Cesar Millan decided to share the experiences of his divorce and his almost deadly struggle with depression. A struggle that he almost lost when he attempted suicide. He has opened up about his divorce and suicide in the hopes that his story can help other people who might be facing similar problems.
The 43 year-old dog whisperer said that in 2010, he hit what he calls “rock bottom” after the death of his favorite dog and the end of his marriage to wife Ilusion Millan . He was so distressed that he attemptedsuicide by taking an overdose of pills.
But before his suicide attempt Millan certainly seemed like he had it all together. His television show was phenomenally successful and it aired in more than eighty countries worldwide. His first three books, including Cesar’s Way, all became New York Times best sellers and have cumulatively sold two million copies in the United States as well as being available in 14 other countries.
In 2009, in conjunction with IMG, Millan introduced a monthly magazine titled Cesar’s Way. The The Wall Street Journal reported at that time that half of American consumers would recognise Millan if they saw him. With his former wife, Ilusión Millan he founded the Cesar and Ilusión Millan Foundation, which has since been renamed the Millan Foundation.
Then, according to Cesar, it all started to go wrong. First his beloved pit bull Daddy died. Then his wife of sixteen years told him she wanted a divorce. Following these two events, he realized he had neglected his finances, and was now in big trouble financially. Millan felt that he had no option left but suicide. He felt everything was his own fault.
Cesar talked about the string of events that lead to his attempted suicide. He said, “It’s like, ‘Okay, I’m a failure. The reason why this has happened is because of me.” He told of how almost three years ago he tried to end his misery. He said, “I just made a decision, took a whole bunch of pills, and tried to kill myself.”
Fortunately for Cesar, his two teenaged boys found him, and called an ambulance immediately.
Since then Cesar has worked to turn himself around and he sees life and himself in a more positive light. He said, “What makes you wise in life is not the successes. It’s when you go down and come back.”
Cesar is using his experience to help other people who might be facing similar low points in their lives. He talked to The Tampa Bay Times this week and said that his divorce and attempted suicide helped him to re-focus on the important things in life.
He told the Florida newspaper that, “You hear this sentence, ‘What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. That became real for me. It made me closer to people.” Millan also said that he hopes his experience will help the ones he loves to avoid the same struggle with depression.
The 43 year-old dog trainer went on to say, “I’m happy I went to rock bottom and now I know the symptoms. As a father I want to see the signs before my kid or anyone around me in my life has any kind of depression, sadness … My faith got stronger.”
Cesar Millan isn’t the first celebrity to open up about his depression and the price he almost paid for it, but he is hoping that people can learn from his example and see that, like him, they can survive the bad things that happen to them just as he survived his divorce and suicide attempt.
By Michael Smith