“My mom has shown me kindness in so many ways,” Sambora wrote. “I struggle with anxiety, but about a year ago it was very debilitating. I live almost an hour away from her, and when I would have anxiety attacks, she would drive over and visit me. Any time of the day, she would stop what she was doing and come to comfort me.”
“When I would insist she did not have to, she would stay on the phone with me late into the night, until I was calm enough to sleep,” Sambora continued. “She did everything she could to help me get through those difficult months, from taking me to every doctor’s appointment to giving me tons of books on managing anxiety.”
According to the American Psychiatric Association, anxiety disorders are the most common mental disorders and can affect many adults at some point in their lives. While anxiety is a normal reaction to stress, anxiety disorders specifically can result in excessive, consuming worry and fear, impacting job performance, school work, as well as personal relationships.
Sambora said that even though anxiety can be difficult for others to understand, Locklear was always supportive and provided a safe space for her.
“My mom always made me feel heard,” said Sambora. “She never judged me and made sure I didn’t feel alone. This was so important to my mental health and helped me continue on with my life. I was also a full-time college student when this happened, and my mom’s kindness made me feel comfortable enough to open up to others about my mental health. She helped me see that it was possible for others to relate to me and understand my experience.”
“She is selfless and inspires me to be selfless as well,” added Sambora.
Locklear praised her only child to the outlet, revealing Sambora inspires her in many ways.
“Ava is an example to me to always try to find the good in someone,” said Locklear. “I have watched her from afar and up close throughout her life, and I aspire to be more like her. Her kindness is contagious. We are very close, and I am blessed to call her my daughter. She is completely unaware of all the good she brings to this world – it’s just who she is. I couldn’t be more proud of her.”
Locklear and the former lead guitarist for Bon Jovi, 61, were married from 1994 until 2007.
People magazine previously reported Sambora graduated with honors from Loyola Marymount University in May.