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On July 7, Tampa Bay Buccaneers quarterback and former Patriots superstar Tom Brady spoke on Spotify's "Drive With Jim Farley" podcast about the unique trials of parenting when you're wealthy — and it's stirred up quite the discussion on social media.
The interview was covered by various news outlets, including Page Six, which published a story with the headline: "Tom Brady: My wealth is the 'hardest thing' about parenting." Social media erupted in controversy over Brady's comment about how his privileged lifestyle and accumulative wealth with wife Gisele Bündchen were the most difficult parts of raising kids. Twitter brought the snark with sarcastic sympathies like "thoughts and prayers" and offers to take the money off their hands.
Hey Tom good news! Because I am a kind, unselfish person I will take this problem off your hands. Check your DMs for my bank acct info. No thanks necessary just happy to help out a fellow struggling parent! https://t.co/kQvgsHhXc0— The Kids Are Not On Fire (@KidsArentOnFire) July 15, 2022
Please respect the Brady family in these trying times...https://t.co/XJxIUhRPkP— TPS (@TotalProSports) July 15, 2022
Others came to his defense, reminding people to read or listen to the full interview before jumping to conclusions. "Make sure to read the article," one Reddit user suggested. "At least he understands that his children are growing up very privileged and is trying to make sure they aren't assh*les."
The couple are raising three kids together: Vivian Lake, 9, Benjamin Rein, 12, and John "Jack" Edward, 14, Brady's son with his ex Bridget Moynahan. In the podcast interview, Brady told host Farley that he just wants them to know they're experiencing a different childhood from most other kids.
"We have people that clean for us. We have people that make our food. We have people that drive us to the airport if we need that . . . we get off a plane and there's people waiting there for us and we get ushered in," he said in the podcast. The wealth isn't the problem; it's that the NFL athlete struggles with keeping his children grounded in reality despite this immense privilege.
This is in contrast to the childhoods he and Bündchen experienced. While he grew up in a middle-class family in California, his wife grew up in rural Brazil. "There are two bedrooms in their house — one for their parents and one for her and her five sisters," he said.
Since then, Brady has become familiar with a hefty paycheck. He's played in the NFL for 23 years, making near $300 million, according to Sporting News. Meanwhile, Bündchen was named the highest-paid model in the world for the 14th year in a row in 2016 by Forbes, and her current net worth is around $400 million.
Brady and Bündchen plan to keep talking about privilege with their kids as they grow up. "I think we can try to create experiences that are more along the lines of what most kids go through, even though they will still have experiences that a lot of kids never do have."