Jon Bon Jovi may be a huge rock star to most but to his kids he's just dad -- and his family would like to keep it that way.
"That’s his life, not ours," Dorothea, his wife of 27 years, told People magazine for a new cover story.
Sweethearts since high school, Jon, 54, and Dorothea have worked together to shield their four children -- Stephanie, 23, a college senior; Jesse, 21, a senior on Notre Dame’s football team; Jacob, 14; and Romeo, 12, from the spotlight.
"We never really drag the kids to things," said Dorothea Bongiovi, who, like the children, uses her husband's given last name. "I never pointed at the TV and said, ‘There’s Daddy!’ We try hard just to give our kids a normal life."
That means spending as much time as a family as possible, including eating dinner together.
"Family is always priority," Dorothea said.
Never was that more clear than when their daughter ended up in the hospital after an overdose of opioids while at college.
"It happens to a lot of families that you would never know," Dorothea said. "We dealt with it as a family."
"We couldn’t get any closer," Bon Jovi added, calling the incident "a terrible speed bump we got over."
The family is so close that when it's time for Bon Jovi to hit the road -- like he's about to do for his new album, "This House Is Not For Sale" -- he leaves "kicking and screaming."
"You see my fingernails in the driveway," he said. "I’m not a journeyman. I know some people who are applause junkies. I’m not."
Even his kids would rather be home than take advantage of the perks of having a rock star dad.
"I asked if they wanted to go to the show and they said, ‘Um, no. No thanks,'" Bon Jovi said about his two younger sons. "So that’ll keep you humble."