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Kelly Clarkson on absentee father: 'It's hard to miss something you never had'

The singer opens up about how she gave up on reaching out to her dad after all her rebuffed efforts almost became "humiliating."
/ Source: TODAY

Kelly Clarkson has opened up about her relationship with her absentee father, explaining that she stopped trying to connect with him once it almost became “humiliating” that he never responded to her.

During a recent interview on a Scandinavian talk show, the singer described growing up with "different sets" of family after her parents divorced. She said her father never really kept in touch with her afterward.

“I know a lot of people go, ‘Aww,’ but it’s not really that situation," she said. "I think If you don’t grow up with it, it’s hard to miss something you never had.”

Clarkson said she tried numerous times to reach out to her dad, particularly for an older brother who hoped for a unified family, but said she only got hurt from the effort.

“Even if it’s not your father, whoever it is in your life, if someone presents such a cancerous environment and then just keeps hurting you, and even if they’re doing it inadvertently and they just don’t know better, you should just not have that person in your life,” she said. “And it’s OK. That’s not a hateful situation. You go your own way.”

Asked when she decided to finally stop reaching out to him, Clarkson said it became evident "when something almost becomes humiliating."

“You’re like, I shouldn’t have to work this hard for someone’s love. Like, that’s a little ridiculous,” she said. “And at that point, too, you grow up so much to where you go, okay, I don’t even think you’re capable (of love).”

Clarkson, who has two children and two stepchildren, has said in the past that growing up without a father has given her a deep appreciation for the bond her husband, Brandon Blackstock, has with his kids.

In her talk show interview, Clarkson said she finds it “sad” that her father has missed out on the joys of getting to know her children, as well as her siblings, but harbors no resentment.

“In fairness to him, I don’t know his life, how he grow up, and I don’t know if he’s repeating a cycle that was once taught to him,” she said. “I have no hatefulness. No anger. No nothing, about it.”