Ryan O’Neal Admits He Feels Like A Bad Father

Given the troubled past of his son Griffin – who was recently sentenced to prison due to a DUI accident – and his years of being estranged from his daughter Tatum, actor Ryan O’Neal admits he feels like a parenting failure.

On Tuesday’s episode of the Today show, the 71-year-old Love Story actor tells host Matt Lauer, “Looks like [I was a bad father], doesn’t it? I suppose I was.”

“I wasn’t trained. These are not children, anymore,” Ryan continues. “Griffin is 45, Tatum is 49. Who’s the other one? Oh yeah. Redmond is 27. At some point they have to take hold of their own existences.”

In his new book titled Both of Us: My Life With Farrah, Ryan candidly reveals some of family’s darkest moments, including a incident when a then 6-year-old Redmond threatened to stab himself with a knife in an effort to stop his parents from fighting.

“He didn’t want to see that. He couldn’t stand it,” Ryan recalls. “It stopped us, I must say. It put a stop to that and we moved the knives up higher. Harder to reach.”

Although Ryan admits that he and his late wife Farrah Fawcett – who succumbed to cancer in 2009 – had a “sometimes violent” relationship, there was a bond” that got them through the tougher times.

“I don’t think we were bad for each other because we had a rhythm that worked generally smoothly,” he says. “But I’m hard to live with. She got tired of that, I’m sure.”

“[Farrah] loved me,” Ryan adds. “She said so. I couldn’t write a book if she hadn’t.”

Ryan is also father to son Patrick, 43, with ex-wife Leigh Taylor-Young.

Filed under: Ryan O'Neal

Photo credit: Bauer Griffin

  • Anonymous9

    He doesn’t just feel like a bad father, he was a bad father. Objectively speaking, doing drugs with your 12 year old makes you a bad parent. Luckily for the oldest child, his mom kept him far away from Ryan’s influence.

    To keep the facts straight, Farrah was not his wife. She may have stayed with him too long, but she was smart enough to never marry him.

    • Anonymous

      How was Farrah smart enough to not marry him? Marriages can be un-done, children can’t be un-born. Having a child with someone who seems to have a 100% failure rate as a parent is a far worse faux pas than simply marriying some one of Ryan’s ilk. The smarter/wiser thing to do would have been to stay with Lee Majors (Ryan’s former best friend until, he ran off with Lee’s wife…..Farrah), and have a child with him. And though I’m sad that Farrah is no longer with us, she was not innocent, she ditched her husband for his friend, who had a horrible track record as a husband and father, ….. and all for nothing. They never really seemed to be happy. And it would be a miracle if Redmond lives to see 35! Ryan just may out live all of his shockingly drug addicted children. So sad.

    • Anonymous

      How was Farrah’s NOT marrying Ryan a smart thing to do, when she gave birth to yet another of his hopelessly drug addicted children?! Marrying him would’ve been the smarter, un-doable thing to do, because procreating is PERMANENT! It is so weird that all of the O’neal’s have uncontrolable addictions. Farrah knew this all along, and still stayed in the picture. Too bad she’s gone now, she was very beautiful, but had horrible tastes in men, ….. though I’ve always heard that Lee Majors is actually a very nice person. Maybe she should’ve stayed with him, and not dump him for Ryan( Lee’s former best friend).

    • NYCMommy

      The oldest child is Tatum. She and her brother Griffin were born to two drug and alcohol addicted parents. They actually lived with Ryan not mom (she was a mess). Due to these circumstancest hey had no moral guidance in their childhood. The third child (a son) was the on raise by mother so perhaps that child (Patrick) is the one you are refering to in your comment. FYI, drug and alochol addictions are genetic (so Tatum and Griffin had gene on both sides- very hard road for them)

  • Denise

    Well a duh. 3 out of 4 children have some type of addictions. Have been arrrested, in jail, in rehab, marriages that have failed. Maybe its time you stop living on cloud nine and start being a parent. It’s never too late.

  • Anonymous2

    I watched him in an interview yesterday and he sounds like such a jerk. So insincere, pretentious and full of s#*t. It’s a shame.

  • Anonymous

    Hitting on your own daughter at your girlfriend’s funeral really ranks up there on the bad parenting chart. Shooting a gun at your son at your girlfriend’s birthday party also qualifies. I don’t think there’s really any debating his poor parenting, whatever he “feels” like. I would not be surprised at all if Tatum ever revealed a history of incest.

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