Former Florida Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum released a video on Monday, his first statement since entering rehab after he was discovered in a Miami Beach motel room with crystal meth and two other men, one of whom was a gay escort.
Gillum said his 2018 loss in the Florida governor’s race to Ron DeSantis sent him into a spiral: “I didn’t want to talk emotionally or really deeply about what had happened in the race for governor because it was a constant reminder of failure and my own personal failures. It was a reminder that I had let so many people down. All the things I wanted to suppress and numb and forget about, that depression around what I was experiencing there became far too much for me to keep down. And that’s the real crazy thing about depression. A lot of time we think we’re dealing with it, we’re strong and we’ll put on a brave face and it bubbles up on the inside but eventually what bubbles up on the inside is going to come out.”
Gillum said that he “got busy” giving speeches and traveling after the loss but “in truth [he] was perfecting what it meant to wear the mask, suffering in silence.”
“Don’t be like me. Don’t suffer in silence. Get access to the help that you need,” Gillum said. “Nobody has it all together.”
Gillum spoke about COVID and Black Lives Matter and said he’s been doing a lot of writing in his spare time.
He also thanked his wife, “a woman who knows everything that I am and everything that I am not and she chooses to love me anyhow. A woman who is literally God’s grace on Earth. The epitome of grace. I can’t thank her enough for not just standing by me but encouraging me through this.”