I remember reading a few articles that described how some of the highest profile athletes and entertainers get so fucked up. They talked about getting 'sucked into the bubble' around people like Michael Jackson, Elvis Presley and other highly successful celebrities.
Didn't anyone ever look Elvis straight in the face and say,
You're fat and you do too many drugs. Cut that shit out or you're going to die.
or grab Michael Jackson by both arms, shake him and say,
Hey! Don't hang out with little kids! It's creepy weird. Find a woman. A man. An adult monkey. Seriously, what the fuck is it with the kids? Quit doing all those drugs, too!
My guess is the answer is, "No."
Here is what I see. The more famous, wealthy or successful you get, the more people are afraid of you. Most people are not fabulously famous, etc. so you end up with a lot of people around you whose major quality to offer to the world is that they are associated with YOU.
No matter how wonderful anyone is, they will do stupid shit from time to time.
The difference if you are rich and famous is that people don't call you on your shit.
Sometimes, people will say to me privately that they disagree with some decision Ronda has made. They might go on at length and in great detail. When I suggest that they tell Ronda that to her face, they make a lot of excuses. One person even suggested that I go with him when he talked to her. I refused, even though I agreed with his opinions. He's a grown man but he's afraid that if he disagrees with her then she won't let him hang around any more and he won't get to be a big shot.
Frankly, the whole thing makes me sick.
What happens when everyone around you is saying, "Oh, you're right. You're so great. You're the champion."
Well, then the one person who says,
"You know, maybe you should have acted a little differently in that situation."
... is the bad guy. After all, everyone else thinks it's fine that I got drunk and shot the TV.
(Chill. It was an example. That was Elvis. Ronda has not assaulted any household appliances under the influence of alcohol.)
Anyone who gets to know Ronda comments on what a genuinely good person she is, and I think a lot of that has to do with having a large family around her.
Last night, because Maria, Dennis, Eric and I were out of town, she was babysitting her nieces until past 11 pm and less than 3 hours later was on the set for Good Morning, America.
I think that is very healthy. You are part of the family and that means you pitch in. When I left for Utah, and Julia was flying home to an empty house, she stayed at Jennifer's house, because we're a family.
No one gave Ronda a pass on picking up the girls from school and preschool because hey, you're their aunt and the only one in town tonight.
Even though she always tells me not to worry, I still do - a lot.
It's impossible to read the news for a week and not see the report of some athlete or entertainer getting in some situation that shows incredibly poor judgement and not ask yourself, "How the hell could they make such a stupid mistake?"
I'll bet you that the answer is that they were living in a bubble, where no one dared to tell them that anything they ever did was wrong, and so they started to believe it. After all, who wouldn't like to believe that every decision they made was right? That bubble of what you see as acceptable - because everyone around you accepts it - just gets bigger and bigger until one day it pops when you rape someone in a hotel room or shoot someone because they annoyed you or overdose on drugs.
That's why I think it's good for her that ever since Ronda made her first world team she has had people around her to pop that bubble. As Jennifer said when Ronda walked in the door after competing in her first Olympics at age 17,
I don't care where you've been or what you've won. It is SO your turn to change the cat litter.
Totally unrelated to this --
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If you buy one here or donate it to a school then I won't be so broke that I have no time to continue writing this blog.
If you don't have ten bucks, that's okay.
You can download a free demo and play it here.
We won't judge you. Have fun.
This is true on so many levels even for normal every day life. Walk in to a grocery store. How do parents get there children to behave? Buy them the toy or give them the candy? What's that child learning? To get what he or she wants simply act foolish. Walk in to a Walmart. How many times do you wonder who the parent is and who the child is? Too often parents are befriending instead of raising their children, so afraid to alienate that child or be the bad guy. If more people would stand up and say this may be a bad decision, plan of action, or idea we may be in a better place as a society. Fame, however adds a whole other dimension to this beast. Everyone pulling at the coats tails or wanting a piece of the pie. Not stopping to think that what they are doing or saying may be fueling a fire that is already sparked out of control. I work in a prison where I see people who didn't get their bubbles popped. Did what they want, how they want, to whomever they want. I applaud your family for being straightforward and being strong. At the end of it all, when the fame is gone, douche bags will leave and all you're left with is family and the legacy you created. Might as well make it a good one.
