Nick Cannon Defends Himself as a Father: I'm Engaged 'More Often Than the Average Adult Can Be'

The father of eight opened up to 'Men's Health' about managing time, dealing with depression, and growing from stumbles.

Nick Cannon is opening up about managing his time as a father of eight and letting it be known that he strives to be "the best father and best provider" possible. In an intimate interview with Men's Health, the entertainer spoke about living his life in the public eye throughout all his trials and tribulations, and how it's shaped the way he deals with his love life, fatherhood, depression and public stumbles. 

"I've lived my life in the public eye in a way where it’s very authentic. I kind of put it all out there," he said. "All my emotions, all my understanding or the lack thereof, as vulnerable as I could be -- I’m just like, look, I’m trying to figure it out."

Being so transparent about his journey has been both a blessing and a curse for the TV personality, especially regarding his less traditional ways of life. During an appearance on The Language of Love With Dr. Berman podcast, the 41-year-old shared details about the unorthodox relationships he has with the mothers of his children. 

Cannon is dad to 10-year-old twins Monroe and Moroccan with ex-wife Mariah Carey, 4-year-old Golden "Sagon" and 13-month-old Powerful Queen with Brittany Bell, and 7-month-old twins Zion Mixolydian and Zillion Heir with Abby De La Rosa. Tragically, Zen, whom he shared with Alyssa Scott, died in December at five months old, after a battle with brain cancer.  

He also recently announced that he is expecting his eighth child with Brie Tiesi. 

Calling himself a "lover" and a "hopeless romantic," Cannon told Dr. Berman that he struggles with the boundary between co-parenting and getting physically intimate

"Clearly if I care for someone, if I have a child with someone, there has been intimacy and there probably will continue to be intimacy because there's true authentic love there," he noted. "I have struggled with the co-parenting idea. Like, 'OK, we're just going to co-parent.' And then you find yourself in these really nice, warm family environments... And it's like, 'What is this? What are we doing? How do you define this? You know I have to do this in multiple spaces.'"

Noting that he doesn't know how to label his relationship status, Cannon said, "I don't feel like monogamy is healthy. I feel like that gets into the space of selfishness and ownership."

He admitted, "I am a better friend and companion than I am boyfriend, relationship, husband, all of it." 

He echoes that sentiment with Men's Health, saying that he's taken this approach to fatherhood and family because he's "seen where people believe a traditional household works, and [yet] there’s a lot of toxicity in that setting. It’s not about what society deems is right. It’s like, what makes it right for you? What brings your happiness? What allows you to have joy and how you define family? We all define family in so many different ways."

And when it comes to him as a father, Cannon is adamant that he does everything he can to provide his children with his time and attention.

"Contrary to popular belief, I’m probably engaged throughout my children’s day, more often than the average adult can be," he declared. "If I’m not physically in the same city with my kids, I’m talking to them before they go to school via FaceTime and stuff. And then when I am [in the same city, I’m] driving my kids to school, like making sure I pick ’em up."

He added: "All of those things, making sure [I’m there for] all extracurricular activities. I’m involved in everything from coaching to having guitar lessons with my daughter every week.”

Will Cannon have more children in the future? That question is not on his mind. 

"I love my children. I love the people that I’m involved with," he explained. "People even often ask, 'Are you gonna have more, you gonna stop?' I’m like, those are questions that I don’t, I don’t really even sit around and think about. I’m just walking in my purpose and trying to be the best father and best provider I could possibly be."

In the meantime, Cannon said he isn't dwelling on setbacks, musing that "every loss makes every win so much greater."

"Everybody stumbles. I haven’t seen anybody do it perfect," he added. "I take those stumbles as lessons learned and how to keep pushing along so you don’t stop. The only real failure is when you stop."

Read the full interview at Men's Health