Pete Davidson Gets Real About His Father’s Death on 9/11; Says He’s Done With His Goofy Guy Image

Pete Davidson has long been viewed as the goofy adult in Hollywood that no one takes seriously, but that’s not the persona he wants to be known for – at least not anymore. In a recent interview with Jon Bernthal on his REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal, Davidson talks about his recent public image shift. 

While the 29-year-old comedian used to be fine with being viewed as ‘a big idiot with a d**k that smokes weed,’ he’s now admitting that the persona became humiliating. And now he’s trying to distance himself from that persona and wants to be taken more seriously as an actor, not just a standup comedian.

Pete Davidson Gets Real About His Father’s Death on 9/11; Says He’s Done With His Goofy Guy Image
via Shutterstock (Ga Fullner)

“That was my thing for a bit, but it doesn’t have to be my thing forever,” he tells Bernthal. Surprisingly, he credits a lot of that persona to the few 9/11 jokes he made about his father – for those who don’t know, Davidson’s father, Scott, was a firefighter who died while saving others after the 9/11 terrorist attack. 

RELATED: Pete Davidson Enters Trauma Therapy After Kanye West’s Online Harassment

Pete Davidson was only 7 years old when his father died and, while it was a traumatizing experience then and now, he often made light of it with several jokes through the years. As a result, many people started to associate him with 9/11 jokes – something he doesn’t feel is justified because he only did it a few times.

“I’m trying to share little jokes here and there about him because I like to keep that memory alive. My dad was a great dude, like, why is that a f*cking problem? I get defensive. It’s my family,” he says before going into detail about how he found out about his father’s life and how he suffered mentally as a result. 

According to Davidson, his father was supposed to pick him up from school on 9/11, but never showed – instead, it was his mother who picked him up. At the time, his mother didn’t explain why and it wasn’t until he turned on the TV one night and saw photos of the firefighters who died, including a photo of his father. 

Pete Davidson Gets Real About His Father’s Death on 9/11; Says He’s Done With His Goofy Guy Image
via Shutterstock (DFree)

While he says it was a weird way to find out, he now commends his mother – who was 30 years old at the time – for trying to protect him from the truth. He admitted that no one, including him and his mother, knew how to handle the tragedy and it took some time for it to sink in – a feeling many people can relate to. 

Pete Davidson is Happy After Years of Mental Health Struggles

Pete Davidson went on to explain how his childhood experience resulted in abandonment and trust issues. He struggled with believing others for a long time and added that Hollywood wasn’t the best place to try and learn that skill. Instead, he just became comfortable with the pain and got used to the trauma. 

Pete Davidson Gets Real About His Father’s Death on 9/11; Says He’s Done With His Goofy Guy Image
via Shutterstock (DFree)

“I’ve been self-harming since I was a kid … And up until a year ago, I used to cut and I used to bang my head against walls, because if I couldn’t deal with something, I would bang my head against the wall hoping I’d pass out because I didn’t want to be in that situation,” he said of his struggle with mental health.

As time went on, he became less and less abusive towards himself, but it only added to the confusion he felt mentally. While he admits he’s much happier today and is surrounded by people that love him, it took time to get comfortable with being comfortable – adding he had been living in discomfort for so long. 

YOU MAY ALSO LIKE: SNL Endures Big Changes, Here Are the Faces You Won’t See Anymore

“It’s a weird thing for me to even grasp now, because I’ve lived in discomfort for so long, where that became comfortable. So, now I actually have people around me that love me and it’s weird. It’s a whole new thing I never thought of. It’s weird being happy,” he says of his new persona and overall mindset.

About Mamas Uncut

Mamas Uncut is THE online place for moms. We cover the latest about motherhood, parenting, and entertainment as well – all with a mom-focused twist. So if you're looking for parenting advice from real parents, we have plenty of it, all for moms from moms, and also experts. Because, at the end of the day, our mission is focused solely on empowering moms and moms-to-be with the knowledge and answers they’re looking for in one safe space.

Scroll to Top