Mark Consuelos on His Strict Parenting Style: Being Friends 'With My Kids Isn't in the Cards'

by Raphael Chestang 7:14 PM PDT, June 16, 2015
Photo: Getty Images

Mark Consuelos doesn't care if his kids like him or not.

The 44-year-old actor is a father to 18-year-old Michael, 14-year-old Lola and 12-year-old Joaquin, and he told Men's Health that he's taking an old-school approach to parenting, a philosophy his wife Kelly Ripa also shares.

NEWS: Kelly Ripa's Parenting Philosophy

"These days, my dad and I are good friends," Mark said. "We talk all the time and have great conversations. I can't afford to be like that with my kids at this point. Being friends with my kids just isn't in the cards. I have to be like my dad was with me."

Mark jokingly described his dad as "Pancho Villa and Saddam Hussein wrapped into one."

"When you're a father, your main concern is whether your kids are being polite or doing well in school," Mark explained. "When you're constantly hoping they're not out there getting murdered or getting caught up in drugs, you can really lose sight of the fun part of parenting."

NEWS: 8 Celebrity Kids Embarrassed by Their Famous Parents

The biggest lesson Mark learned from his dad growing up was to just to be there for the people he cares about.

"It's easy to make up excuses for why you can't or won't do something, but that doesn't help anyone," Mark said. "Your word is your word. If you say you're going to do something, do it. If you say you're going to be somewhere, show up."

"My dad showed up for me, and I'm showing up for my kids," Mark continued. "That's what it means to become a better man. Show up."

NEWS: You Named Your Kid What?! Bizarre Celebrity Family Names

Mark's view on parenting is in line with that of his wife. Kelly told Wendy Williams last year that her daughter isn't a huge fan of hers.

"I don't think she likes me, but I don't care," Kelly said. "I'm like, 'I'm not your friend. I'm your mom.' I just feel an obligation as her mom to keep her living in the real world. I don't care who you are or what you do, if you're a mom, you're a mom."