Seems like you are describing exactly the situation Schaub was in with her....and then they weren't a couple anymore. What is wrong with this picture. Too many control freaks on your family, that is for sure
i've been a fan of your daughter since about june 2011 and from a fan perspective watching her attain more fame is like sitting on a beach and watching a boat drift further and further away. i used to chat with her on twitter a couple times a week for a long while now she seems like shes on another planet.i know i'm just a fan and social media does not equal an actual real life friendship but watching someone you were a fan of blow up into something of a cultural phenom has been both exciting and weirdly sad. i'm proud of all shes accomplished but hearing some of the rumors about her professional and personal life especially as of late has been a bit disheartening.she has you in her corner so i don't fear her going completely insane.by the way sorry if this came off fanboyishly creepy.
What a dull place the world would be if everyone was the same...or worse...if everyone was exactly like you. Live and let live. Teach your children to dare to be different. If I hear Ronda say one more time "my mom used to say this"...Does she ever have an original thought?
Trust me, Ronda has PLENTY of original thoughts. Sorry if you have a bad relationship with your mother. That must suck for you.
As I have said elsewhere, it has been my experience that those people who tell parents they are too involved with their children are generally looking for an opening to exploit those children http://www.thejuliagroup.com/blog/?p=4688
A dandy entry. I have absolutely never understood the whole entourage (not the TV show) thing. Who could stand having people hanging around eating your food, and using your stuff, in a one-sided relationship? People that would want to do that would creep me right out.
"Other things may change us, but we start and end with the family"-Anthony Brandt
I'm completely baffled by the need to cast judgement on people or their decisions. I'm even more confused by the need to be insulting on a family membersb page. If you aren't a fan or disagree with the choices being made then why follow them on social media? Nothing better to do? Live and let live. Dr. Annmarie you have far more patience than I can imagine.
Hey..I have an idea...lets pair up the best female combat sports athlete in history with someone that split a decision with a #21 fighter and has never beaten, or even fought, anyone in the top 10. Yeah...that sounds like something we can sell to Ronda's new retarded fight fans. The UFC is becoming a complete insult to my intelligence.
It appears that you need to sell way more if those math games...they are desperately needed
Dr. De Mars,
I could not agree more. We kids with strong mamas might not like what Mama has to say- and it might take a while for what she says to sink in - but when we can step back and look at it objectively, we often realize, more often than not, Mama was right. It is unfortunate some folks of fortune or fame either do not have a trusted person(s) to give it to them straight or fail to heed sage advice. But we are all human and faliable, no amount of fortune nor fame can alter that fact (as much as some "famous" folks and the folks who worship them think otherwise). Thank you for your frankness - in this "I'm a victim" world, it is refreshing.
Also, to the persons who feel it necessary to take the time to "comment" and talk smack (here and eveywhere) from the safety of their computer/mobile device/computer chip in their head, at least have the nads to attach your name to your post.
I have been fan of Ronda and u Dr Ann,for quiet a while.You are right when some people make it big they go down a very long and dark road,that they may never come out from.I think Ronda has done a very nice job at staying level headed. Dr Ann have you every thought about running for the White House. Because we need someone in there with plain old common sense
Another explanation for why people do stupid things like shoot a TV and Ronda doesn't is that they're idiots and she isn't an idiot. At least as far as I can tell she isn't an idiot. True when someone is famous (s)he often finds himself/herself surrounded by 'Yes men'. However, making excuses for a person's behavior by saying it's due to being surrounded by 'Yes men' is just that an excuse. It doesn't matter how many 'yes men', supporters, fans, friends, family, and/or frenemies a person surrounds himself/herself with, at the end of the day the actions of that person are their responsibility not the responsibility of everyone or anyone around them.
If Ronda ever loses control of her faculties and decides to snort some coke, get hammered, and then get behind the wheel of a car and crash into another person causing that other person injury then that is 100% Ronda's fault. It doesn't matter that the dude she was hanging out with didn't tell her that snorting coke, taking 30 shots of tequila, and then driving may not be the best idea.
For the record I'll disclaim that the above is an extreme example and I don't think Ronda would ever actually do that. At least I hope she wouldn't do something like that since I don't know her so don't have any insight into what she does in her personal life.
Also, people complaining about Ronda quoting Ann Maria need to suck it up. There are more important things in the world to complain about than an elite martial artist sometimes quoting her mother who's a world champion judoka in her own right. If you want to complain about something I suggest complaining about the gun range in Florida that's now allowed to serve alcohol.
