Lisa Marie Presley: After Son's Death, I Became a Sort of 'Pariah'

She pens essay for National Grief Awareness Day
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 1, 2022 2:20 AM CDT
Lisa Marie Presley: I Blame Myself for Son's Death 'Every Single Day'
Priscilla Presley, second from left, her daughter, Lisa Marie, second from right, and Lisa Marie's children, Riley Keough, 21, left, and Benjamin Keough, 18, right, take part in a ceremony commemorating Elvis Presley's 75th birthday on Friday, Jan. 8, 2010 in Memphis, Tenn.   (AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

More than two years after his death by suicide at age 27, Lisa Marie Presley is remembering her son Benjamin Keough in an essay for National Grief Awareness Day published this week by People. "I already battle with and beat myself up tirelessly and chronically, blaming myself every single day and that's hard enough to now live with," she writes, "but others will judge and blame you too, even secretly or behind your back which is even more cruel and painful on top of everything else." She says she's learned that grief never goes away, and that it is "incredibly lonely." Support groups are a must, she says. The third thing she's learned, she writes, is that "particularly if the loss was premature, unnatural, or tragic, you will become a pariah in a sense."

"You can feel stigmatized and perhaps judged in some way as to why the tragic loss took place," she continues. "This becomes magnetized by a million if you are the parent of a child who passed. No matter how old they were. No matter the circumstances." She admits she herself was guilty of this before losing her son: When she heard of a parent losing a child, "I also low-key judged them, and I swore I'd never do whatever it was that I felt they either did or neglected in their parental actions and choices with their child." She says Keough's death "completely detonated" her life and the lives of his three sisters, but that she must keep going on for the girls. Read the essay in full here. (Read more Lisa Marie Presley stories.)

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