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Metallica Frontman James Hetfield: ‘Being a Parent Is So Hard’

Metallica’s James Hetfield has a lot on his plate. Being the frontman for a legendary band comes with its own set of responsibilities, but in this new, revealing piece for Road Recovery, the musician talks about how he wishes he’d been better able to balance the needs of his fans and the needs of his family.

We’ve already reported on two clips from his interview series with Road Recovery, which is dedicated to helping young people battle addiction and more. In the newest video above, Hetfield opens up about his struggles to balance his fame with his family obligations and the constant work he puts in to be a good parent.

When asked about being a father, Hetfield starts off by talking about mistakes he thinks he made when he turned the big 5-0. “When I turned 50, there was a split in the road. I’m thinking, ‘I’m this rocker dude who’s got to go out blazing. I’m an artist, I’m a struggling artist. I need to struggle, I have to struggle,'” stated Hetfield. “‘Maybe I have to fall farther, maybe the elevator has to go further down. I need to do some more research. I need to show my fans that I really care about them more than anything else.’ I forgot about the other split – my family.”

The frontman continued by pointing out that he doesn’t think his own upbringing is an excuse for his mistakes. He said, “Just because my family kind of disintegrated as a kid doesn’t mean my parents didn’t have unconditional love for me. I know there are parents out there that struggle with loving their kids, or not knowing how to love their kids. Being a parent is so hard. I’ll either smother that kid with control or just go, ‘Whatever you do, I don’t want to know.’ Being in the middle is so hard. So hard, in the very middle. Showing that you care and being hated as a parent. And even when you’re doing a good job, you’re hated.”

In the previous two videos, Hetfield talked about how the validation and adoration he receives from fans feels like a drug to him and in the other, he mentions that people would not like him if they knew of the “horrible stuff” he’s done. To learn more about Road Recovery, and how you can help the organization click here.

This past week, Hetfield performed with his sixteen year old daughter Cali at the Acoustic-4-a-Cure benefit to raise money for the Pediatric Cancer Program at the UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital. The pair performed Adele‘s song “Crazy for You” and you can check out fan-filmed footage of their song here.

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