Billy Horschel wins PGA Tour event
Wife Brittany opens up on alcoholism
From the outside it looks like a dream life – making vast amounts of money playing golf for a living.
But Billy Horschel is proof golfers and their families are battling the same human frailties as everyone else, after his wife opened up on her fight with alcoholism.
The 30-year-old Horschel pocketed $1.35 million for his playoff victory against Jason Day at the AT&T Bryon Nelson in Irving, Texas at the weekend, a victory he described as the most “emotional” of his four PGA Tour titles.
Afterwards he alluded to recent struggles, without elaborating, and most assumed he was talking about breaking a three-year win drought – until wife Brittany took to social media Monday.
She confessed in an open message on Twitter she was an alcoholic, saying “last year came with extreme struggles” and described it as a “very sad, scary and trying time.”
Brittany spent May to July of 2016 in a south Florida treatment center, but says she has now been sober for one year.
In that time, Horschel looked after their 18-month-old daughter Skylar, moved the family into a new house in Florida, played on Tour and cared for his wife.
“He deserves to soak in the glory of his win, throw his feet up and just let out a long deep breath,” wrote Brittany.
“Billy, you are my rock and the living testament of unconditional love.”
Horschel, who won the Tour’s season-long FedEx Cup title in 2014 (and the $10 million bonus), said he had no idea his wife was about to take their struggles public when she sent him the final draft of her statement.
He told her, “We don’t need to do this. We can dip and dive and dodge around these questions no problem, we can wait until you’re ready.”
In a news conference Tuesday of this week’s PGA Tour stop in Texas, he went on: “She said ‘no, I’m ready. I’m ready to take the next step. I’m ready to start helping people.’”
Horschel added: “You really never know what is going on in someone’s lives, and that has certainly been true this last year for me.
“There are so many families out here who struggle with any variety of issues. We’re not any different, aside from being more in the public eye, which provides us with an opportunity to speak out about the very real struggles of battling addiction.
“It can be a very lonely disease, and there is a stigma out there that leads many not to ask or accept the help they need. My wife and I hope that sharing our story will help other people who are either struggling with addiction, or are their loved ones.”
The couple has been married since 2010 and recently welcomed another daughter, Colbie Rae, in April.