Kelly Clarkson Talks ‘Emotional Roller Coaster,’ Abandonment Issues Prior to Divorce Filing
By Rachel McRady
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Kelly Clarkson was an open book prior to her divorce filing. The 38-year-old singer and talk show host was interviewed on a previously taped episode of the British web series Glamour Unfiltered, and dialed in via Zoom from her Montana cabin, where she and her family were quarantining early on in the coronavirus pandemic.
Clarkson has since returned to Los Angeles and filed for divorce from her husband of six years, Brandon Blackstock. During her Glamour Unfiltered interview, the American Idol alum opened up about what she'd been struggling with in recent months.
"Honestly, I have been on an emotional roller coaster. This has been really hard as a working parent, because I'm still doing all the same jobs," Clarkson told Glamour's Josh Smith of life in quarantine. "It's been exhausting honestly, cooking every meal and cleaning nonstop after toddlers and teenagers! Everybody's learning from home now and the teaching! So, everything has been crazy."
The mother of two, who also helped raise Blackstock's two teenage children from a previous relationship, added that her role at home was exceedingly challenging in these unprecedented times.
"I'm literally holding down so many things right now. Not only jobs, but even things where we usually had a lot more help," she explained. "We are fortunate, so I'm not complaining in that sense, but I've definitely had to tell people that I work with, 'You hired a mom and I'm not an absentee mom. I'm a full-on mom.' I already have abandonment issues, so I don't want to pass those down."
Clarkson also opened up about her struggles with abandonment that go back to her estranged relationship with her late father.
"I don't think you get rid of that. I have people in my life that suffer from addiction to certain things and that doesn't go away. It's always there," she said. "It's just navigating your life around that existence in your life. You don't ever one day wake up and are like, 'OK, I'm totally cool with the fact that I have major abandonment issues because horrible things happened.' That’s why I write songs about it and you connect with all these people that you don't know."
She even gave some insight into how her past shaped her 2013 wedding to Blackstock, 43.
"You get married and you're like, 'Oh, I have no one for the dance or to walk me down the aisle. You know what? I'm not going to get married, just going to elope,'" she said.
Clarkson mentioned her husband later in the interview when talking about body image and insisting on never posing naked as she was pressured to do at a young age.
"Even in my thinnest, most fit moment, it's just not my personality to be naked on the front of a magazine. Mind you, my husband will tell you, I am totally OK with nudity," she shared. "I think it is a beautiful thing. I think all of our bodies, whether you're male or female, we are very beautiful beings."
Clarkson noted that she felt "more pressure" from people in her life when she was "really thin and not super healthy."
"Honestly, at my heaviest point, I was hired to be on The Voice. I got on the number one television show at my heaviest point, because it was right after I had kids and it was like they didn't care."
The "Heartbeat Song" singer also mentioned fellow vocal powerhouse Adele, who recently made headlines for her physical transformation.
"I met Adele a long time ago and that girl is like a goddess. I don't care what kind of weight she's holding down; you walk in the room and she's like a force, just physically captivating," Clarkson said of the British GRAMMY winner. "If someone wanted to do it for themselves and for their health but that doesn't change how many times I listened to her record."
Clarkson might be listening to Adele's breakup anthems more often since filing for divorce from Blackstock in Los Angeles on June 4. The former couple are parents to 5-year-old daughter River and 4-year-old son Remington. Clarkson has requested joint legal and physical custody of River and Remington.