Joe Rogan doesn’t mince words when it comes to his opinions — when he doesn’t like something, he makes sure folks know. And as a man who experienced poor parenting himself, Rogan has strong viewpoints about what makes a good parent. During an episode of The Joe Rogan Experience with Al Madrigal, Rogan opened up about how angry bad parents make him, and what he thinks they’re doing wrong.
Joe Rogan had an abusive father
During an episode of The Joe Rogan Experience with Ari Shaffir, Joe Rogan opened up about his abusive father and the impact it had on his childhood. Rogan started off by explaining the relationship between his mother and his step-father.
He said, “My mom and my step-dad are actually very happy, and they’ve been happy since I was seven years old. It’s real weird. All my damage sh*t came from my real father, before I was seven. My real father was crazy, he was like a psychotic person. He beat the f*ck out of my mother, he beat the f*ck out of my cousin. He picked my cousin up by his hair, dude.”
Rogan suggested his father’s behavior exposed him to toxic masculinity at an early age. “So that was all my sh*t from when I was like, really young. I got to see worst-case scenario, someone who just can’t keep it together, smacks women, beats the sh*t out of kids, beats the sh*t out of them,” said Rogan.
The comedian recalls a vivid memory he had of his father, who instead of comforting him, would make him promise to never cry. “My father wanted me to be like him. One time I had a fight with my cousin, because I liked King Kong and he liked Godzilla. … My dad pulled me aside, pulled me in a room, shut the door. I’ll never forget this because I was five years old. There’s very few things that I remember about him but this is one of them. … And he goes, ‘What happened?’ And you could not lie to him, there’s no lie. … ‘You didn’t cry did you?’ ‘No I didn’t cry.’ ‘Don’t ever cry.’ Then he patted me on the head and walked out of the room. I was punching everybody after that. I got the greenlight to punch kids as long as I didn’t cry,” explained Rogan.
He had to shake off his father’s idea of masculinity
Joe Rogan went on to explain that his step-dad wound up showing him that being “manly” doesn’t mean not crying, and doesn’t mean getting into fights. When Rogan’s mother and father split, she remarried a man that Joe Rogan described as a “hippie.”
“My step-dad’s a hippie. My step-dad was a computer programmer, and he was an architect, he went to school for architecture after he stopped doing computer programming. … All of a sudden I’m living with this hippie guy in San Francisco … and it’s all like peace and love, it’s the ‘70s man,” said Rogan.
He added, “The worst thing you can do to boys is to encourage them to try and hit things. … I was like four and [my dad] was teaching me how to f*ck people up, it’s crazy.”
He continued, “I was pretty humbled and really shy, and real nervous. … And all of a sudden I’m out here going what the f*ck is life.”
The type of parents Joe Rogan hates
When it comes to parenting, Rogan doesn’t have time for parents who are too wrapped up in their careers to take care of their children.
During an episode of The Joe Rogan Experience with Al Madrigal, Rogan said, “Here’s another thing that’s going on today. People think they can have a kid and have careers too. And everyone has a career. The mom has a career, the dad has a career, everybody has a career. And when are you watching the kid? Who’s watching the kid?”
When referencing an acquaintance who refused to oversee their child at a party, Rogan said, “[The] incompetence and irresponsibility were just so infuriating because I watch my kids. I watch them, I talk to them, I communicate with them. I didn’t have a good childhood so for me it’s important to be a good dad and spend as much time as I can communicating, explaining sh*t.”