Hello, mrs DeMars,
I was just checking what i missed in the last couple of months so its nice to see everything is as crispy, sharp and crystal clear as before. :D
About this article subject though, i need to say that keeping good people who keep the things straight (without overdoing it preferably), is also a task for her Highness too.
Of course she doesnt get a chance to demonstrate that when people wuss out like that guy. Hope it wasnt Bob. Hope Bob slips and falls down the st.. ahem,cough... look, is that Cyborg over there!? Oh no, sorry, its just Boston Dynamics doing some testing run.
I mean, i would never even think she would prefer to spend time with people who are only "nice" and "great" to her and dish out those who would disagree about something.
But, for one thing, those things are not so clear cut and visible to someone while they are happening to them. Its only those who look from a side angle that see it. For another... ive been wrong before.
It wasnt just people around Elvis or Micheal Jackson that were guilty of letting them slide down. It was also the guilt of those two examples themselves for going down the easier path. It was them who pushed all the straight people away and just let themselves go down the drain of trying to constantly feel super great. Trying not to think. Because thats too difficult. And heavy.
Maintaining healthy circle of people around oneself takes effort and discipline and even training, just like any other worthwhile thing thats constantly evolving, impossible to make static, and hard to keep.
Balance, again. Between lickspittles and psychos and tyrants.
Hard to master. But very possible really, if one starts to push away all those who are unbalanced, extremes. Party time feelgood junkies, psychos and trolls.
And keep the balanced ones around more.
... I would so love to burst your daughter bubbles, mam.
I mean, i would burst her bubbles all day. For free. They would just go: pop, pop, puff! And the best thing is she would never catch me. (i can also avoid up to dozen angry Armenians for two days straight, possibly three depending on conditions such as humidity, cloud cover and phases of the moon)
I can already see the whole house raising up in the air over Venice from all those hot air balloons. But,... im five thousand kilometers away.
You, the family and rest of the US are all on your own.
Why do mothers forget everything they learned, when it comes to parenting their daughters? FYI - it has nothing to do with her being the champion, or successful. The way men treat her is entirely due to her attractiveness and personality. How often are the most successful women judged on their accomplishments and failures?
On the other hand, if she is treated with true respect or deference, that's because of her confidence and self-reliance. Who she is, not what she'd done.
Further - young women are naturally attracted to bad boys - trouble makers, renegades, losers, alpha males. Every pretty girl is going to get sucked into a whirlpool of bad decisions with bad men, unless she has been raised right and has support. For every Britney Spears and Linsey Lohan, there are thousands of poor unknown girls who made the exact same mistakes with love, alcohol and drugs.
This subject of what sort of people one chooses to hang around with reminds me of a comment by Theodore Dalrymple quoted recently on the "Ace of Spades HQ" site. He noted that while working in prisons he would frequently encounter inmates who explained how they had erred through having fallen "in with the wrong crowd." He realized that even the prisoners knew that what they were telling him was rubbish -- because they would always laugh when he remarked how strange it was that, while he was always meeting people who had "fallen in with the wrong crowd," he had never met an actual member of the wrong crowd!
Of course, hangers-on with a direct financial stake in the person they're sucking up to are the least likely to rock the boat. That's why the claim that the "Dr. Feelgood" whose drugs killed Michael Jackson was guilty of a deliberate homicide always seemed so shaky; it was in his interest to keep his meal ticket above ground as long as possible, even while giving in to his every twisted request.
Apparently too many rich/famous people like "The King" or Michael Jackson are unappreciative of advice, just like the movie bad guy or warlord who doesn't want to be told by his subordinates that his actions might be just a teensy bit extreme. (One fictional exception that comes to mind is the lord from the old Viking movie who angrily proposes to put Tony Curtis to death and then expresses gratitude to the guy who talked him out of it, solemnly proclaiming his advisor "the guardian of my fury" -- before simply maiming Tony horribly instead.)
whatever situation, whether it be of a business,lovelife or training nature that you are weary about when it comes to your daughter, with you and your other daughters in her corner i'm sure she'll come out the other side wiser.
AnnMaria- famous people's close in sycophants may worship the ground they walk on, but the general public are much more fickle and make decisions/judgements that are not based on direct personal gain, per se. I sincerely hope the recent rumors going around are just rumors. Ronda has much credibility, and indeed her future at stake, especially after the Mayweather stance (all sensible people agreed with her 100% on). Prayers to you and Ronda.
