It is hard to imagine that anyone can ignore Hrithik Roshan; harder still to believe that Hrithik might find this amusing. But that’s the script when he plays the part of real life dad to his two doting little boys, Hrehaan and Hridaan. "My son told me he was ignoring me and I was blown away by that. I burst out laughing," said Hrithik, who has been voted India’s Sexiest Dad by OK! India this month. Excerpts from an interview to the magazine.
What does being voted India’s Sexiest Dad mean to you?
It feels fabulous! It is a great compliment, more so because it breaks a certain stereotype. It proves that you can be a dad and be sexy at the same time — getting older is not an excuse to stop taking care of yourself. Titles like this, for parents, are great. You should have more of them! Someday my sons, Hrehaan and Hridaan, will feel proud of the fact that their father was India’s Sexiest Dad at one point.
Do you ever see yourself in the mirror and say: “Boy am I sexy?”
I say it a lot. Sometimes it amazes me how good I can look. But I say this because I’m shocked. Because the person I see in the mirror isn’t really me. It is the person created by the hairstylist, the designer, the makeup man, the photographer. If I thought I was born fantastic, I’d be like, “Okay”. But no, I’m always shocked.
Is it too hard to play dad, given all the other roles you have to play?
So far, I haven’t had any trouble with that. Besides, I don’t believe in over-indulgence. My boys are already quite independent. Being three-and-a-half and one, they sleep on their own. But sometimes when we’ve leave Hrehaan sleeping, and check in on him later, he’s up watching a film all by himself.
What do you bond with your sons over?
These days we are role playing — pretending to be in a jungle or playing superheroes like Spiderman, Krrish or Batman. We haven’t really got around to playing outdoor sports yet, but I am planning to take Hrehaan snowboarding in Dubai soon. I took hardly any time to pick it up and, if it is in the genes [smiles], I think he will learn quickly too.
With two boys, are you longing for a little girl?
I have my hands full at the moment and we’re satisfied. After Hrehaan, I had hoped that I would have the experience of being a father to a girl, but I don’t miss that now. Giving equal attention to two children is more than enough.
Have you done your share of diaper duty and bathing too?
(Smiles) Let’s just say I have done everything once.
Which of your personality traits have your sons have inherited?
The one that really stands out is them being stubborn. They are both really stubborn. Which is fantastic.
Surely not for your wife?
Eventually they will become firm about their beliefs. So being stubborn is a good thing, according to me. Whenever they are being stubborn, I look at Sussanne and tell her, “It’s a good thing that they are being stubborn. Don’t stop them.”
So how do they take to discipline?
I don’t have any rules in the house. Instead, I try to instil the logic behind things, even if they are not entirely ready for the reasoning yet.
What do you call your father?
Do your kids call you that as well?
I can never be ‘Papa’. That’s just scary. That’s my father. My kids call me “dad.” That’s cool. It’s me.