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Pete Davidson Reveals He Learned His Dad Died On 9/11 While He Was Watching TV At 7 Years Old

The comedian says he snuck some TV after his mom grounded him in an attempt to keep him from learning what had happened to his fireman father.

YouTube screenshot of Pete Davidson
REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

Last week, Pete Davidson sat down with Jon Bernthal for an episode of Real Ones where he opened up about practicing "trauma therapy" to help manage and work through feelings associated with and rooted from PTSD stemming from childhood trauma.

Davidson's father, firefighter Scott Davidson, died on September 11, though the comedian who was seven years old at the time didn't find out for weeks.

The SNLalum revealed his therapy is focused on his feelings associated with his father not picking him up from school on that dreadful day.

"The sentence that my therapist and I have agreed on is: My dad told me he was gonna pick me up from school on 9/11."
"I got picked up by my mom."
"She didn't tell me what was going on for like three days."
"She kept telling me, 'Dad's at work, coming home...'"
"I had no idea."

Davidson also opened up about the way he learned his dad had died. He shared his mother told him he was grounded and, therefore, not allowed to watch TV.

But, knowing there were no terms on which he should have been grounded, Davidson went ahead and snuck in some television... and that's when he learned of the news.

He recalled:

"One night, I turn on the TV. I just saw my dad on TV."
"They're like, 'These are all the fireman that are dead."

He continued that the family still had hope, as people were being pulled from the rubble several weeks after the 9/11 attacks.

"We didn't know he was dead for like three weeks."
"They were finding people, they're pulling people out of sh*t, and there was just some sort of hope."
"It was just up and down and nobody knew how to deal with it."

You can watch the segment below.

Why does Pete Davidson make himself the butt of the joke? Jon Bernthal asks on Real

Davidson also commended his mother for doing her best in such a traumatic and harrowing situation.

"My mom was f**king like 30, [which] I'm about to be. I wouldn't know what the f**k to do."
"That's why, as I get older, I'm like, 'Man, my mom was awesome. She really loves me.'"
"Nobody knew the right way to deal with it and, whether or not that's right or wrong, it still f**ked the kid up or whatever."

Viewers of the interview applauded Davidson, who was diagnosed with borderline personality disorder (BPD) at 23, for willingly opening up about his trauma, his process and also navigating his fears associated with PTSD and BPD.

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

REAL ONES with Jon Bernthal/YouTube

Davidson also shared that Hollywood isn't the easiest place for him to deal with abandonment issues.

"You know - Dad says, 'I'll come and pick you up.' He doesn't, for life. I'm just, like... I don't believe anyone."
"And I'm trying to learn how to believe people. And Hollywood isn't exactly the greatest place to learn that skill, dude."

He continued:

"I'm gonna do my best I can and just keep doing that."
"But that's where it comes from and that's why I have a hard time trusting and believing people, and it's been an issue throughout my whole life."

And despite criticism, Davidson is not going to stop talking about his dad.

"I'm just trying to share little jokes here and there about him because I like to keep that memory alive."
"My dad was a great dude. Why is that a f**king problem?"
"I get defensive."
"It's my family."