Joel Chan considers himself a lucky person for being able to bounce back from adversity after he hit rock bottom.
After a slew of unfortunate events that thrusted him into the public eye for the wrong reasons, Chan gave everything up and retreated under layers of guilt and shame.
While the public wrote him off with pity and scorn, his family moved in to support him, which proved successful as he managed to turn his life around.
Handed a second chance now, Joel is grateful for the support he received and has pubicly apologied for the grief he had caused his loved ones, including ex-wife Ponny Yeung, reported Ming Pao via Jaynestars.
Born to a well-to-do family in Macau, Joel was the youngest child and a sibling loved by two older brothers and four older sisters. While many of his siblings ventured into the business world, Joel’s adventurous spirit brought him into the colorful entertainment industry.
Chan was slowly working his way to the top in TVB when he made a choice that he now regrets. In 2011, he announced that he had divorced Yeung, who is six years his senior, and went on to publicly pursue much younger heiress Florinda Ho.
Sadly for him, that relationship fizzled out just two years later.
Although many speculated that he was dating Florinda for her money, Joel insisted that he did not spend even a cent as he reflected on his scandal.
With healthy savings, he was able to avoid falling into debt during unemployment, and even managed to pay alimony to Yeung on time.
While he has found some solace in providing for his ex-wife financially, Chan understands he may never be able to truly make up for the blow he dealt to her.
“I feel that she is a person I have wronged, so I should take responsibility [for my actions]. We will take things slowly; it is difficult to become friends again so soon after what had happened,” he said.
Joel felt even more ashamed when discussing the scandal’s impact on his family. Feeling defeated after his break up with Florinda, he hid from the world in a smaller home while his mother took care of his daily needs.
Even though he is now ready to face the consequences of his own mistakes, he became teary-eyed as he recalled his father’s concerned phone call when the tabloids broke the news on his alleged infidelity.
Helpless, the only thing he could do was to tell his parents to ignore the gossips.
While his whole family was loving and supportive, it was his favorite brother, Chan San Hoi, who inspired his change and to whom Joel owes the biggest apology.
Breaking down in tears, Joel recounted San Hoi’s guilt in failing his brotherly duties and shared the advice which kick-started his healing process.
“Even though he did not accompany me all the time, he would still send me messages, saying: ‘Younger brother, you must move forward’. I asked him how, he said: ‘Put down your left foot, and step ahead with your right. That’s how you can walk onward.’”