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Mark McGrath: My Kids Have Made Me Selfless

12/06/2010 at 04:00 PM ET
Ethan Miller/Getty

Mark McGrath didn’t know how his life would change when he became a father to twins Lydon Edward and Hartley Grace last April. Now seven months into parenthood, he’s fearless when it comes to baby fluids and in love with his fiancée all over again.

“I’ve been a little selfish in my life, I’m not going to lie,” McGrath, 42, told PEOPLE Friday in Las Vegas.

“I’ve had a lot of incredible things happen in my life. I didn’t have to do things that I didn’t want to do and people handed me things. Now, it’s all about my children. I’m a part of their world now. There’s no place for my selfishness or my little qualms. They’ve made me selfless.”

A “master diaper changer” to Hartley and Lydon, the Sugar Ray frontman said he’s a hands-on dad who doesn’t mind waking up in the middle of the night to tend to the babies. He’s also aware of his kids’, um, bodily fluids, but that no longer bothers him either. “I’ll get poop under my nails,” he admits. “There’s no mystery there.”

Parenthood was put on hold momentarily when he recently shot Celebrity Apprentice in New York City, forcing him to be away from his children. On Friday, he spent another night away, as he was in Las Vegas as part of the Zappos.com Rock and Roll Marathon, handing out Marathon Energy Bars to participants.

Acknowledging that time away from his children is strenuous, McGrath says hours apart from Carin Kingsland is easily as tough.

“The kids have made me really fall in love with my fiancée,” he said. “I’ve been with her on and off for 16 years. Relationships hit rough patches and it takes work to keep that love alive, but now I look at her and I’m like, ‘Wow, you are gangster — I love you.’ I’m so happy to be with her. When I see her now, it just refortifies that love.”

– Mark Gray

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Showing 15 comments

tink1217 on

i am so in love with this man!!!! I have liked him since Sugar Ray began but he just has come alive after becoming a dad!!!!

Nancy on

Nobody is totally selfless. Your priorities change but we all have selfishness at some points in our lives.

sfmom on

Okay…funny story.
First off – I like Mark McGrath…I like what he has to say about his kids and generally there’s nothing about him that’s made me think “what a douche” which is more than I can say for most celebs…although, I don’t pay much attention to him, so maybe I just missed it.

But…there’s something about his appearance that has me constantly feeling like “what’s wrong with this picture?”

Until the other night, when my husband happened to stumble on that show “Don’t forget the lyrics” and said: “Oh my gosh! It’s Fire Marshall Bill!”

He is so right.

Brooke on

Mark – we miss your blogs over here SO much….Please do a periodic update of the twins for us….

steph on

So how come this article says Mark was ‘forced’ to leave his babies and NO-ONE is ripping him to shreads for being a crap father?? If it were a woman there would be hysteria on the comments board…kinda sad so many women willingly attack other mothers but say zero about a dad’s choices…

jessicad on

The amount of respect and love he has for Carin really shines through his blogs, it’s so sweet and amazing!

Lilianne on

I agree steph. There was an article recently about Melissa Joan Hart and having to be away from her boys while she worked on her new series and there were TONS of comments bashing her for that. But this man does it and everything thinks its great. I don’t understand that. Fathers are JUST as important as mothers. :)

Shannon on

OK Mark so when’s the wedding? ;)

Amanda on

Yea, Mark is back!!! This made my day. Love your posts!!!

molly on

Some people rag on him, but he is very intelligent and quite funny-see him in interviews. I am guessing those kids are going to be very lucky little people! So happy for him and his new found “selflessness”!

Nancy's cup is half empty on

Very insightful.

Jill on

Thank you so much for having another post about Mark and his family!! I miss his posts so much! Can’t wait to see him on The Celebrity Apprentice. On a family note, I really hope he decides to write a book someday about his families journey.

I did not rag on Melissa Joan Hart or any working parent and will not rag on him. I never understand why people do. Parents need to work to provide for their children. My father worked two jobs. My grandfather worked long hours. My best friend is the one who works while her husband stays home. Every household is different.

Josie on

I’ve genuinely missed your weekly blog.

Trish on

McGrath is one of the most down to earth, genuine, decent people you would ever meet – even in the days he was partying it up like a young fool.

Fame never got to his head. He knows how to laugh at himself and doesn’t take fame too seriously. He puts on an incredible show. I love his voice – it is so fresh and pleasant but still sounds manly and ever so slightly raspy.

He isn’t the greatest artist (although he is underrated and is damn good), but ultmately he is a master entertainer and has made an art out of that. Whether he is hosting a show on tv or ‘MCing’ a concert (I’ll never forget the Sugar Ray, Matchbox Twenty, Maroon 5 show), he knows how to be relatable, authentic, funny and plain entertaining. Matchbox is my favourite band, but it was Mr. McGrath that stole the show that night.

Anyone who is scrutinizing his comments should really chill out. The guy is clearly ridiculously happy and proud of his family and in love right now. He would not be the first person on the planet to use exaggeration to emphasize how much he hates being away from his family. Furthermore, you people do know that there is a difference between what he says and what the article writes – did McGrath say he was “forced”? No.

There are really irritating celebrities that feel entitled – some poor guy innocently makes a few comments and people go nuts. On a day to day basis, we forgive people for the worst faux pas, but lets bash the guy that is happy and wouldn’t harm a fly.

McGrath to me is to the music industry what Bullock is to the film industry. He is intelligent, kind and talented but people miss that because he likes playing the ‘goof’ and doesn’t walk around with a pickle up his ass saying “I am an artist”.

gdfg on

Steph, I agree completely! I have found so much sexism on this board, it’s nauseating (including the title to this website–shouldn’t it be PARENTS&Babies, rather than Moms&Babies?). It seems like so many people on this board think that moms’ lives should completely revolve around their children, while men are praised for spending even a little time with their kids.

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