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WWE’s The Miz Explains How Fatherhood Turned Him Into a Nice Guy

The Miz has had a big face-turn lately. But not the kind that happens in the wrestling ring.

USA Network

USA’s Miz & Mrs. is one of the most wholesome, family-friendly reality shows on television right now, which is surprising because, for most of his career, WWE Superstar Mike “The Miz” Mizanin has been the textbook-definition wrestling heel: crass, uncaring, and relentlessly self-centered.

That said, The Miz has grown a lot over the past few years, with both his real life and wrestling character taking a sharp turn following the birth of he and his wife’s (fellow WWE star Maryse) daughter, Monroe, in 2018. Fueled by dad power, the Miz may be poised for his best run yet as both a reality and wrestling star. Plus, they’re expecting a new kid, soon.

Ahead of Father’s Day, The Miz chatted with Fatherly about the challenges of being a celeb dad, embracing reality TV again with Miz & Mrs., who he goes for parenting advice backstage, how many kids Maryse and himself are aiming for, and more.

Gender Reveal where Miz and Maryse learned they will be having a Baby Girl. (Credit: Scott Brinegar)

First off, how are you holding up, man? My one-year-old has me exhausted, and I’m not working a WWE schedule and producing a reality TV show.

I feel like I’m in a constant state of exhaustion. Between traveling, getting home, and… literally, all I think about is wanting to get home to my daughter. I love seeing her, just, play. Every time I come home, even if it’s just a weekend doing live [WWE] events, then RAW, and Tuesday I get home, it feels like she changes.

Fatherly IQ
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They grow up fast!

No kidding. Every minute of every day. I want to see all these changes. I’m always on FaceTime trying to make sure I see her as much as possible, because I don’t want to miss anything, but no matter what, you’re going to miss stuff. Because ya gotta work! And when you get home, you don’t sleep unless she sleeps. When she takes a nap, that’s my nap time. When she’s up, I’m up. It’s the most work I’ve had to do in my entire life. Being a parent is the hardest job I’ll ever do.

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I should also say, congratulations to Maryse and yourself on the upcoming second daughter. You’re really going to be outnumbered now!

Thank you. I am destined to have all girls and that’s absolutely fine with me. I think it takes a certain type of man to raise strong, independent, beautiful women, and I’m the man for the job.

On that subject, one of the underlying themes of Miz & Mrs., and even your recent WWE storylines is your dad being a bit emotionally closed off. Is having girls kind of a relief, in the sense that you know you won’t be repeating that cycle? A lot of guys find it easier to express their feelings with daughters.

I don’t think I’ll be that guy. I’m definitely going to tell her I love her. I do it every day anyway.

You never have those “Oh God, I’m turning into my dad” moments?

One thing me and my wife and I have talked about, I never kiss my daughter on the lips. That’s not… I dunno, I don’t like that, and Maryse does. I find it weird, but I kiss my dog on the lips! My dog will lick me in the face. I can kiss my dog on the lips, but not my daughter. I dunno. There are things I want to instill in my daughter. I want to make sure she knows she’s loved. That she hears and it and she sees it. That she sees the love between her mother and myself as well.

Overall, Miz & Mrs. is really a very sweet, positive show. If you had told me, say, five years ago The Miz was getting a new reality show, this is isn’t necessarily what I would have expected. Was that something you specifically pushed for?

Y’know, it’s funny, five years ago it would have been a completely different show. But I’m glad we waited. We were actually offered a reality show almost five years ago, and I turned it down. I always felt it was a bad look. When I was on the Real World, you were looked at as a no-talent hack who was just on TV for the sake of it and can’t really do anything besides live life in front of the camera. At least, I guess that’s the way I always felt.

What changed your mind?

Now I look at reality television, and it’s not like that anymore, because everything’s “reality.” Everything’s Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and when you can be an executive producer and have control of what you put out there, and what you want out there, you can do something that you’re really proud of. That you genuinely love doing, and that’s something that my wife and I are very passionate about. We want to show you our lives, but we also want to make an entertaining, fun, and like you said, positive show that people can watch with their family and laugh at. It’s one of those things we set out to do, and I don’t think we would have been as successful five years ago, because I think this is what people want to see.

