Tyler Perry Opens Up About His Own Suicide Attempts As He Remembers Stephen ‘tWitch’ Boss
Tyler Perry is opening up about his past suicide attempts while paying tribute to the late Stephen “tWitch” Boss. The dancer, producer and actor died on Tuesday, shocking his family, friends and fans. He was 40 years old.
“I’ve only met [Boss] a couple of times, but he always full of life and seemed like such a light,” Perry said in a video posted to his Instagram page on Wednesday.
The director and filmmaker admitted that he had tried to die by suicide “a couple of times” when he was in a dark place.
“I didn’t think it would get any better. I had endured so much pain, so much abuse, sexual abuse. It was all so hard to just move through I thought the only way to make this better, this pain to go away is by ending my life,” he said, urging viewers who are going through similar experiences to reach out to someone. “Had any of those attempts happened, I would have missed the best part of my life.”
Perry also explained that feeling as though his pain was for a greater purpose helped him persevere during his difficult time. “My life now, I’m the happiest I’ve ever been. Life is full of joy, love. Things I never thought I’d get to,” he shared. “If you are a person who is considering suicide, ending your life and you’ve already been through a lot of hell, please, please, please think about what the other side could be. It could be amazing. And you would miss the best part of it going through the darkness. Don’t let the darkness stop you from getting to this incredible place of light.”
Perry added that he’s a living witness that things can get better. “I’m so glad my attempts didn’t work,” he said.
The world was introduced to Boss in 2008, when he competed and became the runner-up on “So You Think You Can Dance”. Boss also appeared on the big screen alongside Channing Tatum in “Magic Mike XXL”.
He became well-known for his role as the house DJ for “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” from 2014 until the end of the series in 2022. In 2020, DeGeneres made him an executive producer, and at the start of each episode, tWitch would get the audience pumped up with his dance moves.
TMZ was the first to report that Boss had died. According to the outlet, Boss’ wife, Allison Holker, entered a Los Angeles police station and reported that her husband had left home without his car.
ET can confirm that Boss checked into the Oak Tree Inn on Monday. When he didn’t check out at 11 a.m. PT the next morning, housekeeping and management knocked on his door “repeatedly.” When there was no answer, management opened the door, saw a body on the floor and immediately called the police.
A rep for the Los Angeles Police Department Media Relations told ET that “investigators determined that the decedent died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound and there were no signs of foul play. The case was handed the over to the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office.”
A spokesperson for the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner told ET, “The decedent was pronounced dead at the scene on Dec. 13, 2022 at 11:25 hours.”
“It is with the heaviest of hearts that I have to share my husband Stephen has left us,” Holker shared in a statement to ET. “Stephen lit up every room he stepped into. He valued family, friends and community above all else and leading with love and light was everything to him. He was the backbone of our family, the best husband and father, and an inspiration to his fans.”
“To say he left a legacy would be an understatement, and his positive impact will continue to be felt,” Holker continued. “I am certain there won’t be a day that goes by that we won’t honour his memory. We ask for privacy during this difficult time for myself and especially for our three children.”
Boss’ wife ended her statement with one final message to her husband. “Stephen, we love you, we miss you, and I will always save the last dance for you.”
Boss and 34-year-old Holker are parents to 14-year-old Weslie, 6-year-old Maddox and 3-year-old Zaia.
The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention, Depression Hurts and Kids Help Phone 1-800-668-6868 all offer ways of getting help if you, or someone you know, may be suffering from mental health issues.