Eminem isn’t a typical rapper and he certainly isn’t a typical celebrity in the entertainment world, either. At this point in his career, I’m sure that’s something we all know very well. He likes to push boundaries and say things other people would never dare to say. He’s an icon, a talented rapper and someone who definitely deserves the recognition he’s so far gotten in his life.
With that being said though, Eminem is definitely not your typical father and family man, either. While there are plenty of celebrity children who move on to become Instagram celebrities or reality television stars, that’s not the case for Eminem and his three daughters: Hailie Jade, Whitney Scott Mathers, and Alaina Marie Mathers.
That’s because he’s a different kind of celebrity father. His family life is the most important thing for him and throughout the years he’s done a damn good job of keeping his kids grounded, despite his fame. He’s also done one hell of a job keeping them away from the spotlight, too.
Here are 15 things that Eminem doesn’t want you to know about his family life. You’d be surprised to hear some of the things he has to say about being a dad and growing up without one, too.
15. Personal And Private Matters
There’s no denying that Eminem is one of the hardest working rappers in the business. He’s been at the top for almost two decades now and from what we can tell, he’s not going anywhere, anytime soon. That’s because he knows how to separate his personal life from his career. He’s very organized and head-strong and knows what is appropriate and what’s not, despite his reputation if you know what we mean.
Em once said, “I'm busy, and I stay busy, but I want to remain in control of things where I can stay in the city and go home at night to my kids. I'm a father before anything else, and anybody who knows me knows that that's the most important thing to me, that I can be close to my kids, and be there.”
14. He Teaches His Daughters About Equality
At this point, I’m sure we’ve all heard the nasty things that Eminem has said about his on-again, off-again ex, Kim Scott. It’s all in his lyrics. Those two have had a rollercoaster relationship and his fans have seen the good, the bad, and the downright ugly. But believe it or not, Eminem believes in equality. He treats everyone the same, regardless of where they come from. And that’s something he’s always taught his kids, too. And let's not forget: he once said that he is an “equal opportunity offender,” which means if he has something to say about you, you better believe it that he will say it.
He was once quoted as saying, “I don't care if you're black, white, straight, bisexual, gay, lesbian, short, tall, fat, skinny, rich or poor. If you're nice to me, I'll be nice to you. Simple as that.”
13. He Is Protective Over His Daughters
Eminem has had a very icy relationship with women. He’s done a good job of offending the female population with his antics and some of the crazy things he has said in the past. But when it comes to his immediate family, it’s a whole different story. He is very protective of his daughters and wants to give them everything he didn’t have as a child himself.
Speaking about Kim and the kids, he has said, “I just want her and my immediate family — my daughter, my niece and my little brother — to have things I didn't have: love and material things. But I can't just buy them things. I have to be there. That's a cop-out if I just popped up once in a while, didn't have custody of my daughter and my niece.”
12. Full Custody
Eminem has basically been a single father throughout his life. He’s always had full custody of his kids and has done a good job of raising them. They are smart, well poised and very well educated. You have to give credit where credit is due and let us just say that Em did amazing work as a dad.
When the girls were little, Em said, “I have full custody of my niece and joint custody of Hailie. It's no secret what's been going on over the past year with my ex-wife. I wouldn't down-talk her, but with her bein' on the run from the cops I really had no choice but to just step up to the plate. I was always there for Hailie, and my niece has been a part of my life ever since she was born. Me and Kim pretty much had her, she'd live with us wherever we was at.”
11. Difficult Beginnings
Eminem has made it no secret that he didn’t have it easy as a child. As a matter of fact, he’s often described his childhood as being awful and blames most of it on his mom. His family didn’t have money, he didn’t have a stable life and during some moments, he didn’t even have a place to call home. He’s also seen things that no children should see, but for Eminem, it was part of his daily reality. That’s why he has always been so determined to raise his daughters right and be the father that he never had himself.
He once said, “I've seen my little brother bounce around a lot from foster home to foster home. My little brother was taken away by the state when he was eight, nine.”
10. A Double Life
Just like any other dad, Eminem has learned from his mistakes. But at the same time, he’s never lost his focus. Believe it or not, he has fantastic paternal instincts. His main priority was always to teach his daughters right from wrong.
He told Rolling Stone in an interview back in 2004, “Bein' a dad is definitely living a double life. As far back as I can remember, even before Hailies was born, I was a firm believer in freedom of speech. I never wanted to compromise that, my artistic integrity, but once I hit them gates where I live, that's when I'm Dad. Takin' the kids to school, pickin' 'em up, teachin' 'em rules. I'm not sayin' I'm the perfect father, but the most important thing is to be there for my kids and raise them the right way.”
9. Troubles With Kim
When we say that Eminem was a single father, we sure as heck mean it. He once had to explain to his daughter Hallie why her mother wasn’t around as often as she should have been. For the longest time, he was forced to pull double duty.
He said, “Kim has been in and out of jail and on house arrest, cut her tether off, had been on the run from the cops for quite a while. Tryin' to explain that to my niece and my daughter was one of the hardest things I ever had to go through. You can never let a child feel like it's her fault for what's goin' on. You just gotta let her know: ‘Mom has a problem, she's sick, and it's not because she doesn't love you. She loves you, but she's sick right now, and until she gets better, you've got Daddy. And I'm here.’”