The show is also pretty thick with dad humor. Are you planning to weaponize the show in the future? If Monroe, say, breaks curfew, she’ll have to watch the naked photoshoot episode?

Oh my God. No, I’d never do that to my daughter!

Well, maybe keep the episodes on hand, just in case.

You know what I like about this show? It’s literally like a photo album. I was watching our first episode with Monroe, when she was born, and just to see how small she was. How I used to be able to put her in one hand. And now seeing her run around and be a toddler. I’ve got video documentation of her growth and professional editors who are making these things for me, so it’s kinda nice.

Is it a real dad’s club backstage in WWE now? A lot of the top guys are dads now, and most of them seem pretty involved.

Yes! There are a lot of dads backstage and a lot of dads giving good advice. R-Truth is the person I go to for all the best advice. I remember, I was childproofing my house, and he was just giving me amazing advice. He’s a wealth of knowledge because he has, I think, three or four kids.

I think we just wrote a WWE skit – “R-Truth babyproofs The Miz’s house.” Anybody else you go to for advice or dad chats?

Oh, yeah. Health Slater told me, “Dude, you’ll never love anything more than your daughters. Every time I come home, it’s like, a huge WrestleMania pop. I am the biggest star.” And I never understood it until I had Monroe, and now I totally get what he was talking about. It’s an interesting dynamic… you think you’d see the guys talking about working out and other manly things, but usually we just sit around talking about our kids.

The inevitable question — do you see either of your daughters getting involved in wrestling and WWE?

If that’s what they want to do. Hopefully…I’ll be the dad that can guide them in whatever direction they want to go in. I’m not going to force anything on them, but I want them to pursue things. Things that maybe they don’t like at first, but then they end up loving it. You know what I mean? I remember when I was a kid, I wanted to play guitar and my dad got me lessons and…I couldn’t do it. It was too hard. And I wish my dad had pushed me a little more, because now I’d be able to play guitar.

If my daughter goes “I want to play piano,” I want to be able to get her a piano and lessons, but when she tells me, “Ah, it’s too hard, I don’t want to do it” I want to be able to tell her, “Look, you may not want to do it right now, and it’s going to be hard, but you’re going to get better and better and in the end, when you’re older, it will be a tool you’ll have that you may love having.” That’s kinda what I want to instill in her. Whatever she wants to do, I want to give her the tools to do it and be special at it. So, if wrestling is one of those things, I will give her the tools that she needs to become a WWE Superstar. She’ll have a hell of a teacher.

Now, when will your mother-in-law Marjo be making her WWE debut? She’d make a pretty good heel manager, I think.

Ha! She’d make a great manager, but let me tell you something — Marjo is not coming into WWE. With my dad already being [in WWE], I’ve had enough. My dad calls me all the time, “Do you know how big of a star I am? I signed autographs for an hour today!”

He was the unsung hero of WrestleMania.

I’ve created a monster.

Miz & Mrs. season 2 is on the way. Any hints about what we can expect?

You never know what to expect with Miz & Mrs! Expect more George, more Marjo, more shenanigans, and a new baby! I don’t know what I’m gonna do.

The show frequently features little contests between Maryse and yourself. Will you actually win one this season, or will your Curt-Hawkins-like streak remain intact?

I try to win! But, honestly, “happy wife, happy life.” And hey, she’s usually right. That’s why she wins.

Will you be sticking to the new baby per season thing if you’re renewed for season 3?

Oh, my goodness. So, since we’re having another baby girl, I’m like, I want the best of both worlds! Soooo, I think we’re going to try for another. My limit I think is three. Maryse said her limit is four, but I think mine is three. Honestly, my limit was two, but now, I’m like, “Well, I do need an heir to the throne.” That is what we’ve been doing — we’ve been doing a kid per season, so maybe we need another one.