Oscar De La Hoya told RingTV.com that he has no regrets about going public with private turmoil that included an addiction to cocaine, infidelity to his wife and suicidal thoughts.
The former six-division titleholder would not go into detail about his demons in this interview but did so on camera for Univision (see above).
“Obviously, you know, living a lie for a lot of years is a lot of hard work,” said De La Hoya. “And there’s a lot of weight off of my shoulders. I feel wonderful, I feel blessed, and I feel great that a lot of the people that really love me are sticking behind me.
“They’re beside me, and it’s a wonderful thing. I feel reborn. I’ve been given a second chance, literally, at a life that I had let go to waste. Now I get to live life happily, and I get to live life to the fullest, and I get to live life the way that it’s supposed to be lived. So I feel wonderful. I feel great. Right now, my life is amazing.”
De La Hoya, 38, has said he’s been clean and sober for the last three months. He has left a rehabilitation center and become a member of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Here are some quotes from the Univision interview:
“Recently, within a couple of years, (I was) just thinking, ‘Is my life even worth it?’ I don’t have the strength, I don’t have the courage to take my own life, but I was thinking about it. It got to that point,” said De La Hoya, who has reconciled with his wife, Millie, after having been briefly separated.
“There were drugs. My drug of choice was cocaine and alcohol. Cocaine was recent. The last two years. The last two and a half years. I depended more on the alcohol than the cocaine. [The drugs] took me to a place where I felt safe. They took me to a place where I felt like nobody could say anything to me.
“It took me to a place where I can just reach out and grab my mom.”
De La Hoya’s mother died of breast cancer in 1990.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org