The Tragic Story Of Rihanna's Relationship With Her Father

Rihanna certainly looks like she's on top of the world. The star is now the richest female musician in the world, according to Forbes, beating the likes of Beyoncé and Madonna. In addition to being a chart-topping singer, much of her success has been due to her groundbreaking brand, Fenty Beauty, which launched in September 2017 to unbelievable success. According to Forbes, "Fenty Beauty racked up a reported $100 million in sales in its first few weeks."

Since then, Rihanna's brand has done nothing but grow, and the success has also had a long-lasting impact on the beauty industry. As Forbes notes, "Not only did [Fenty Beauty] achieve meaningful sales, but it potentially changed the industry permanently." Rihanna's inclusivity of women of all sizes and skin tones has proven that when all people feel celebrated, the brand succeeds.

While her life seems blissful now, Rihanna has survived a lot of hardship over the years. The singer has gone through tragedy, lived through some high-profile breakups, and also endured some celebrity feuds. Throughout all of this, Rihanna has had a difficult relationship with her father. This strained relationship had an impact on her upsetting relationship with Chris Brown, and it even resulted in a lawsuit at one point. Keep reading to discover the true story of Rihanna's relationship with her father.

Rihanna has helped her father through addiction

In a shockingly candid interview with the Mirror in 2007, Rihanna opened up about her family history. Rihanna has two younger brothers, Rorrey and Rajad, and together, they watched their father, Ronald Fenty, struggle with addiction.

Rihanna said, "Even as a toddler, I learned that my mum and dad would argue when there was foil paper in the ashtray." Rihanna's mother Monica eventually divorced Ronald, and Rihanna looked after her two younger brothers so that her mother could work to support them, per the Mirror.

Rihanna, who grew up in Barbados, said of her childhood: "But I think every child growing up goes through some sort of upheaval and perhaps mine was a bit worse. At the end of the day, I don't think about it anymore and it doesn't make me angry."

However, Ronald continued to struggle to stay sober. In 2013, Rihanna put Ronald through a "$58,000 Malibu rehab program," according to the Daily Mail. While this was generous, it ultimately didn't work. In December 2014, at Rihanna's inaugural Diamond Ball in Beverly Hills, Ronald reportedly had to be kicked out for drunken behavior before she even arrived, per the Daily Mail.

Ronald Fenty had a soft spot for Chris Brown

Rihanna's father, Ronald Fenty (pictured above with his ex-wife and Rihanna's mother, Monica Braithwaite), continued to shock fans when he spoke about Chris Brown affectionately after Brown assaulted his daughter on February 8, 2009. In a 2014 interview with the Daily Mail, Ronald said of Chris Brown: "When I see in the papers he's in trouble, I think 'Chris what the hell are you doing man?' The guy has got so much talent you know what I mean, to just screw up like that."

According to the outlet, Ronald had "long forgiven" Chris and admitted to still having "a big soft spot for him."

Rihanna spoke about Chris Brown's assault in an interview with ABC in 2009. At one point in the interview, she brought up her father (via NBC Connect). Rihanna said that her father used to beat her mother and Rihanna often got involved in attempts to "break up a fight."

Rihanna said, "Domestic violence is not somebody that people want anybody to know, so she would just hide it in the house. I always said to myself, 'I'm never going to date somebody like my dad, never.'"

But this wasn't the end of Ronald's impact on Rihanna's life.

Rihanna is suing her father

After Chris Brown assaulted Rihanna, Ronald Fenty shocked his daughter by selling news of the incident to the press.

In the April 2011 print edition of Vogue, Rihanna spoke about her feelings of betrayal surrounding her father's actions, saying: "But my dad went to the press and just told them a bunch of lies. Because he hadn't talked to me after ... that whole thing. He never called to find out how I was doing, if I was alive, nothing. He just never called. He went straight to the press and got a check" (via the Independent).

In 2019, news broke that Rihanna was suing her father. According to TMZ, Ronald created a company called Fenty Entertainment in 2017, but Rihanna had already "trademarked 'Fenty.'" Ronald and a business partner had allegedly "falsely advertised themselves as [Rihanna's] reps to solicit millions of dollars, including trying to book her for 15 shows in Latin America in December 2017 for $15 mil ... all without her authorization," per TMZ. According to The Blast, the case is still ongoing

Despite their problems, Rihanna is still there for her dad when he needs her. She even swooped in to save the day when he contracted coronavirus.

Family conflicts are never easy, and Rihanna isn't the only star to have a difficult relationship with her father. Hopefully, these two Fentys find some sort of resolution soon.