The mother of Scott Weiland’s teenage children has written a stark open letter, warning that artists will continue to die because the world looks on their problems as art.
Mary Forsberg Weiland says son Noah, 15, and daughter Lucy, 13, really lost their father years ago.
She‘s called on fans of musicians with drug issues not to ignore the truth of what they see, and revealed that her ex-husband all-but abandoned his children when he moved on from the marriage.
In a hard-hitting document published via Rolling Stone, and composed with the help of her children, Forsberg Weiland writes: “December 3 is not the day Scott Weiland died. It is the day the public will use to mourn him, and it was the last day he could be propped up in front of a microphone for the financial benefit and enjoyment of others.
“The outpouring of condolences and prayers offered to our children, Noah and Lucy, has been overwhelming, appreciated and even comforting. But the truth is, like so many other kids, they lost their father years ago. What they truly lost on December 3 was hope.”
She says the family don’t want to “downplay Scott’s amazing talent” but continues: “at some point, someone needs to step up and point out that yes, this will happen again – because as a society we almost encourage it. 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. And then we click “add to cart” because what actually belongs in a hospital is now considered art.
“Many of these artists have children. Children with tears in their eyes, experiencing panic because their cries go unheard.
“You might ask, ‘How were we to know? We read that he loved spending time with his children and that he’d been drug-free for years!’ In reality, what you didn’t want to acknowledge 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.”
Let’s choose to make this the first time we don’t glorify tragedy
Forsberg Weiland says she’d kept quiet at key moments in the past because she wanted to protect Noah and Lucy. “I knew they would one day see and feel everything that I’d been trying to shield them from,” she explains, “and that they’d eventually be brave enough to say, ‘That mess was our father. We loved him, but a deep-rooted mix of love and disappointment made up the majority of our relationship with him.’”
Weiland’s multiple health and addiction issues eventually made Forsberg Weiland ill herself, and she reports that, despite her attempts to provide a “feeling of normalcy,” authorities wouldn’t allow him to be alone with his son and daughter.
She says Weiland “replaced” Noah and Lucy when he moved onto his next relationship, and says they weren’t invited to his wedding and he often failed to send child support payments.
She continues: “I don’t share this with you to cast judgement. I do so because you most likely know at least one child in the same shoes. If you do, please acknowledge them and their experience. Offer to accompany them to the father-daughter dance, or teach them to throw a football.
”Even the bravest girl or boy will refrain from asking for something like that; they may be ashamed, or not want to inconvenience you. Just offer – or even insist if you have to.”
And she adds: “This is the final step in our long goodbye to Scott. Even though I felt we had no other choice, maybe we never should have let him go. Or maybe these last few years of separation were his parting gift to us – the only way he could think to soften what he knew would one day crush us deep into our souls.
“Let’s choose to make this the first time we don’t glorify tragedy with talk of rock’n’roll and the demons that, by the way, don’t have to come with it.
“Skip the depressing shirt with ‘1967-2015’ on it – use the money to take a kid to a ballgame or out for ice cream.”