Dr. De Mars,
I appreciate You and love reading your posts. In case of "Popping the Ronda bubble" I can say She is OK and will be OK, with your strong support. All of us behaved as dumbasses at some point. It's hard to keep balance in environment in which you are constantly present in the media (ocasionally changing diapers is pretty good method)."Money and success don't change people. They merely amplify what is already there." :)
whatever is troubling you about her if its shady business,hanger ons in the gym or circle of friends,or another shitty future ex boyfriend.i'm sure she will be fine she comes from good stock.
My original comment disappeared - I will try to recreate it. Why am I mentioning this? In case the original reappears, I want to be clear that I didn't love it so much that I had to post it twice. ; )
Full disclosure - I am a huge RR fan. That being said, I am rational and understand that she will do and say stupid things. We all do. We *don't* all endure the type of scrutiny Ronda does, under which she has held up well, I think. We as fans always want to know our heroes, but we can't. We can only evaluate them through the public eye and then form our own opinions.
Dr. DeMars, I appreciate this well-meaning message and think it applies to people in all walks of life, though it is particularly relevant to those with "hangers-on." Judging form what I have seen and read about your relationship with your daughter, as long as Ronda has you in her corner (so to speak), she will be just fine. Plus, she comes across as pretty smart, so eventually she will probably lose the "douche bags."
I wish you and your daughter continued success and happiness.
Your family is a bubble of love , make sure no one pops this one!
Great read, mom! Bless you all for helping keep her on the right path. =)
I think Ronda's mistakes hurt you a lot because you worry about your baby. She has to learn that every choice she makes affects others. You should tell her to think about the 7 Generations Principle ;-)
is it even possible for me to respect mrs DeMars anymore than i have.
I think you are a great parent.Your advice and views are sound and right on. What is amazing is Ronda seems to heed your advice and value your opinions. There seems to be a period in life when it is very hard to get your children to listen to their parent(s), then as they get a little older they realize that your advice and/or views were pretty much right and you just really care about them and what they do with their lives. I think Ronda is over the hump in that respect. Kudos to you and your family.
Great column. Very insightful!
I worry about her a lot too.
Hmm, this is a tough nut to crack, for sure. Even the Beatles were torn apart by this very thing, being accustomed to everyone stumbling over themselves to please them, it was only their peers within the group who had no fear about telling them what's what. I wish I knew her more to be able to say something of value, I suppose this is one of those growing experiences, though one unlike many other people have experienced. I do think it's really neat to see the relationship you all have, I can tell she loves you very much and if she falls and bruises her behind, she'll be coming back around to you sooner or later. :) Thank you for sharing so openly.
A true friend will always, eventually set you straight and bring you down to earth when you start getting to full of yourself. Even if you ARE all that.
Times up in saying "awesome sauce" too.
I'v never spent any time with Ronda so suffice to say, I may be completely off with my observations and personal "hearsay." My opinion is just that, my opinion - which Ronda will never care to read or if she did, sweep my under the rug as a "hater" -- which I'm not.
In close corners not everyone says nice things about Ronda. Yes, a "famous" person will get unwarranted shots fired in their direction but sometimes there is an element of truth mixed in with the smoke.
She's not always a kind person to those she feels "above" of. We all have bad days but it's easy to smile while she's signing a book, doing a charity event or some other money making venture. The true test is when no one is looking and you're as nice to the front desk clerk as you are to Dana White(who is milking Ronda for every dime he can get..and she's using Zuffa as well.)
It's no secret in the small MMA world that Ronda has a chip on her shoulder and is unkind to those she feels are beneath her.. Even her "friends" talk about her "prima donna" ..
I know stories but I wont get into details with her relationships with men or even with "friends".. It was interesting to hear Schaub say that Ronda has a lot of "yes men(people) around her and he even went into a short snippet into how she reacted to some advice he was giving her.. Even going as far to say Schaub was trying to capitalize on her fame. I'm not talking about his recent comments regarding domestic violence.
I hope I am wrong as an outsider looking in.. and have an ear on things from time to time but.. She's a train wreck waiting to happen. She's in a good fight camp but Edmond is not going to 'bite the hand that feeds you".. or "look a 'gift horse' in the mouth".. If he was that person, certain things wouldn't be happening.
I hope I'm wrong and never read a book ten years from now with Ronda's rise and fall from fame and how she's picked up the pieces to move on.
