Rosie O'Donnell's Ex Criticizes Her Parenting Style Amid Custody Battle
Michelle Rounds claims O'Donnell's message to her kids is basically, "Do whatever you want"
Rosie O’Donnell’s estranged wife, Michelle Rounds, says she wants sole custody of their 2-year-old daughter Dakota because she wants her to have “a normal life.”
“Right now she has 24/7 nannies over there at Rosie’s house,” Rounds tells Entertainment Tonight. “I don’t want my child to have a nanny. I want her to be outside playing, I want to be with her. I want to go to all the parent conferences and that’s just not what it’s about over there.”
O’Donnell’s rep told PEOPLE earlier this week that Rounds seeking sole custody is “an absurd and desperate attempt to use a child for her own gain.” But Rounds says their differing parenting styles have always been a problem.
“I’m at my daughter’s every beck and call,” she says. “I give her mild discipline instead of like carte blanche, do whatever you want, which is more or less how Rosie likes to do things.”
Asked about speculation that she’s only trying to squeeze O’Donnell for more money in their divorce, Rounds said that amounted to “character assassination” and added: “I made my first million before the age of 39, that was before I met Rosie. I don’t need Rosie’s money, I don’t want Rosie’s money. The prenup money means nothing to me. I will walk away from the prenup if Rosie will give me full custody.”
On Tuesday, O’Donnell posted a photo online of Dakota with her hand raised, with the caption, “excuse me – do i get a vote?” On Wednesday, she added a photo of arts and crafts, writing, “when the going gets tough – craft #onlyLOVE.”
The comedian and former host of The View, 53, married the New York-based headhunter in June 2012. They separated last November. O’Donnell also has four older children with former partner Kelli Carpenter.