While some people struggle with drug addiction their entire lives, it essentially snuck up on Lisa Marie Presley. During a Today show interview that aired on Friday, the daughter of the King revealed that her battle with drug addiction began at 45.
Now 50, Presley found her way to the other side — but she’ll be the first to tell you it wasn’t easy. “I’ve come a long way. I was not happy. The struggle in addiction, for me, started at 45 years old. It wasn’t like it was all my life.”
To get clean and stay clean, Presley sought help, saying, “I am proud. I really did come a long way. I have a therapist and she’s like, ‘You’re a miracle. You really are.’ She’s like, ‘I don’t know how you’re still alive.’”
In the years following the shocking death of Presley’s legendary father, Elvis, details of the late musician’s life revealed a prolonged pattern of prescription drug abuse. In his memoir My Brother Elvis: The Final Years, Elvis’ stepbrother David E. Stanley wrote, “Beyond all the fame, fortune and hype, Elvis was a simple man who loved the Lord, his family and his fans. A man who was haunted by demons and insecurities that plague us all, and eventually lost the battle of addiction, as too many often do.”
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As for Presley, she’s determined not to fall victim to such a fate. Although she admitted to Today’s Jenna Bush Hager that she’s “not perfect,” she also noted that the most important part of recovery is “what you do with it after you learn” from your mistakes.
“And then you try to help others with it,” Presley said, perhaps hinting at why she was willing to be so open and vulnerable with her addiction story.
But suffice it to say that — even though he couldn’t escape his demons — the King still played an integral part in helping Presley beat hers.
Speaking about her new tribute album to her dad, Where No One Stands Alone, Presley explained that the music (and the memories of her father rooted in that music) helped bring her back from the brink. “This particular record and this song absolutely does [bring memories back] for me and brings me closer [to him],” she said. “It sort of grounded me in the middle of the never-ending tidal wave. It kind of came down and grabbed me, really.”