Lamar Odom‘s 18-year-old daughter Destiny is opening up for the first time about the pain and heartbreak of her father’s drug addiction — and her crucial role in his recovery.
When Odom, a former Los Angeles Lakers star, was hospitalized after being found unconscious at a brothel in Nevada in October 2015, his daughter thought he was going to die.
“It was a school night when I found out,” she says in the new People/Entertainment Weekly (PEN) feature, Surviving A Father’s Addiction: Lamar Odom’s Family Speaks Out. “We all thought that he was, that this was it for him and he was going to pass away. But, life is so crazy.”
During that first visit with her father in the hospital, Destiny, his daughter with ex Liza Morales, sat and talked to him for 30 minutes.
“The next morning he was ripping tubes out of his mouth and I don’t really think that’s a coincidence,” she says. “I don’t really think that’s a coincidence. I think he was meant to be here because of me and my brother. It sounds like a cheesy movie, but I think that everything happens for a reason.”
Destiny and her brother Lamar Jr., 14, also decided to hold an intervention for their dad.
“With close family friends,” she says. “I basically gave him the ultimatum that it was rehab or me not speaking to him anymore.
“I think that hit him really hard.”
Before Odom checked into rehab in December, he appeared on an episode of The Doctors to talk about his battle with addiction. In the interview, the former Los Angeles Lakers star revealed he “wasn’t in a good place mentally” before he nearly lost his life to a drug overdose.
“When your parent is an addict and they get clean it’s like a whole new world,” says Destiny. “A whole new person, really. It’s crazy what therapy and rehab can do to a person.”
She adds: “He’s just a lot more clear and in the moment and he’s more apologetic. He’s able to see more the pain that he’s caused when he’s clean.”