Kanye West has been called many things, but these days the best description — according to him — is family man.
The 36-year-old rapper appeared on Kris Jenner’s daytime talk show “Kris” on Friday to discuss his relationship with Jenner’s daughter, Kim Kardashian, and their new addition, North.
But if Kanye was smart, he’d hire Jenner as part of his PR team. The reality TV momager, who has extended her family’s brand from E! to Fox with this test run of her talk show, reiterated several times that the stone-faced and difficult Kanye portrayed in the media is not the man she’s come to know. (Kanye, after all, is now living in her home.)
“I’m so excited that I’ve gotten to know you like I have,” Jenner said. “There are a lot of things that people don’t know about you that are so interesting to me that I want other people to hear.”
Kanye spoke about the effect of the birth on his outlook.
“To me it’s such a blessing, and I feel like it’s going to give me the stability that I need to really create and really do God’s work in the way I should,” Kanye, wearing a “what would Jesus do” bracelet, told Jenner.
“Someone to be accountable, someone to be responsible for. After I lost my mother there were times I felt like I would put my life at risk, I felt like sometimes I didn’t have something to live for. Now I have two really special people to live for, a whole family to live for. I want people, when they remember me and my family, their thought association to be someone who helped, someone who brought joy.”
He did bring plenty of joy to Jenner’s show, as she beamed while displaying North’s photo for the audience. North, who was born June 15, has her mother’s eyes and father’s cheeks, according to Jenner.
“The thing I think about as a dad is just protection. That’s my only goal, to Kanye said his goal is “to protect my daughter. That’s my instinct.”
“To give my daughter as many opportunities to just be a child. Of course, a big thing that plagues us is this idea of the paparazzi chasing a 5-year-old around and screaming at them. … You have enough things to deal with and to learn being a new parent and you add that on top of it, and it becomes really intense.”
According to Jenner, Kanye’s been into his girlfriend for a long, long time, and would even use Photoshop to draw himself into the yearly Kardashian-Jenner Christmas card. (Seriously — Jenner showed proof.)
Although he couldn’t quite remember the first time he met Kardashian, 32, Kanye did know it was love at first sight.
“I’m trying to remember if the first time we met was her being in the studio when she was Brandy’s assistant, and I think she brought us in, like, something to drink,” he said. “Or it might’ve been when I was doing Brandy’s video and I remember asking my manager, ‘Who is that girl right there?’ … I was in love with her before I even got to talk to her.”
Kim, he said, was always someone he dreamed about being with, but more importantly, he feels that they’re “equally yoked.”
“Being in the limelight, you have to have a match, or someone that’s equally yoked,” he told Jenner. “It’s difficult, because there’s people that you would date who would try to date you to maybe be more famous, or people who would want you to be less famous than you were, and just not accept who you are in life. And when I would be on the phone with her, even at my lowest moments, she’d give me energy and remind me of who I was. And I needed that support at all times.”
Kanye knows that there are those who think he and the Kardashian family wouldn’t have much in common. But he’s trying to grow both spiritually — “I’m a Christian,” he said, “That’s what’s important to me, that I grow and walk and raise my family with Christian values.”
“People feel that me and my girlfriend’s mother are of different brands in a way,” he said. “But it’s not about any of us being at odds, it’s about us helping each other and improving each other. I might be one of the only guys in the world that knows how to pick out a pair of shoes for a girl, but I have improvements that I need to make as a human being … the way that I talk to people, being too sharp with people, or being too edgy. As a creative guy, sometimes it’s hard for me to small talk. … And that’s something that (the Kardashian) family and Kim are teaching me, helping me to be a better person.”
Given the negative press he’s had — from that infamous mic-jacking at the 2009 MTV Video Music Awards to more recent run-ins with the paparazzi — does he have any regrets? Not exactly.
While there are things he wishes he could change, he also believes that “everything happened for a reason, and I’ve grown from it,” he said. “I feel that I’m very, very, very blessed, and with that comes great responsibility. With the way my parents raised me and the information that they gave me and this feeling that I have that I want to help, I think anything that could be considered a mistake will help me to make better decisions in the future.”
Breeanna Hare | CNN