Rascal Flatts' Joe Don Rooney Addresses Rumors He's 'Transitioning to Be a Woman'

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Joe Don Rooney

Joe Don Rooney is setting the record straight.

The former Rascal Flatts guitarist and singer took to his X (formerly Twitter) account on Wednesday, Jan.3, to "send a message out to the world" regarding his health, newfound sobriety and rumors he's transitioning.

Rooney's lengthy update touched on a lot of topics, from the 2021 crash that "almost killed" him and subsequent DUI arrest, his sobriety journey, relationships, and, of course, an official statement denying the notion that he's in the process of transitioning.

"First off, I am alive! There have been so many rumors and opinions thrown around about me - but I’m finally healthy and ready for the world. And NO, I’m not transitioning to be a woman," he wrote. "That thought has never entered my mind. Nothing against the trans community whatsoever but I needed to set the record straight."

Rooney went on, opening up about his drinking, problems with alcohol and the Sept. 9, 2021 car accident that served as a wake up call for him to better his lifestyle.

"My life and career took a major detour at 4 in the early morning hours of Sep 9, 2021 when I ran square into a tree and about killed myself. I was drunk and I was so far gone with my life - I was completely out of control and finished with trying to fight the fears, depression and anxieties that had spun me out in a way I’ve never experienced before," he said.

According to the 48-year-old, his "drinking had been an issue for many years - and as they say in AA and treatment, it’s a progressive disease."

"I am living proof that the progressive nature of drinking can really ratchet up and as I grew older as an adult my drinking grew worse," he admitted. "I was not a good father - I was not a good husband - and I was not a good band mate to my business partners. I probably would’ve never taken responsibility for any of this if it hadn’t been for my car wreck on Sep 9, 2021."

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He credits his faith in God and the awful car wreck for ultimately inspiring his sobriety journey. "That event lead me to treatment for my alcoholism for 4 months in the beautiful mountains of Utah."

While in treatment, the country star said he felt so "ashamed" of himself and that it took months to understand the new tools he had been taught by clinicians, counselors, patients and AA.

But before he knew it, he was able to enjoy an entirely different lifestyle.

"My life has been changed forever - and I’m grateful for the change. I’ve been sober now for almost 28 months come this Jan 13," he shared. "I never believed I could actually live my life without drinking. It had become such a huge part of my daily and nightly routine. I had tried to stop on my own in the past but the powerful nature of alcohol always found its way back into my life."

Rooney concluded with an uplifting note, explaining he has "new healthy boundaries for the first time in my life," and that "only positive, loving, caring & understanding people may enter."

"It’s an absolute blessing in ways I can barely put into proper words," he added.

"Thank you for all the love, support and prayers. I promise you, I’ve felt them all and I’m super appreciative," Rooney concluded, "Here’s to making the best of 2024 and living our most healthiest, happiest and goal oriented lives ever!!"

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