Nick Kyrgios has opened up on his mental health struggles, detailing self harm, suicidal thoughts and abuse of alcohol and drugs.
In an Instagram post accompanied by a picture of him at the Australian Open in 2019, Kyrgios described the time as “one of my darkest periods”.
He urged others in a similar situation to seek help and support, saying he had now turned his life around.
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Kyrgios wrote: “This was me 3 years ago at the Australian Open. Most would assume I was doing ok mentally or enjoying my life… it was one of my darkest periods.
“If you look closely, on my right arm you can see my self harm. I was having suicidal thoughts and was literally struggling to get out of bed, let alone play in front of millions. I was lonely, depressed, negative, abusing alcohol, drugs, pushed away family & friends.
“I felt as if I couldn’t talk or trust anyone. This was a result of not opening up and refusing to lean on my loved ones and simply just push myself little by little to be positive.
“I know that day to day life can seem extremely exhausting, impossible at times. I understand that you feel if you open up it may make you feel weak, or scared. I’m telling you right now, it’s OK, you are not alone.
“I’ve been through those times when it seemed as if those positive energetic vibes were never ever going to be reality. Please, don’t feel as if you are alone, if you feel as if you can’t talk to anyone, I’m here, reach out.
“I’m proud to say I’ve completely turned myself around and have a completely different outlook on everything, I don’t take one moment for granted. I want you to be able to reach your full potential and smile. This life is beautiful.”
Now ranked down at 137, Kyrgios has played very sparingly on the ATP Tour over the past couple of years but was this week given a wild card for next month’s Masters tournament in Miami.
The 26-year-old won his first grand slam title in men’s doubles at the Australian Open last month with close friend Thanasi Kokkinakis.
If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this article, you can freephone the Samaritans 24 hours a day for confidential support at 116 123 or email email@example.com.
You can also freephone the national Bereavement Support Line run by the HSE and Irish Hospice Foundation at 1800 80 70 77 (Monday-Friday 10am-1pm), and the contact information for a range of mental health supports is available at mentalhealthireland.ie/get-support/.
In the case of an emergency, or if you or someone you know is at risk of suicide or self-harm, dial 999/112.