India quick Mohammed Shami has opened up on how he wasn’t “well mentally” and had to deal with suicidal thoughts during a difficult phase of his life a few years ago.
Last month, Shami had revealed during an Instagram live session with teammate Rohit Sharma that he contemplated suicide on three different occasions: “I also thought of committing suicide three times. Someone used to stay with me 24/7, I was not well mentally.”
In a recent interview with Hindustan Times, he highlighted how he got through the demanding phase with the help of his family and India teammates.
“Depression is a problem that needs attention,” Shami said. “It was unfortunate to see such a brilliant actor like Sushant Singh Rajput lose his life. He was a friend and I wish I could talk to him had I known about his mental condition.
“In my case, my family pulled me out of that low phase. They took care of me and made me realise that I needed to fight back. There were times I felt suicidal but my family ensured I was never alone. Someone or the other would always be around, talking to me. Spirituality also helps you seek answers. Talking to your close ones or counselling is the best way out.”
Further expanding on how mental health can interfere with an athlete’s progress, the 32-year-old said: “Mental pressure definitely interferes in your physical wellbeing. At the same time, if you seek help from others and talk about it, you can get rid of such issues off the field.
“I was lucky to have the team’s support staff along with Virat Kohli and other players backing me. We are like a family. My teammates always insisted I vent my anger and frustration out on the field. I am happy that phase is over.”