Envision this for a moment:
Your teenage daughter is dating a man nearly twice her own age. That man is infamous for his love of partying, his destructive addiction to booze, and his compulsion to chase every pretty young thing he sees.
Lionel Richie doesn’t have to imagine that nightmare scenario — because he’s living it. Sofia Richie and Scott Disick are dating.
And he’s speaking out about exactly how he feels about the relationship.
Remember those old Gossip Girl ads that used their negative reviews as a selling point?
They included lines like “every parent’s nightmare,” coupled with steamy photos from the show’s first episodes.
That was a great ad campaign.
But unlike the contents of that epic series, Lionel Richie is actually experiencing a parent’s nightmare.
We first reported that Sofia Richie and Scott Disick appeared to be dating a while back, but the couple only made it official very recently, with some cuddly photos on social media and some wildly unsubtle PDA out in public.
Sofia Richie is 19.
Scott Disick is 34.
Scott is also a notorious womanizer, and his friends are reportedly worried that his binge drinking and alcoholism might kill him.
If nothing else, Scott Disick’s liver disease is evidence enough that he has a problem.
But a diagnosis is rarely enough to truly prevent someone with self-sabotaging tendencies from spiraling into further self-destructive behavior.
Sofia Richie deserves an age-appropriate, stable romantic interest. We don’t think that Scott Disick fits the bill.
And, apparently, neither does her father.
Us Weekly caught up with the music legend at the New York City American Idol auditions, where Lionel Richie revealed his thoughts on Sofia Richie’s new relationship.
“Have I been in shock?! I’m the dad, come on.”
We’ll take that as a “yes.”
And don’t worry — he provided more context.
When Us asked Lionel if he was happy for them, he did not answer in the affirmative.
“I’m scared to death, are you kidding me?”
That’s … not mincing words.
One could look at this as problematic.
As yet another example of a father acting as if he owns his daughter or her sexuality. You know, like those gross “rules for dating my daughter” types who want their daughters to stay virgins forever but who applaud their sons for enjoying their lives and making their own sexual decisions.
If you’ll recall, Sofia was once romantically entangled with another notorious bad boy often associated with Kourtney Kardashian:
Bieber is only a few years older than Sofia. Though some of Bieber’s behavior is out there, even at his worst, the Biebs has never been able to really hold a candle to Scott Disick’s bad behavior over this past summer.
So while Lionel Richie wasn’t saying anything along the lines of “go on, Sofia, and get that Justin Bieber dick while the getting’s still good,” which is what some of us might have said, he refused to condemn the relationship when asked.
Mostly, he just seemed uncomfortable to be asked about his daughter’s love life and would clearly have preferred to just go home in peace with whatever kind of citrus beverage he had in his hand.
We think that it’s very telling that Lionel had no such restraint when asked about Sofia and Scott.
To his credit, Lionel Richie doesn’t seem to be trying to assert some sort of paternal ownership over Sofia to end this.
She’s an adult and can make her own choices.
(Even though Scott Disick’s appeal seems to have expired rather sharply over the past six months or so)
But, as someone who loves Sofia, of course Lionel is scared.
His daughter could get her heart broken when Scott moves on to the next hot young thang who crosses his path.
Or, worse, if Scott’s behavior catches up with him and he suffers a health crisis … Sofia doesn’t need to go through that.