Sometimes, people's lives do not play out like we expect. Case in point, three-time Olympian Suzy Favor Hamilton.
The Smoking Gun recently issued a report of a shocking double life led by the wife and mother of a seven-year-old daughter. Over the past year, Favor Hamilton has been working as a $600-an-hour Las Vegas escort for Haley Heston’s Private Collection.
To her credit, she is not running from the allegations or offering up excuses. She is quoted in the report, and she has been vocal on Twitter. Here is one from a string of tweets offering up her take on the events:
I realize I have made highly irrational choices and I take full responsibility for them. I am not a victim here and knew what I was doing.— Suzy Favor Hamilton (@favorhamilton) December 20, 2012
The easy assumption here would be that financial problems forced Hamilton into this double life, but by all accounts, that was not the case.
As The Smoking Gun points out, Favors:
...operates a successful Madison, Wisconsin real estate brokerage with her husband, delivers motivational speeches, and does promotional work for various businesses and groups, including Disney’s running series and Wisconsin’s Potato & Vegetable Growers Association.
Once the need for money is ruled out, this story becomes much more difficult to comprehend—a fact that is not lost on Hamilton:
I do not expect people to understand, but the reasons for doing this made sense to me at the time and were very much related to depression.— Suzy Favor Hamilton (@favorhamilton) December 20, 2012
That is the thing with depression: It is not rational.
I am not going to judge Hamilton for anything she has done, and I hope she finds more sustainable sources of fulfillment as she battles her depression. What I will say is her future is going to be more difficult because of this revelation.
This is not shocking. Hamilton's athletic career made her a recognizable name, and it gave her name value. She was even the focus of this ad by Nike.
Hamilton never won an Olympic medal. She came close in 2000, but she was passed in the final 200 meters of the 1,500 final and deliberately fell when she realized she would not win a medal.
Professionally, Hamilton was clearly able to bounce back from that. It will be a different story with this latest dramatic turn of events.