The Girl Next Door
Tom Cruise -- I Never 'Abandoned' Suri
Defends Parenting Skills in Lawsuit
Tom Cruise is declaring he's a damn good dad to Suri ... opening up for the first time about his divorce from Katie Holmes and how it affected his relationship with his daughter.
Cruise just filed docs in his $50 million lawsuit against the publisher of "Life & Style" and "In Touch" magazines for cover stories that claimed he "abandoned" Suri after divorcing Katie in June 2012.
In the docs, Cruise says ... "I have in no way cut Suri out of my life -- whether physically, emotionally, financially or otherwise."
He goes on to cite specific times he saw his daughter in person in the months following the divorce, and says ... "even during the times when I was working overseas and was not able to see Suri in person, we were (and continue to be) extremely close."
The docs are pretty revealing ... since Tom has said next to nothing publicly about the divorce from Katie.
Cruise admits he was busy shooting 2 movies when "In Touch" ran its headline, "Abandoned by Daddy" -- however he says, "As my numerous emails with Suri's mother during this time period demonstrate, I was a constant presence in Suri's life."
Tom's declaration continues ... "While I'm sure my daughter misses me when I am not with her (as I miss her), she is a very happy child, and we have a wonderful relationship and cheerful phone calls."