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28 May, 2019 14:30

‘I questioned whether or not I wanted to be alive’: Michael Phelps opens up about depression battle

‘I questioned whether or not I wanted to be alive’: Michael Phelps opens up about depression battle

US swimming legend Michael Phelps has opened up about mental health problems he experienced in the past, revealing that he sought the help of a licensed therapist to battle depression and anxiety.

In a series of twitter posts, the most-decorated Olympian of all time detailed his experience of overcoming his darkest days, saying that consulting a therapist “helped save his life.

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I struggled with anxiety and depression and questioned whether or not I wanted to be alive anymore,” Phelps wrote. “It was when I hit this low that I decided to reach out and ask for the help of a licensed therapist. This decision ultimately helped save my life.”

The 23-time Olympic gold medallist underlined that “getting help is a sign of strength, not weakness” and called on people with mental health problems to seek professional medical treatment without “waiting for things to get worse.”

Did you know that one in four people around the world experience a mental health issue? I was one of them,” Phelps went on to say. “You don’t have to wait for things to get worse. If you’re struggling, I encourage you to get help.”


In 2014 Phelps was arrested for driving under the influence of alcohol and was slapped with a six-month ban from US swimming.

After sitting out the lengthy suspension, the athlete returned to sport, making a splash at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Brazil where he won five gold medals.