This Woman's Heartbreaking Letter About Her Late Ex-Husband Shows The Reality Of Substance Abuse
It's been less than a week since the death of 48-year-old Scott Weiland, former Stone Temple Pilots singer, but his ex-wife Mary Forsberg Weiland is ready to open about her family's loss.
In a letter published by Rolling Stone on Monday, Mary — mother of Scott's two children, Noah, 15, and Lucy, 13 — says she and her children didn't lose Weiland on December 3rd; they lost him years ago.
Instead, the 3rd "is the official day the public will use to mourn him," she wrote. "And it was the last day he could be propped up in front of a microphone for the financial benefit or enjoyment of others."
According to the magazine, Noah and Lucy helped her write the note.
Although they "don't want to downplay Scott's amazing talent, presence or his ability to light up any stage with brilliant electricity," they also don't want to glorify his death — and those of other rockers — "with talk of rock and roll and the demons that, by the way, don't have to come with it."
In the letter, Mary shares her family's struggle with Scott's substance abuse, which may have led to his death. (On Friday, police in Bloomington, Minnesota, said cocaine was found on the tour bus where he died, but his cause of death has not yet been confirmed.)
"Even after Scott and I split up, I spent countless hours trying to calm his paranoid fits, pushing him into the shower and filling him with coffee, just so that I could drop him into the audience at Noah’s talent show, or Lucy’s musical,” Mary wrote. “Those short encounters were my attempts at giving the kids a feeling of normalcy with their dad. But anything longer would often turn into something scary and uncomfortable for them.”
Though much of the letter focused on the toll his behavior took on her and her children, who she claims were "replaced" when he remarried, she also emphasizes that we must stop fetishizing tortured artists on drugs by continuing to consume their content and acknowledge the people those in the spotlight may be hurting.
“We read awful show reviews, watch videos of artists falling down, unable to recall their lyrics streaming on a teleprompter just a few feet away,” she wrote. “And then we click ‘add to cart’ because what actually belongs in a hospital is now considered art.” But what we don't recognize, she added, is that this man "was a paranoid man who couldn’t remember his own lyrics and who was only photographed with his children a handful of times in 15 years of fatherhood.”
"I won't say he can rest now, or that he's in a better place," Mary said. "He belongs with his children barbecuing in the backyard and waiting for a Notre Dame game to come on. We are angry and sad about this loss, but we are most devastated that he chose to give up."
You can read the entire heart-wrenching letter here.