He’s enjoyed a wild love life over the years, but Rod Stewart has always ensured his children are his main priority. However, while he’s been close to seven of his kids throughout their whole lives, he gave up his eldest daughter when she was just a child.
Now, in a deeply honest interview with The Australian, the rock legend, 73, has admitted while he’s now closer than ever to his daughter Sarah Streeter after mending the rift between them, their relationship will never be the same as the ones he shares with his other children.
Sarah, now in her 50s, was born when Rod was just 17 years old as the result of a teenage love affair the singer had with bohemian art student Susannah Boffey. The pair first met in a nightclub before Susannah fell pregnant, but they chose to give up the child for adoption.
“She’s in her 50s now. We don’t see much of each other, although we do keep in contact,” he told the news outlet. “She calls me Dad, and I call her my daughter, but it’s not quite the same and she knows it.
“I didn’t take her to school. I didn’t change her nappies. I didn’t do anything with her as a child. But we’re doing our best.”
It wasn’t just his age that was “scary” for Rod to come to terms with at the time, as his parents were another hurdle altogether. He explained his mother was old-fashioned so when she found out about the baby, she immediately suggested the pair marry.
“I said, ‘Well, not really, Mum,’ you know. She’s really old-fashioned. She said, ‘Well, she won’t get married in white, will she?’ I didn’t have a f***ing clue what that meant,” he admitted.
Sarah didn’t know the true identity of her famous father for years after being adopted, but after finding out, the pair have slowly built a relationship. However, she admitted to the Mail Online in 2013 that she remains estranged from her mother.
Sarah said she blames Susannah for being constantly bitter towards Rod and told the news outlet at the time: “It’s a shame she’s still so bitter and twisted, because everyone else has managed to move on. I used to be like Susannah, full of resentment, but then I realised that dwelling on the past doesn’t get you anywhere.”
Meanwhile, elsewhere in his chat with The Australian, Rod – who has a total of eight children with four women – said he’s put his wilder days behind him and is now happily settled down with wife Penny Lancaster.
He said he doesn’t miss being a “tearaway” anymore and insisted while he was often cowardly when it came to ending a relationship in the past, usually choosing to cut all contact rather than telling them directly that it was over, he has always held women in “high esteem”.