Here's Why Kelly Clarkson Stopped Trying to Connect with Her Estranged Father
Grammy award-winning songwriter and singer Kelly Clarkson never really connected with her father. Although she sang about him, Kelly only opened up about their relationship after she had children of her own.
At 20 years old, Kelly became the first American Idol in 2002. Three years later, she released the hit single “Because of You,” the first song she poured the pain she felt over her parents' divorce and her father’s abandonment of her into, at age six.
During an interview in November 2017, Kelly elaborated on the broken relationship with her father. From Fort Worth, Texas, Kelly described her family as an “American” one.
Not the only child of Jeanne Ann and Stephen Michael Clarkson, her older sister, Alyssa, stayed with her aunt after the divorce while her older brother, Jason, lived with their father for some time.
When Kelly’s mother remarried, the family grew with another five half-siblings and another two half-brothers from her father’s second marriage. But Kelly’s father wasn’t part of her life.
"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."
The pop star attempted to connect with her father, but according to Kelly, it got to the point where it became “humiliating.”
"You're like, I shouldn't have to work this hard for someone's love. Like, that's a little ridiculous," she continued. "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)."
In 2015, Kelly released “Piece by Piece,” a song that highlighted the differences between her husband as a father, and her own. During the fifteenth season of American Idol, Kelly got emotional while she performed the song on stage.
"That song for me, personally, behind the scenes, it’s evolved mostly for me. So like from the moment I wrote it, just being pregnant with my little girl and I really did try and make it work with my father and life and just get completely let down. You know he passed away months ago. So that’s why," Kelly explained.
Kelly felt sorry for her father because she didn’t know his background and the person he became made him miss out on a lot, but harbors no “hatefulness” towards him as she added:
"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, and it's OK. That's not a hateful situation. You go your own way."
However, during an interview with Forbes, Kelly admitted that she still struggled with other emotions as they spoke about her single, “Piece by Piece.
“It’s just the sense of loss that I just don’t know if I’ll ever not feel just because I’m a mom, I’m a mom of two kids that aren’t even from my womb that I still couldn’t imagine treating the way that I was. I think that was just a really hard one for me still,” she said.
The “Idols” judge became stepmom to Brandon Blackstock’s children after they got married in 2013. Initially, they met years before at the 2006 CMA Awards when Kelly performed with the Racal Flatts, and Brandon attended as the group’s tour manager.
During an interview in March 2019, Kelly Clarkson opened up about her sexuality before marriage to Brandon and the change he brought about in her.