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Willie Nelson Reveals He Tried to Commit Suicide a 'Couple of Times' During His 'Drinking Days'

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Source: mega

Dec. 21 2023, Published 5:06 p.m. ET

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Willie Nelson opened up on his mental health and substance use struggles in his new Paramount+ docuseries, Willie Nelson & Family.

The "On the Road Again" singer, 90, revealed there was a time when he was "fighting worse than ever" with his first wife, Martha Jewel Matthews, which led to him "drinking more than ever."

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willie nelson tried commit suicide couple times drinking days
Source: mega

Willie Nelson is 90 years old.

"I would get drunk every night and go home with someone different every night," he told the cameras. "[I was] slowly self-destructing. I really didn’t care."

"Back in my drinking days, I tried to commit suicide a couple of times," he shared. "One time in the dead of winter I was so down on myself I laid down in the middle of the street hoping a car would run over me. No such luck. I had to get up off my a-- and kept on trying to figure out how to make a living."

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willie nelson tried commit suicide couple times drinking days
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Nelson admitted to struggling with suicidal thoughts when he was still drinking.

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In another excerpt of the series, he reflected on meeting 16-year-old Matthews while she was working at a restaurant in 1952. He was 19 years old at the time.

"She was a dark-haired beauty, a full-blooded Cherokee," he recalled. "Her eyes set my soul on fire, and her name was Martha Jewel."

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willie nelson tried commit suicide couple times drinking days
Source: mega

Nelson has been married four times in his life.

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Nelson revealed things got serious with Matthews, but his mother did not want them to get married because they were both so young. In the end, they decided to elope.

However, their relationship — which lasted from 1952 through 1962 — was far from all sunshine and roses.

"We had a lot of fun together but we fought, and we both were drinking a lot in those days," he continued. "One morning we got in this argument, and she picked up this fork and threw it across the table and it stuck in my side. It sounded like a tuning fork.”

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willie nelson tried commit suicide couple times drinking days
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Nelson shared 3 children with his first wife, Martha Matthews.

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Matthews and Nelson welcomed three children together — Billy, Susie and Lana. They divorced in 1962 and Matthews later passed away in 1989 from liver failure.

However, Billy tragically died by suicide in 1991.

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The "Always on My Mind" artist's second youngest son, Lukas, 34, who he shares with his current wife, Annie D'Angelo, admitted that he was inspired by his father's difficult life.

"Dad has been homeless, he’s had his house burnt down, he’s been through four marriages, he’s been up and down, he’s been broke, he’s [fought] the IRS, he’s lost a child," Lukas explained. "That’s what makes him inspiring to me: His resilience in the face of adversity."

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