8. But He’s Got Nothing But Respect For Kim
Eminem might not have gotten along with his baby mama Kim, but he always wanted to set a good example in front of his daughters. Unlike his own mother, he never once bad-mouthed Kim in front of the girls. Sure, he did it in his lyrics, but never behind closed doors.
He explained, “We've still gotta show each other that mutual respect. I can't walk around the house tryin' to mess with Hailie's head, saying, "Your mom's wrong." I used to get caught up with that with my mother, as far as saying bad things about any boyfriend she had that I liked. I don't wanna get them caught up in "Your mom's wrong," and then Hailie goes to see her mother, who says, "Your dad's an asshole." We don't do that. It's about raising these kids. She's out now. And hopefully she can get her life back in order. Before anything, it's gotta be for these kids. She knows it, I know it.”
7. He Never Lost His Temper
This might be hard to believe, but Eminem says that he’s always tried not to lose his temper in front of his kids. He might be angry in his lyrics, but at home, he’s always tried to keep his cool.
Eminem put it this way, “Teach them right from wrong as best I can, try not to lose my temper, try to set guidelines and rules and boundaries. Never lay a hand on them. Let them know it's not right for a man to ever lay his hands on a female. Despite what people may think of me and what I say in my songs — you know, me and Kim have had our moments — I'm trying' to teach them and make them learn from my mistakes. It's almost like juggling — juggling the rap life and fatherhood.”
6. Emotional Dad
There are a lot of things that Eminem has done and said in the past. But if there’s one thing that he’s never done, it’s abandon his daughters. He’s not that kind of person, despite what you may think of him. He’s also a very emotional dad, believe it or not. He pours his heart out at home and in his songs, too.
Speaking about his song lyrics, Em said, “When Kim was on the run they didn't understand it, and I'm not the greatest talker in the world, especially when I'm trying to explain to two little girls what's goin' on with someone who's always been a part of their life and just disappeared. So that was my song to explain to them what was goin' on, probably the most emotional song I ever wrote.”
5. Eminem As The School Dad
Eminem might not have had an education himself, but for his daughters, school is the most important thing in the world. It’s no wonder his daughter Hailie recently graduated with top honors. Eminem was very proactive in his children’s school life, too. He’s always emphasized the importance of getting a good education. Plus, you don’t hear about too many celebrity kids going to and graduating from college, right?
Eminem explained, “School is different. In school, when they have plays, field trips, all that stuff, I don't miss them, even if I gotta deal with the craziness. And the teachers are really good about telling the kids, ‘When Hailie's dad comes in, he's Hailie's dad, Mr. Mathers.’ Last year I went and read to the class. Two books. It was reading month or something.”
4. Breaking Family Ties
As much as Eminem loves his daughters, he feels much differently about his other family members, though. He’s broken ties with many of them (including his own mother) and has kept his distance. Because there is so much bad blood, Hailie, Whitney, and Alaina have not had much contact with their extended family. Because he was hurt so often by them, Eminem has always felt the need to protect his daughters from his family, as sad as that sounds. He did it for their own good.
Eminem said rather bluntly, “I say what I want to say and do what I want to do. There's no in between. People will either love you for it or hate you for it. My family has never been there for me. They expect things because we’re blood.”
3. But He Did Have Good Role Models
Sure, Eminem has had a lot of nasty things to say about his family. But he did have one aunt and uncle from his father’s side that treated him like the son they never had. And for that, Eminem has always been very grateful.
He said, “My Aunt Edna, which would be my great-aunt Edna, and my Uncle Charles, my great-uncle Charles. This was in Missouri. They're from my dad's side. They took care of me a lot. My Uncle Charles passed in '92 or '93, and Aunt Edna passed away just six months ago. She was, like, eighty-six. They were older, but they did things with me; they let me stay the weekends there, took me to school, bought me things, let me stay and watch TV, let me cut the grass to get five dollars, took me to the mall. Between them and my Uncle Ronnie, they were my solidity.”
2. Living Without A Foundation
While there’s no doubt that a lot of things can be said about Eminem, one thing is for certain: he’s very talented and he’s also very intelligent. Unfortunately, he grew up without a solid foundation. That’s why he’s always worked double as hard to give his girls a proper childhood and the one that he always wished he had.
Em said, “I don’t like to give the sob story: growing up in a single-parent home, never knew my father, my mother never worked, and when friends came over I’d hide the welfare cheese. Yo, I failed ninth grade three times, but I don’t think it was necessarily ’cause I’m stupid. I didn’t go to school. I couldn’t deal. We just kept moving back and forth because my mother never had a job. We kept getting kicked out of every house we were in. I believe six months was the longest we ever lived in a house.”
1. His Regrets
Eminem has been in the business for as long as we can remember. And thankfully, his daughters have never, ever had a scandal or done anything controversial in public. But Eminem does have his regrets. He recently admitted that he wishes he could start over and talk less about his personal matters. He also wishes that he didn’t speak so candidly about his problems with Kim. He also publicly apologized to both Kim and Hailie for airing out their dirty laundry during the prime of his career.
One of the best things Eminem has ever said was, “The same friends I had back then are the same people on tour with me now. I do say things that I think will shock people. But I don’t do things to shock people. I’m not trying to be the next Tupac, but I don’t know how long I’m going to be on this planet. So while I’m here, I might as well make the most of it.”