbent on fame and fortune, sacrificing the soul of her family for both, I’m not sure her daughter Kim is a bad mother as much as she is an absent one.
Kim Kardashian has two children with Kanye West. From the time North West (3) and South West, Oops, Saint West (1) were born, heck, even while they were in the womb, Kim was parading her children on Instagram and Snapchat. It's not surprising that Kim was the victim of a jewel heist in Paris last year, and hopefully since then she has become a bit more discreet on social media.
Additionally, Kim is often away from her children, engaging in business endeavors, photo shoots and shopping. During this time, the children are in the care of nannies, who have a twenty-page book of rules. Supposedly, both children attend a daily two-hour “baby gym” session and have special moisturizer applied by a nanny five time a day. On top of that, North receives a daily massage, complete with directions and diagrams so that it’s done effectively.
I’m exhausted just hearing about these wee toots full days. Something tells me these kids would be just as relaxed, and a whole lot happier, if Kim handed them each an ice cream cones and they all sat by the pool, together.
Sources: TheSun.com, DailyMail.com, TheGuardian, TheDailyBeast.com