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Tuesday 23 April 2019

'I sat still, looking away as he moaned and undulated' - Steve Jobs' daughter reveals troubling details about their relationship in her memoir

Lisa Brennan-Jobs has released a new memoir about her life as the daughter of Steve Jobs CREDIT: FACEBOOK
Lisa Brennan-Jobs has released a new memoir about her life as the daughter of Steve Jobs CREDIT: FACEBOOK

Payu Tiwari

Apple founder Steve Jobs is credited as a genius who transformed and inspired millions of lives through his technology.

However, he had a disturbingly dark side, according to his daughter Lisa Brennan-Jobs, who had a difficult relationship with her father and charts their ups and downs in a new memoir, Small Fry.

Lisa was born on May 17th 1978 on a commune farm in Oregon when her parents, who had met in high school in California, were both 23. While Jobs arrived several days after her birth to name her he refused to acknowledge she was his daughter, despite a DNA match.

In her memoir Lisa recounts her childhood and their often-fraught relationship. 

A New York Times article about the memoir, featuring an interview with Lisa, describes Jobs as "vicious" to Lisa and "those around her".

Speaking to Nellie Bowles for the publication, Lisa insists she did not want people to focus solely on the more troubling aspects of her father's personality and says she wanted to full represent "the dearness of and the pleasure" of being with him "when he was in good form".

However, Lisa describes several troubling instances in the book.  She reveals her father refused to install heat in her bedroom but in doing so, she says, he was not being "callous" but was rather instilling “a value system” in her.

In the interview, Lisa insists such instances from her childhood were simply her father teaching her lessons.  For example, when he insisted the Apple Lisa computer was not named after her, it was not a lie - he was teaching her "not to ride on his coattails".

His daughter was not the only one to experience his "infamous venom".  She describes one incident in which he turned on Lisa's cousin, Sarah, who had accidentally offended him by ordering meat.

“‘Have you ever thought about how awful your voice is?” Jobs asked. “Please stop talking in that awful voice...You should really consider what’s wrong with yourself and try to fix it.”

The memoir also describes Jobs exhibiting “inappropriate affection” to Lisa's step-mother in front of his daughter.  She said he engaged in it “because he didn’t know how to do better.”

In one incident, he embraced her tepmother by “pulling her into a kiss, moving his hand closer to her breasts,” and up her thigh, “moaning theatrically.”

Jobs stopped his daughter when she attempted to leave the room.

“‘Hey Lis,’ he said. ‘Stay here. We’re having a family moment. It’s important that you try to be part of this family.’ I sat still, looking away as he moaned and undulated.” she said.

However, she said she never felt threatened by such incidents, insisting it was "just awkward".

She also described how her father would upset her with his use of money.

“Sometimes he decided not to pay for things at the very last minute,” she said, “walking out of restaurants without paying the bill.”

If she was in charge of his money, she claims she would give it away to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

“Would it be too perverse?” she asked. “I feel like the Gates Foundation is really doing good stuff, and I think I would just hot potato it away.”

Small Fry is published on September 6 in Ireland.

Read more: Steve Jobs told daughter she 'smelled like a toilet' on his deathbed and said 'you're getting nothing'  

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