In an exclusive interview with Closer Weekly, country legend Naomi Judd opens up about overcoming her incredible battles and how she is celebrating life now at 71 years old. “It’s a miracle that I’m still here! I don’t know how I’ve made it this far,” Naomi admits to Closer of her health. “But here I am, fully oriented to life, and an overachiever!”
She is well-known for conquering the country music world with her daughter Wynonna, but she’s also survived abuse, severe depression, a trip to the psych ward, and a 1990 hepatitis C diagnosis, during which doctors gave her three years to live. Naomi says the support of her family — daughters Wynonna, 53, and actress Ashley Judd, 49, and her husband of 28 years, singer-manager Larry Strickland, 71 — certainly helped.
Naomi and Larry in 2004.
Naomi reveals when she was first diagnosed with severe treatment-resistant depression and extreme panic disorder, that nothing worked. “Finally, with months-long therapy sessions, I figured out all the stuff I’d stuffed down my whole life,” she explains. “The first memory I had was being molested by my uncle. I was beaten and raped by an ex-con on heroin when I was 22. My great-grandfather was a mass murderer, and after his son became my grandfather, my grandmother murdered him.”
“Some brilliant experts on mental disorders helped me recover and realize how much control I have in my current life,” she tells Closer. “And after dealing with this, I’m now the healthiest that I’ve ever been!”
For more on Naomi, pick up the latest issue of Closer Weekly, on newsstands now — and be sure to sign up for our newsletter for exclusive news!