WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama says he and the first lady are constantly reminding their daughters that they’re growing up in a “slightly unreal environment” at the White House.

In an interview published online Wednesday by Amazon’s Kindle Singles, Obama lamented a shift in culture toward consumption and the focus on celebrity lifestyles.

Obama says when he was growing up, “Kids weren’t monitoring every day what Kim Kardashian was wearing or where Kanye West was going on vacation, and thinking that somehow that was the mark of success.”

Obama says his daughters, Malia and Sasha, have family members who are in the middle class or even poor, so they see that others struggle and that their life is “not the norm.”

“They know that those kids are just as worthy they are, they just haven’t had as much luck,” said Obama in the interview.

Before the senator turned president was involved in politics, he was a part-time teacher who wasn’t sure about politics.

“In fact, when I was young, I was pretty skeptical politics,” said Obama. “I always thought that the compromises involved in politics probably didn’t suit me, and that I’d rather just go out there on my own, helping poor people and folks in need.”

The interview is available for free download.

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(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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