Why ‘Dance Moms’ Abby Lee Miller Blames Her Jail Time for Making Her Paralyzed

Fans have been captivated with Dance Moms since it first hit our TV screens back in 2011. While viewers loved watching the amazing dance talent from the young girls who graced the Abby Lee Dance Company, we also couldn’t get enough of Abby Lee Miller. Love her or hate her, the owner of the company knew how to draw in a crowd — and she was also completely dedicated to making the young girls into stars.

After a long stint away from the show due to prison and cancer, Miller is back — and she’s been talking about what serving her jail sentence was really like. Here’s why she ultimately thinks her prison time caused her paralysis.

Abby Lee Miller served 8 months in prison for bankruptcy fraud

It felt like Miller just couldn’t catch a break back in 2017. Us Weekly reminds us the star was set to serve 366 days in prison after being sentenced for bankruptcy fraud. Not only was she accused of fraud, but she was also convicted of bringing in $120,000 worth of Australian currency without reporting it once it was in the U.S. All of this resulted in thousands of dollars in fines as well as her year-long sentence (which she was able to reduce to 8 months) and years spent under supervised release afterward. As she told Us Weekly at the time, “It’s surreal! I keep thinking someone’s gonna call and say, ‘Oh, it was a mistake!’”

While Miller certainly didn’t feel ready for prison, she was also unprepared for her life-threatening battle after her release — and that was with cancer. Women’s Health reminds us Miller thought she had a rare spinal infection that needed surgery upon her release, but it turned out to be non-Hodgkin lymphoma. While she told Inside Edition she’s currently cancer-free, she’s wheelchair-ridden and had to undergo 10 rounds of chemotherapy and countless surgeries.

She said the prison took her medications, which she thinks led to her paralysis

Miller has finally come forward to Inside Edition to explain how difficult and terrifying her prison experience really was. She told the publication during an interview that “the first day was the worst for me,” as she detailed an incident where they tried to “rip” her “eyelashes off that were extensions.” Not only that, but she explained that the guards would come looking for her specifically, and they would spray soda on all of her clothes.

Even worse, Miller believes the prison is partially responsible for her paralysis. While the tumor that was wrapped around her spine is the major reason she can’t currently walk, she mentions in the interview with Inside Edition that she believes the poor medical care she was given while in prison contributed to her current state. According to the star, the prison took away her diabetes and thyroid medication. “I think taking my medicine away led to this entire issue and the reason I’m in a wheelchair and I’m handicapped,” she said.

Miller’s still in a wheelchair but getting stronger every day

In the interview, Miller mentioned how angry she is regarding her prison sentence and the state of her health. “I also have days where I wish I would’ve died,” she said. “It’s frustrating. It’s very frustrating.”

The good news is she’s back to being able to feel her legs again even if she still relies on her wheelchair. And since she’s totally cancer free and is finished with chemo, fans are expecting to see the state of her health get much better as she moves forward. In the trailer for the upcoming Dance Moms Resurrection, we see Miller announce to the child dance hopefuls, “I’ve fought hard to be here, and you have to be a fighter too.”

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