Bantamweight world champion Ronda Rousey seems very close and connected to her judo world champ/Ph.D. mother, Ann Maria DeMars, as well as the rest of her family. When asked after UFC 190 what was most memorable about her latest victory, the champ spoke of having the resources and time to bring her family with her to Brazil to enjoy a vacation afterwards.
Suffice to say, Ronda is a family woman, among other things. She smartly still seems to rely on her mom’s advice for things in and out of the cage.
In a recent post on her excellent blog, Rousey’s mom spoke glowingly about her daughter and how grounded she’s stayed despite her wealth and fame. However, DeMars also expressed some pretty blunt worry about the types of people Rousey sometimes allows inside her circle.
"I’m her mom so of course I think Ronda Jean is a whole cupcake of amazing, frosted with awesome sauce and sprinkles of sweetness on top," she wrote.
"However, I think some of the people she hangs out with are douche bags."
DeMars went on to admiringly describe how Rousey was up babysitting for family late into the night just hours before she recently appeared on Good Morning America, and how she picks up nieces from school, just like any non-famous, excellent aunt might do. However, the former world champion also said that she believes the current UFC champ is starting to have a bubble develop around her where people are afraid to tell Ronda the truth, even when she needs to hear it.
"Here is what I see. The more famous, wealthy or successful you get, the more people are afraid of you. Most people are not fabulously famous, etc. so you end up with a lot of people around you whose major quality to offer to the world is that they are associated with YOU," she continued.
"No matter how wonderful anyone is, they will do stupid s— from time to time.
"The difference if you are rich and famous is that people don’t call you on your s—.
"Sometimes, people will say to me privately that they disagree with some decision Ronda has made. They might go on at length and in great detail. When I suggest that they tell Ronda that to her face, they make a lot of excuses. One person even suggested that I go with him when he talked to her. I refused, even though I agreed with his opinions. He’s a grown man but he’s afraid that if he disagrees with her then she won’t let him hang around any more and he won’t get to be a big shot.
"Frankly, the whole thing makes me sick."
Given how awkward and potentially conflict-causing a public post like this could be, one has to imagine or at least hope it is because DeMars has sincere concern for her daughter as she becomes one of the most famous and wealthy athletes in the world. Here’s hoping that Ronda stays Ronda, and that none of the common pitfalls of the rich and famous ever befall her; right now, she’s doing a pretty damn good job of setting an example to follow.