Chris Kirk Confesses ‘Bad Memories’ of Battling Loneliness and Need for Companionship

Published 02/27/2024, 11:37 PM EST

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USA Today via Reuters

In the sprawling greens of the PGA Tour, where victories are celebrated and legends are made, there exists a silent adversary lurking in the shadows: loneliness. It has been quite a rough phase for Chris Kirk battling his demons alone in the premises of hotel rooms. 

But amidst this solitary struggle, there shines a beacon of camaraderie in the form of his band of brothers. Kirk shared his story about how he faced his hardships and rose above his fears.

Chris Kirk is forging bonds off the fairways


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I had all those bad memories of sitting by myself in a hotel room,” Kirk confessed, “If that’s what I have to do to come back to the TOUR, then I’m not going to do it. Chris Kirk sought refuge in a $2 million rental house for the recent AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am tournament, in the warmth of companionship to break through from his fear of loneliness.

With that, Kirk, the self-proclaimed “house dad,” opened the doors of his rented abode for his fellow pros like Sepp Straka, Brian Harman, Brendon Todd, and others. To share rolling laughter, Yahtzee battles, late-night card games, and little victories was a refreshing break for him.

Every week, instead of opting for a hotel, Kirk rents a house along with these players. “That was definitely something that is something I’m in a point to do when I decided to come back to play,” he expressed. “Just kinda realized how much more fun life how much more better the quality of life was staying in this house vs. staying in the hotel.”


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For the six-time PGA Tour winner, the rental house crew was so much more than just friends they were his lifeline. Amid the hustle and bustle of the Tour, his companions offered a sense of belonging that he yearned for years. Whether it be sharing a meal after a long day on the greens or simply enjoying each other’s company, they reminded him that he was never truly by himself. After all, not long ago, things weren’t going as smoothly for Kirk as they were right now.

Kirk overcame a prolonged battle 


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In the silent corners of the PGA Tour, amidst the lush fairways and cheering crowds, the 38-year-old fought a battle that very few knew about. Alcoholism and depression gripped him tightly, curtailing his talents and dreams. But even in the darkest of his days, a glimmer of hope emerged from the rental houses.

The Sentry at Kapalua win to open the season set the stage for his subsequent success. Meanwhile, Harman claimed his first major at The Open Championship, Straka parlayed his run in the FedExCup all the way onto the Ryder Cup team, and his other roommates stamped their victories as well. The rental house crew finally trespassed the boundaries to overcome their bad phases. 


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The story of Chris Kirk and the rental house crew undeniably highlights the troubles athletes face. Moreover, the pros pairing up off-course in the house is a reminder that it’s not always about winning or losing in the game of life, but the connections made along the way!



Written by:

Dhruv Patel


One take at a time

Dhruv is a Golf Writer at EssentiallySports. With nearly a year of experience as a writer in sports journalism, he leaves his readers hooked with his unique insights about the gentleman’s sport. Dhruv has a knack for in-depth pieces that dive into golfers' lives and explore their lesser-known sides, and he has done so for many lesser-known names in the sport like Ronald Rugumayo and Patty Tavatanakit.
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