Shaquille O'Neal's Reason for Not Leaving Fortune for His Kids is Admirable Parenting

Shaquille O'Neal may be one of the wealthiest former athletes in the world, with an estimated net worth of $400 million, but that doesn't mean that he will give his children money without them earning it. O'Neal, who shares six children with his ex-wife Shaunie, says his kids need to understand and appreciate the value of a dollar. He notes that he lets it be known they are not to look for him for full financial support.  

"My kids are older now. They kinda upset with me - not really upset - but they don't understand," he said during an appearance on Earn Your Leisure podcast. "Because I tell them all the time. We ain't rich. I'm rich."

He says his children getting an education is non-negotiable. "You've got to have Bachelor's or Master's [degrees,] and then if you want me to invest in one of your companies, you're going to have to present it... bring it to me, I'll let you know. I'm not giving you nothing," he said. "There's one rule: education. I don't care if you play basketball. I don't care about none of that."

Furthermore, O'Neal says he has big dreams of what his children's futures will look like. "Listen, I got six kids. I would like a doctor, somebody to own a hedge fund, a pharmacist, a lawyer, someone that owns multiple businesses, someone to take over my business. But I tell them I'm not going to hand it to you. You gotta earn it."

In a previous interview with the New York Post, O'Neal spoke about the importance of not wasting his fortune as others have. He also doesn't want to be in the spotlight as much. "These celebrities are going freaking crazy and I don't want to be one. I denounce my celebrity-ness today. I'm done with it," he said. "I don't want to be in that category. Celebrities are crazy, they really are. Don't call me that anymore. These people are out of their freaking mind with how they treat people, what they do, what they say. That's never been me. I never want to be looked at like that."


He says celebrities get a bad rep and are often stereotyped. "All my life, everyone probably gets stereotyped, but us celebrities, we get stereotyped because most of these celebrities are out of their mind. I don't do that. I'm a regular person that listened, followed his dreams and made it," he said. "I came from nothing. But, just because I made it doesn't mean I'm bigger than you, smarter than you - just because I have more money doesn't mean I'm better than you. I've never been that way and I never will be that way. So I don't want to be in that category of people."