Christie Brinkley’s children have the unique distinction of having both the worst and best stepfather in America.
Peter Cook got gonged as a bad stepfather for using his stepson Jack’s computer to look at porn and according to Alexa, he also was nasty to her. But Billy Joel gets an honorary mention as one of the best, because after he and the supermodel divorced and split custody of their daughter Alexa, Christie Brinkley remarried and had two children, Jack and Sailor. But Joel became a loving paternal figure for Alexa’s siblings. In fact, Jack and Sailor call him Uncle Billy. Which is why even though technically he isn’t a stepfather who lived with them, he has shown how elastic the heart can be in extended families and gets our honorary mention.
This list was inspired by the movie “The Stepfather” which is coming out next week. In it, the stepfather is far from a loving helpful figure. Instead, this stepfather is every child’s nightmare.
But the truth is that this depiction is now more the exception than the rule. A generation has learned what to do and not to do after divorce With the splintering of families throughout the nation, m ore and more men are living with the children of past relationships. Luckily many men show how one can love not only your own children, but your partner’s child as well as the siblings, half-siblings and stepsiblings of what is an extended family. According to the Stepfamily Foundation, 50% of all children under the age of 13 is living with one biological parent and that’s parent’s partner. And many of theses great dads who started as stepfathers later adopted the children as well.
With this in mind, we now give you the list of 5 more great stepfathers and a few who live up to the terrible stereotypes that still persist.
- Matt Damon – When he met his wife Luciana (Lucy), he also became the stepfather to her daughter Alexia. Subsequently, the couple has had two daughters together.
- Paul McCartney – His wife Linda Eastman had six-year-old Heather when the Beatle star married her. He later adopted Heather and went on to have three children with his beloved Linda, Mary, Stella and James. After Linda died, Paul married Heather Mills and they had a daughter, Beatrice together. They are now divorced. McCartney once said how after seeing Linda with her young daughter, he fell in love both with Linda and Heather.
- Seal – When he started dating Heidi Klum, she had a daughter Helene from a previous relationship with Flavio Briatore. He embraced Helene as his own and they now have three more children in the household, Henry, Johan and baby Lou who was born this weekend.
- Pierce Brosnan – He was a loving stepfather to his wife Cassandra’s children, Charlotte and Christopher. They also had a son together. When Cassandra died of ovarian cancer, Brosnan took the children as his own. Subsequently he has remarried and has two more sons, Paris and Dylan.
- Stephen Spielberg – When he married Kate Capshaw whom he met while directing “Indiana Jones,” she had a daughter Jessica from a previous marriage and had adopted a son, Theo. The couple have been married since 1991, and subsequently have four more children.
- Ashton Kutcher – When he saw how Demi Moore connected to her three daughters from her marriage to Bruce Willis, he was charmed. Now married, Kutcher is what her daughter Scout calls the coolest stepdad ever.
- Billy Joel – All around great role model for loving your ex’s kids even when you’re not the father.
- Robert Wagner – He was always in love with Natalie Wood but when they briefly divorced, she remarried and had a daughter, Natasha Gregson. They ran into each other later, realized how much they loved each other, and subsequently remarried and had a daughter, Courtney Wagner. When Wood tragically died in a freak boating accident, Wagner continued to raise Natasha, Courtney and a daughter from a previous marriage. He later married Jill St. John who has become a loving stepmother to the girls.
- Antonio Banderas – When he married Melanie Griffith, she came with two children from two different marriages. A son Alexander, and a daughter Dakota from her marriage to Don Johnson. Bandras and Griffith also have a daughter Stella together whom he adores. Griffith says that he has been a loving father to all her children.
- Brad Pitt – When he hooked up with Angelina Jolie, she had adopted two children, Maddox and Zahara. Pitt not only became their stepfather but later adopted the kids and had four more with the actress. They adopted Pax and had Shiloh, Viv and Knox making them the poster couple for a truly blended family.
Now for the a few who sadly caused more pain than gain…
- Woody Allen – Going out with the daughter of your partner Mia Farrow and then marrying the girl is just plain yucky, no matter how many years have gone by. Allen may have adopted two other children with Sun-Yi but Farrow’s other children – including Allen’s biological son – don’t talk to him.
- Peter Cook – Watching porn on the kids’ computers is gross.
- Burt Reynolds – When he lived with Sally Field – though they never married – the “Brothers and Sisters” star lamented that Reynolds wouldn’t do anything with her two boys. In fact, when she finally demanded he go sports with the boys, he hired someone else to do it.
We invite readers to give us their lists of good and bad stepfathers. Many men have been wonderful stepfathers who had enduring long lasting loving relationships with their stepchildren. In fact, the father of our country was never the natural father to any of his own biological children. George Washington was the beloved stepfather to Martha Washington daughters.