Priscilla Presley, the ex-wife of Elvis Presley, turned 78-years-old today on May 24, 2023. The businesswoman and actress has built a powerful career throughout her life, but it has not always been easy.
In 1994 her only child, Lisa Marie Presley (who died aged 54 in January 12, 2023), secretly married the King of Pop, Michael Jackson. The pair had met a handful of times, and their relationship blossomed quickly until they ran off together and tied the knot.
Priscilla later revealed how this was entire ordeal was stressful, however. Although Michael, at the time, was in the throes of sexual abuse allegations, these were not the issues Priscilla was worrying about behind the scenes.
She told The Guardian that it actually came down to Michael’s stratospheric fame: “Lisa knew I wasn’t happy about her marrying Michael Jackson. We had issues over it because of my experience of marrying somebody with that same iconic status.”
She ominously added: “And, in a strange way, maybe history was repeating itself… And maybe she saw something of Elvis in Michael.”
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As fans may recall, Elvis died extremely young at 42-years-old on August 16, 1977. After indulging in prescription pills in the 1970s, the King of Rock and Roll was found dead in the bathroom of his 14-acre property, Graceland. At the time, Lisa Marie Presley was just nine-years-old.
Michael was equally as famous as Elvis, and he was also a victim of a young death due to a heart attack caused by prescription drugs. Michael died aged 50 on June 25, 2009.
Priscilla went on: “As her mom, though, I was concerned as I could see it could be a disaster. At that point, the right thing to do would have been to bite my tongue, but I didn’t bite my tongue.”
Most of all, Priscilla worried that the relationship simply would not last. And she, of course, wanted her daughter to remain happily married in the years that followed.
“You know, I just didn’t know if it was authentic or not,” she confessed. “I just worried about if she was doing the right thing. I worried about… his agendas.”
Speaking about meeting Michael after her daughter married him, Priscilla laughed: “He was sweet. But I think he was a bit nervous of me. Well, I’m the mother-in-law!”
As Priscilla predicted, things did not end well for Lisa Marie Presley and Michael Jackson.
The pair’s split was announced in December 1995, just over a year after they were married. Michael’s publicist said the former couple “mutually agreed to go their separate ways” and were still “good friends”.
Lisa Marie later claimed the marriage erupted after she expressed reluctance in having a child with him. He reportedly threatened her by saying: “If you’re not gonna do it, [his nurse] Debbie [Rowe] said she’ll do it.”
Lisa Marie added: “We would get into arguments because that wasn’t how to handle it.”