Shaunie O’Neal has carved out a lane of her own since her divorce from NBA champion, Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal. During their marriage, Shaunie began a career in hosting, working as a special correspondent for The Insider. Amid their split, she knew she wanted to be known as more than a basketball wife.
She created Basketball Wives, which she executive produces and stars in and has since 2010. But in spite of the drama and catfights on the show, Shaunie says it’s not a representation of who she is. If you ask her, her most important role is as a mother.
The O’Neals are parents to four kids together: Shareef, Amirah, Shaqir and Me’arah. Shaunie has a son, Myles, from a previous relationship, that Shaq raised as his own. Shaunie’s family life can be seen on her short-lived VH1 reality series Shaunie’s Home Court.
Shareef is following in his father’s basketball footsteps, currently playing at LSU. His healthcare, which consisted of open-heart surgery, was documented on season 7 of Basketball Wives. Shaunie and Shaq stood by his side the whole time.
Like her brother, Amirah plays basketball for the LSU Tigers women’s team. Me’arah also plays basketball but at the high school level. The youngest of the bunch, Shaqir, recently committed to Texas Southern University, where he too will be playing basketball.
While their split was contentious at first, the former couple now consider themselves good co-parents and best friends. “We have a great co-parenting relationship, seriously,” Shaunie told Tamron Hall in a recent interview. “It took us a long time to get there — don’t get me wrong, it was not an easy journey — but once we got there, and I think we felt comfortable being honest with each other and just sharing what was going on in our lives, in our personal lives to a certain extent.”