The Softer Side of Judge Judy: At Home With Her Grandkids

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Judge Judy Sheindlin may be tough in the courtroom, but with her 13 grandchildren, she's a huge softie.

"I spoil them," Judge Judy said. "I'm trying to think of how we don't, but the answer is we do. We don't even think we're doing it, but their parents are very smart. They try to put the skids on it."

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Judge Judy devoted her first children's book, Win or Lose by How You Choose, to helping kids and their parents. Her honor and husband Jerry Sheindlin honed their parenting by raising five children.

"Working parents bring a certain amount of guilt to their relationship with their children," Judge Judy admitted.

Her five children would unintentionally send her on guilt trips growing up, she shared. One example she gave was the issue of lunch. The Sheindlin children pleaded for a hot lunch from home like some of their friends.

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"I said, 'You want a hot lunch? Put slice of pizza on the radiator and you too will have a hot lunch,'" Judge Judy said.

Judge Judy had much more inspiring words for the kids at Shiprock High School earlier this month. At the New Mexico high school's graduation she delivered a nearly-20 minute commencement speech, sharing personal advice on how to succeed after students receive their diplomas.

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"A combination of tenacity and luck brought me here today," the 72-year-old judge said. "I was an unremarkable student with passable looks and a direct personality. Nothing in my early childhood suggested to anyone -- except maybe my father -- that one day I would be standing here and be known simply as Judge Judy."