I sometimes wonder if being rich and famous goes hand-in-hand with disowning and estrangement. Do we just know about these stories because they are in the public eye or does it happen more often because ego—either the parent’s or the child’s– becomes more important than unconditional love?
Here are just a few examples:
Neil Diamond’s father disowned him for several years, supposedly because he pursued singing over the path his father wanted him to take. This was the theme of the movie Jazz Singer. Eventually they reconciled.
Jerry Lee Lewis disowned his son. Whether he was disowned for speaking publicly about his father hitting him or for having a drug problem is unclear. The son eventually died of a drug overdose and still Jerry Lee Lewis wanted nothing to do with him.
A royal family in India disowned their son Prince Manvendra Singh Gohil for being gay. His story was told on Oprah.
JK Rowling is estranged from her father.
Meg Ryan is estranged from her mother.
Tatum O’Neal was estranged from her father Ryan O’Neal. Drugs on his part were allegedly part of the problem as reported in a reality TV series.
My father disowned me. His ego. His fame. Our loss.