updated 12/21/2007 AT 1:20 PM ET
•originally published 12/22/2007 AT 9:05 AM ET
Snoop Dogg says the bright lights of Hollywood almost blinded him to the value of his family life, but in the end he realized he didn’t want anyone else raising his children.
Snoop, 36, who allows cameras into his home life for the new reality series Father Hood, says he reached a crossroads three years ago, and almost made the wrong decision.
“I was going to split up with my wife,” he tells the Associated Press. “My wife wasn’t going to split up with me. You know, I was caught up. I was caught up with Hollywood, all the girls and the nightlife.”
But he had a revelation about the value of one path over the other. “I thought I was the man, and I was willing to give up what I had at home for that,” he says, “until I realized that what I had at home was irreplaceable. So I gave that up to go back home.”
In 2004, after almost seven years of marriage, Snoop (real name: Calvin Broadus) filed for divorce from his wife Shante. They later reconciled. And their three kids – Corde, Cordell, and Cori – were a major factor in that decision.
“I just don’t want another man raising my kids,” Snoop says. “That was the main goal. I had kids with my wife because I wanted to be with my wife. And those three babies are all wanted, and I wanted to be with them.”
In the years since then, despite some run-ins with the law, Snoop has attempted to reinvent himself as a family man, telling Ellen DeGeneres recently that coaching his little-league football team is a highlight of his life.
“Sometimes you lose focus because this Hollywood entertainment world can throw you off track,” he tells the AP. “That’s why you see me doing things like this television show and my own football league, and the positive things I do, because I’m back aware again.”