I'm no one to comment on someone else's mistakes as I'v made plenty on my own. It must be tough to live in a privileged setting while maintaining a humble spirit.
A Celebrities Anecdote, "Mom" ....
Once upon a time Einstein and Chaplin meets into a Limousine to one of those Media Awards Events ...
When those get out of Limo ... The rain of flashes from the paparazzi and the hysterical screams from the audience made consternation on Einstein who disturbing said: "What is happening to them?? " ... with total indifference Chaplin said to Einstein: "Nothing" while given the gesture to walk the first steps into the Red carpet walk ...
Can Ronda accomplish Chaplin Temperance to the side effects of The Art ???
There is always something to learn , inclusive for Einstein ...
Well, anonymous, I don't know what stories you have heard, but Ronda is a genuinely kind person who does not think of people as "beneath her" and I'm pretty sure I know her better than you. Everyone has bad days and I'm sure she has had one or two, as no doubt have you. Unrelated to MMA or judo, I wrote about this on my other blog, "Why CEOs are rude and investors are jerks" http://www.thejuliagroup.com/blog/?p=4764 The fact is, they aren't, really. They just are overworked and overwhelmed many days
AnnMaria- just spent over two hours last night listening to Ronda and Edmund's Joe Rogan interview. It was THE best interview I have ever seen Ronda in. Tears all the way to laughing out loud! Plus- it reassures us that she has come full circle WRT your advise you attempted to give to a teenage Ronda. Like Mark Twain once related, "When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years."
Well, there is at least one very lucky marine and three of his buddies who disagree with Ms./Mr. Anonymous! Very gracious thing of Ronda to do. She will definitely be the "belle of the ball"!
it's weird i've never met or spoke to your daughter yet i worry like you do.all the stuff i've been hearing lateley about married men and domestic violence and her name being attached to it is giving me a goddamned ulcer.i hope she finds her way out of this mess okay.
Well Cuivre - I'm glad you liked it, I guess. I listened to it for 2 minutes and wanted to puke so I turned it off
i wouldn't worry to much about her spinning off the rails she has good sense except in the picking boyfriends department god i hope those rumors aren't true .other then that she'll be fine.
Ive watched the same Rogan talk Cuivre liked a few days ago and i have to say Ronda seemed like one of the least bubbled up people ive ever seen. I dont think there is any real danger of any strange, dangerous bubbles forming there. At least for the time being.
If anything she looked and talked like some younger 20yr old girl that is down to earth and just ordinary, smart, funny next door girl that looks quite gorgeous without the media glamour, makeup and styling too.
(i dont care who has what kind of beauty preferences. when i look at that interview i see her and listen to her speak I go "aahhh, mmmm!" and smile all day after. She is properly and truly gorgeous.)
This especially shines out when you compare her to some of her colleagues. One of which lately presents a real overblown case of wrong bubbles in the head that need some serious popping. That guy is completely incapable of creating any kind of positive hype, let alone any kind of real positive influence on anyone or anything, like Ronda does all the time. And everyone right in their minds can see she is a natural, true source of it.
The interview isnt that bad at all, very relaxed, informal, funny and full of all kinds of small interesting facts and memories and retelling of moments and just fun.
Joe could have came up with better questions thats true but, Ronda and Edmond can provide great talks on their own anyway.
Im very happy to see it because lately ive only seen her in official events and media styling allgear setup, so its great to see the ordinary girl Ronda too a little bit. And one of the most endearing, great things about it is how she seemingly stayed untwisted by the fame and hype, which especially shines out in how she and Edmond talk to each other or about other things.
Its also something that becomes very visible when she is around you mrs DeMars, or the rest of the family.
She already complimented Edmond and the others in the gym several times as her reality check group, the ones who dont have any problem in telling her something sucked or wasnt ok. And she likes that.
With addition of the family and a few good friends...
Still... better to squash any single small balloons that come up before they start bubbling up and multiplying. Strike while the bubble is hot and all. :)
btw, mrs DeMars, Joe seems to think the world of you and has said he would like to have you on the show too. That would be great to see.
Please do it.
I would bet that interview would be one of the least pukey ones Joe ever did.
Have a great day.
I see now that i was wrong in assuming who made the things pukey in that Jow rogan talk.
I thought it was Joe because i as much as anyone had no idea that relations were so bad with the coach.
Obviously there was and is a lot of stuff that was swept under the rug there.
Good job on airing the room.
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