“Jealousy for sure, at least on my part,” Michael, 44, confessed during a sneak peek of an upcoming episode of The Checkup With Dr. David Agnus about why they weren’t close in the past.
The That ‘70s Show alum, for his part, recalled having guilt when his career took off and Michael, who was born with cerebral palsy and had a heart transplant, continued to have health setbacks.
“How do I get to be this lucky? And for my brother to be born with cerebral palsy, then have a heart transplant, then have this random blood clot,” Ashton, also 44, explained in the teaser clip via Entertainment Tonight. “These things where you’re like, ‘Who has to go through that? How do I get to be this lucky?'”
The Dude Where’s My Car? Star remembered having a lightbulb moment when Michael finally told him how his worries were negatively affecting his own progress.
“There was a moment in all of this where I moved to New York and was starting to get some traction with my career and Mike came out to visit and stay and he looked at me and he said, ‘Every time you feel sorry for me, you make me less,'” Ashton recalled. “He said, ‘This is the only life I’ve ever known, so stop feeling sorry for the only thing I have.’ And that then created an entire shift back to where I think we are today, which is straight up equals. That’s it.”
The Ranch alum, who got emotional during the siblings’ sit-down with Dr. David Agnus, previously spoke out about Michael’s cerebral palsy diagnosis in 2003. At the time, Michael was upset that his brother shared his story with the public.
“I was very angry. Very angry. I remember speaking to him about it,” Michael told Today in May 2021. “I didn’t want to be the face of CP. I never talked about it.”
Looking back, Michael confessed that Ashton, whom he calls by his real name, Christopher, helped him to be able to live his truth by exposing his health struggles.
“Chris did me the biggest favor he’s ever done because he allowed me to be myself,” he told the outlet. “I realized I needed to let go of the shame I felt and be a champion for people [with severe disabilities]. I was finally ready to tell my story and I knew because of my twin, I’d have a big reach.”
Ashton, meanwhile, revealed in August that he was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disorder that left him bedridden and wondering whether he would ever walk or see again. The Just Married star, who told his story on an episode of Running Wild With Bear Grylls: The Challenge, explained that two years prior he was battling vasculitis, which “knocked out my vision” and hearing as well as his equilibrium. He has since fully recovered.
The Checkup With Dr. David Agnus premieres on Paramount+ Tuesday, December 6. The final three episodes will drop on Monday, December 12.
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