Emily Maynard: Former "Bachelorette" Talks Death of Boyfriend, Suicide Attempt, Life as Family of Four

Kimberly RipleyLife

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Emily Maynard appeared on both The Bachelor and The Bachelorette, and seemed as though she had life by the horns. That couldn't have been farther from the truth during that time in her life, however.

During an interview with People magazine, while promoting her new book, I Said Yes, Emily Maynard talks about things her fans never knew about her--way back when she first became a celebrity.

"Things haven't been super easy for me," she explains. "As great as things are now, it's been a struggle for me. My life definitely isn't perfect. Is anybody's?"

Emily Maynard goes on to explain that after a "happy childhood," she was sent to boarding school in Florida.

"I didn't feel like I fit in," she says, going on to explain that she often felt worthless, and that she was hospitalized twice within a six-month period of time--once when she threatened suicide, and once for overdosing on prescription pain meds.

"It really was a cry for help," she says. "I never really wanted to end things. I just wanted attention. It makes me sad to think about. I was so focused on the part of my heart that was empty that I couldn't see beyond where I was."

Life got better when Emily Maynard started dating NASCAR driver Ricky Hendrick. The two met when she was only 16 and he was 21. After she graduated from high school, the two moved in together, living in Charlotte, North Carolina. Within months, however, Hendrick died in a plane crash. Just days later, Maynard learned she was pregnant.

"The first couple of years were so hard," Emily Maynard says of life as a young, single mom to daughter Ricki, who is now 10. "I didn't know if I was coming or going. I was lost. I went to therapists but I knew nothing they would tell me was going to make me feel better. Mine was an issue of the heart that I needed to work out myself. And I knew that time would do that."

Maynard jumped at the chance to appear on The Bachelor. She fell in love with Brad Womack, and became engaged to him in 2011. The engagement ended just months later. The next year she appeared on The Bachelorette, and when the season ended she was engaged to Jef Holm. That engagement only lasted two months.

"I wanted that love so bad," she says. "I felt like there was something wrong with me if I couldn't make it work. But I look back now and see that the times I felt the lowest, God was still there for me, planning something better than I ever could have imagined."

Emily Maynard is a strong, practicing Christian.

She soon reconnected with old friend Tyler Johnson, and the two became engaged.

"Tyler is my very best friend," she says. "When he proposed, I was sobbing!"

Emily Maynard and Tyler Johnson married in June 2014, and in July 2015 their son Jennings was born. She now lives happily as part of a family of four.

Fans can pick up a copy of Emily Maynard's new book, I Said Yes, when it hits book stores on March 1.

Were you aware of the many struggles Emily Maynard once faced?

Kimberly Ripley
Kimberly Ripley is a freelance writer and published author from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. A wife, mom of five and 'Nana' to Lilly and Aiden, she loves cooking for her big family and watching HGTV in her spare time. Kim is guilty of starting way more home design projects than she can finish. Visit her at Twitter and Facebook.