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Sir Elton John has a pretty infamous history of sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll, but he recently admitted that it’s fatherhood that has really helped him to confront his demons.
The singer performed at the London Palladium on Monday, where he was honored with a Brits Icon Award. In between songs, the audience was treated to surprise video messages from friends and colleagues, along with candor from the man himself about his past and his present.
It’s obvious that no matter what has happened in his life, he’s now a family man. He credited his partner of 20 years, David Furnish, along with their sons Zachary, aged 2, and Elijah, 9 months, for helping him stay clean and sober, as well as keeping his temper in check.
We’re all monsters sometimes. I’ve changed a lot, I’ve done a lot of work on myself .... My partner has helped me and confronted me on issues, and helped me become a better person.
He also shared:
Having the children is just the icing on the cake. You have to behave yourself around them. You can’t swear; you can’t do this, because it will reflect on their behavior ... it’s the best thing that’s happened to me in my life. My partner is damned near that because he’s been with me nearly 20 years.
It’s so true! It doesn’t matter if your closet is full of skeletons or just a few cobwebs, becoming a parent changes you.
Side note: I say “becoming a parent” rather than “having kids” because I’ve known plenty of people that have procreated that don’t seem to have any interest in parenting. But that’s a topic for another day.
Anyway. When you have these little people looking up to you to set an example, it makes you want to be a better person. Sometimes it forces you to be. No late night partying happening with babies at home except for the one in the nursery at 2 a.m.
But those little ones are so worth it, or as Sir Elton puts it, the icing on the cake. Congrats on 23 years sober, good man -- your kids deserve it. Here’s to many more!
How has having kids made you a better person?
Image via David Shankbone/Flickr