Indian cricketer Robin Uthappa revealed that he battled suicidal thoughts and depression during his career, a phase when cricket was perhaps the only thing that kept him from “jumping off a balcony”.
“I remember around 2009 to 2011, it was constant and I would deal with that on a daily basis. There were times where I wasn’t even thinking about cricket, it was probably the farthest thing in my mind,” he said during the Royal Rajasthan Foundation’s live session ‘Mind, Body and Soul’.
“I was thinking about how I would survive this day and move on to the next, what’s happening to my life and in which direction am I heading. Cricket kept my mind off of these thoughts but it became really difficult on non-match days and during the off-season. On days, I would just be sitting there and would think to myself on the count of three, I’m going to run and jump off of the balcony but something kind of just held me back,” he recalled.
It was at this stage that the 34-year-old began maintaining a diary before reaching out for professional help. “…(I) started the process of just understanding myself as a person. I then started to seek outside help to make those changes I wanted to make in my life,” he said.
“…for some reason there, no matter what I did or how hard I worked in the nets, I was just not able to score a run off my bat. I would spend hours in the nets to get it right but that would just not happen,” he said.
“Some part of me was actually not willing to accept that I had a problem with myself…I think sometimes we don’t accept the wrong and are unwilling to do so and it is really important to have the acknowledgement. The unwillingness to accept is the no one issue and especially for men, who find it difficult to accept their mental issues,” he added.
Robin Uthappa who was a part of Kolkata Knight Riders for a long time will be playing for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL 2020 which is currently postponed due to Coronavirus pandemic.