Allison Holker has finally built up the courage to participate in her first interview since the passing of her husband and father to her children, Stephen “tWitch” Boss. And while she’s still struggling to understand what happened, she’s doing everything she can to move on and be there for the people she loves.
Holker talked with People about what life was like when Stephen was still around.
“Stephen would hold my back every time I walked past him,” she remembered, noting how they often bonded over cooking dinner together.
They would make dinner for their family, Allison’s daughter Weslie, and their shared children Maddox and Zaia. During dinnertime, she explained, “We’d have so many random conversations, and there was so much laughter. Our love was so real and so loud. We always told people our house was like a choreographed dance.”
Boss was well-known throughout the dance and music industry as an enthusiastic, fun-loving person who never seemed to express anything short of a smile. So when he committed suicide on December 13 last year, it not only took the world by shock, but those closest to him as well.
“No one had any inkling that he was low. He didn’t want people to know,” she admitted. “He just wanted to be everyone’s Superman and protector.”
“It’s been really hard because I can’t understand what was happening in that moment [he died],” she added, noting how difficult it’s been since her husband’s death.
Holker started the Move with Kindness Foundation a few months after Boss died, which “aims to carry on the legacy of Stephen tWitch Boss by spreading love and mental health awareness,” according to the website.
For Stephen, she hopes he will be remembered as a “beautiful man”, and she thinks the charity will help propel that idea to not only her late husband, but to other people who are struggling with their mental health.
“We always hear, ‘Reach out to the strongest people,’ and I believe in that,” she started. “But I also want the messaging to be that if you’re feeling low or depressed, it’s okay to lean on someone else. Trust that people are still going to see you as that light even in your darkest moments.”
Allison has been particularly struggling with finding her “new purpose” without the help of spreading positivity with Stpehen. Luckily, she has some good friends to help her carry on and show her a different perspective in this new life she now has to lead. One of those friends is the “Keep Your Head Up” singer Andy Grammer.
“I expressed to [Andy], ‘How am I going to still live out what I know is my purpose — love and joy — and has always been my family’s purpose?’ He said, ‘Allison, it’s still your purpose. It just looks a bit different now — and it’s a little more depth-filled,’” she recalled. “I’ll never forget that conversation because I feel like I knew it inside of me, but hearing it from a friend that I still have that purpose is helping me move forward as well.”
With Stephen’s death, she became a source of therapeutic advice for people in her life – specifically men – whose minds became open to their own mental struggles. Initially, Allison had a difficult time being that outlet for these people who reached out to her, but then “I realized I want people to feel safe talking to me and to open up and understand that we have to support each other in these moments,” adding that she is choosing to fight against herself falling into a “dark place” for the sake of her own health and her children.
Holker continued to talk about how each day after Boss’ death got “harder and harder” and that she added cold-plunging at night to her daily practice, saying that it has helped her “spiritually and mentally”.
And while she copes with her children, she still finds time to be alone with Stephen, even if he’s not physically present.
“Stars are so important to me because that’s where we believe he is,” she said. “I knew I wanted to have him find peace. I was under the stars by myself and I told him, ‘I forgive you, and I hope you’re with us.’ Talking to him and expressing all those emotions of forgiveness and sadness but also love and joy was so healing.”
As she continues to find different ways of coping with her husband’s suicide, she’s yet to participate in what was their favorite activity to do together: dancing.
“I haven’t danced yet,” she confessed. “That’s gonna be a big step for me, but I know that I’ll get there. He’s guiding me on this path.”
Hopefully, someday soon she’ll get back out there and cut up a rug. And maybe Stephen will be there with her, leading and twirling her around like he always did.
If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline by dialing 988, text “STRENGTH” to the Crisis Text Line at 741741 or go to 988lifeline.org.