Why Lisa Marie Presley Felt Like She Failed Ex-Husband Michael Jackson

Hollywood was on high alert as we watched the sad news about Lisa Marie Presley, who TMZ reported went into full cardiac arrest on January 12. The 54-year-old had attended the Golden Globes alongside her mother, Priscilla Presley, just two days earlier on January 10. On the day of her medical emergency, she was rushed to a nearby hospital and given epinephrine. Her first ex-husband, Danny Keough, who had been living with her, performed CPR on her until the paramedics arrived. Hollywood was particularly concerned considering her father, Elvis Presley, died of a drug-related heart attack at the young age of 42. Sadly, Lisa Marie died shortly after falling into a coma and being put on life support in the hospital.

As we mourn the tragic death of Lisa Marie, fans can't help but look back on her interesting life. Per Us Weekly, after divorcing Keough, her first husband in 1994, Lisa Marie also had high-profile marriages with Michael Jackson (1994 to 1996) and Nicolas Cage (for 107 days in 2002). She also married her guitarist Michael Lockwood in 2006 which ended in an ugly divorce 10 years later (though their split wouldn't be finalized until 2021, per People).

Out of all of her relationships, however, Lisa Marie felt like she let down her most infamous ex, Michael Jackson.

Lisa Marie Presley said Michael Jackson predicted his own death

Lisa Marie Presley's romance with the "King of Pop," Michael Jackson, was short-lived but full of love. The couple was only married for 20 months before Presley filed for divorce, per The Los Angeles Times. However, she defended Jackson until his untimely death from a drug overdose in 2009. In fact, Presley wished she could have helped him more and felt that she failed him.

"I wanted to 'save him'," Presley wrote on her MySpace blog in 2009 (via Us Weekly), as news of her ex-husband's death spread. She remembered a conversation they had during their marriage, some 14 years earlier, where Jackson admitted he was afraid he was going to die the same way her father, Elvis Presley, did. "Somehow he knew exactly how his fate would be played out," she wrote. She tried to help him, but ultimately couldn't. "In trying to save him, I almost lost myself ... I became very ill and emotionally [and] spiritually exhausted in my quest to save him from certain self-destructive behavior," she vulnerably revealed. She also wrote that it was "my biggest failure to date."

Presley said more about her extremely difficult decision to walk away from the relationship in an interview with Oprah Winfrey. "I saw that the drugs and doctors were coming in and they scared me and put me right back into what I went through with my father, so that ended it," she said. 

Lisa Marie Presley has also struggled with substance use

Lisa Marie Presley had difficulties with substance use herself, as both her famous father and ex-husband Michael Jackson did. Her addiction to cocaine, alcohol, and opioids became a focus of her lengthy and complicated divorce from musician Michael Lockwood, per The Daily Mail

Presley spoke openly about her addiction to opioids in the foreword for the 2019 book "The United States of Opioids" by Harry Nelson. "You may read this and wonder how, after losing people close to me, I also fell prey to opioids," she wrote, via Yahoo. She was prescribed the highly addictive pills following the 2008 birth of her twin daughters with Lockwood, Harper and Finley. "It only took a short-term prescription of opioids in the hospital for me to feel the need to keep taking them," she stated.

She described her recovery process as "a difficult path to overcome this dependence and to put my life back together." She encouraged an end to the epidemic through openness and honesty. "It is time for us to say goodbye to shame about addiction. We have to stop blaming and judging ourselves and the people around us ... That starts with sharing our stories." Presley also spoke about her recovery with Today (via Entertainment Tonight). "I really did come a long way," she said. Though Presley admitted she had a long list of faults, she revealed that "it's what you do with it after you learn" that matters. "And then you try to help others with it," she added.

If you or anyone you know needs help with addiction issues, help is available. Visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website or contact SAMHSA's National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP (4357).